The design process is a very lengthy one, involving designers of several specialties. Although they do intersect from time to time, they do not always start their design knowing the other key players. Because of this, it is important that there be a lead designer coordinating and communicating with everyone so there are no surprises or hold ups along the way.
Initially the architect is the first designer on the job when building a new home, or any project that involves structural work. She or he must first determine the landscape attributes and relevant area codes to determine the maximum size the home can be. The client should have a good idea of what they want in their new home or addition before they interview architects. This is important because the architect should be creating the overall footprint of the new home based on your needs and wants, not just what is popular or will fit. Remember, pictures speak a thousand words.
Once the architect is secured and the size of the job is determined, you would have what is called preliminary plans drawn up so that you can interview contractors for the job. It is best to have the preliminary plans so that you can review any unusual or specialty details to be sure the contractor is right for the job. You also want to be sure there is a good working relationship between the architect and the contractor, although that applies to all of the members of your team, when it comes to excavation, foundations and other structural details in the project, these two entities need to communicate well with one another.
You are now ready to look for an interior designer. Next week I will talk about how to interview interior designers and what you need to do to get the most out of the interview.