Ready for a remodel? Before you jump the gun and hire your contracting crew, consider the benefits of architectural input. Architects and designers plan and design buildings, remodels, and major renovations. If you’re thinking it’s just more money spent, it might be the opposite.
You could save a bundle with their building code and structural requirement knowledge, as well as ensuring your vision comes properly to life. Mike Gutierrez, a building designer and highly rated Thumbtack pro serving the Southern California region, gives us the inside scoop on how to save you money.
What services does your business provide?
We offer architectural design and drafting in association with a licensed engineer who provides us structural calculations and Title 24 calculations—the minimum energy efficiency standards new homes, additions, or commercial properties in California must meet. My personal passion for the work lies in coming to a new project site and envisioning various ways the project can be approached, then delivering a satisfying outcome for the client.
What is the most common request you receive from Thumbtack?
On Thumbtack the biggest request is for room additions, the second most common request is for conceptual design. Clients want help understanding and seeing how a project will end up looking along with an approximate timeline and cost to build.
How can hiring an architect or designer save money in the long run?
- We see the big picture, acting as the the translators between the customer and the local building departments we work with.
- Architects and designers also act as the translators between the clients and the contractors, ensuring the client vision is met. This is especially helpful when there are multiple contractors on the job.
- We know what clients are allowed to do, therefore eliminating wasted time and money on structures that don’t meet code or need permits.
- We are trained to know the ins and outs of the design, construction, and permitting processes. It’s our job to know all these details, so again we save the clients time and money.
- We provide our customers with a functional, aesthetically pleasing, and cost-effective project.
- Architects and designers can also save you money through use of sustainable materials, design, and technology.
Any tips for finding a great architect or designer?
Ask questions. Look for a person who arrives prepared to your first meeting, whether in-person or virtual. Do they bring a property report? This way they can determine variables such as location (city or. county) which will impact building permits. Have they called the planning department that oversees the project location to research property limitations? A good architect or designer will have this information ready before sitting down and helping you bring your vision to life.
As a customer you need to decide first if you trust the professional for your project.
Ask to see their portfolio of work, and read reviews. Different states have different laws regarding what is required to operate as a licensed architect. A designer has often had similar training and education but has not been licensed. If it’s important that you have a licensed architect, be sure to research their background as well as your state licensing regulations.
What do you wish more clients knew?
That it is not only about the budget the client has at the beginning. We like to ensure that besides a project being affordable, it will be aesthetically pleasing and functional. Being flexible is helpful for clients, as their vision might have to adapt to what is structurally sound and possible based on permitting.
Also, when filling out your request for quotes on Thumbtack, be as thorough as possible when describing the project. The more details you provide, the more realistic of a proposal we can provide!
What’s your favorite job via Thumbtack?
My favorite jobs are the ones that are difficult and require me to go the extra mile for my client. The challenging jobs are the best, because they keep me growing. Through Thumbtack work I have also made great alliances with other professionals, builders, and investors. On a recent job I was invited to and attended a project inauguration dinner by a customer, which I really enjoyed.
How does payment work?
Architects and designers generally charge one of several ways: hourly, a lump sum, a percentage of total construction costs, or some combination of these. You can ask for an initial estimate for your project and discuss what their payment options look like.