In the construction industry, the traditional way of completing a project means getting a design from an architect, soliciting bids for the work, and selecting a general contractor to complete the work. Known as "design-bid-build," this method is still very much the norm in home construction. But another approach - the Design-Build method - has seen a resurgence in recent years, thanks to a skyrocketing remodeling industry and the unique challenges presented by remodeling work. "There's a big difference between new building compared with tie-ins to existing homes," says Ed Campbell, Operations Manager for G.M. Roth, a Nashua, NH-based home remodeling firm.
"That's why about 70% of remodeling designs created by architects never make it to the actual construction phase." Design-Build dates back as far as ancient Greece, where great works like the Parthenon rose under the watchful eye of a "Master Builder," responsible for both the design and the construction. Today, such master builders are known by many different terms - "project managers," "production managers," even "lead carpenters." No matter what you call them, the two prominent reasons why they're gaining in popularity today are: 1.
Flexibility. In a "design-bid-build" situation, the designer is removed from the process once a project is sent out for bids. If changes need to be made in the middle of construction, they often require time-consuming redesigns - and can often involve a lot of finger-pointing between architects and builders. Not so with Design-Build.
"Designers are involved throughout the process," Campbell says, "so they can make changes on the fly based on what the installers encounter at the job site." 2. Cost savings. When changes have to be made during construction, bringing the designer back into the process often involves spending more money to get a redesign?which can mean more money on the construction side?which can make life increasingly difficult for the owner caught in the middle.
With Design-Build, Campbell says there's a significant cost savings. "Designers learn up front what the budget requirements are, so they can recommend the appropriate materials for the project. They won't design an SUV remodel on an economy budget.
" And as the remodeling industry exploded (reaching $280 billion in 2005, nearly double that of 1995's performance, according to the National Association of Home Builders), the Design-Build approach grew with it. According to a 2004 survey by ZweigWhite, integrated design-build firms will see 80% of their revenues come from design-build projects through 2014. There's an even simpler reason to like the Design-Build approach, however.
"It's one-stop responsibility for everything that happens with your remodeling project," says Campbell. "How can you beat that?".
About G.M. Roth Since 1986, G.M. Roth has been designing and building award-winning projects. From kitchen and bath remodeling to in-law suites, porches and decks, clients get their "Dreams Delivered" by G.M. Roth. To find out more about G.M. Roth, and how their commitment to the Design/Build philosophy provides flexibility for your project while preventing time delays and cost overruns, go to www.GMRoth.com.