Our Process: Designing a Custom Home
So, you have looked at all of our house designs, you like the look and feel of them and would love to live in “a house like that”—but none of the homes seem quite right for you, and you cannot imagine how any of them could be modified to fit your particular situation. Maybe your family is big and you often have tons of overnight guests. Or you have many interests and each needs its own space. Or your site is absolutely unique. You might best be served by having us work with you to design a completely custom solution.
First off, you should be aware that even though your home will be designed uniquely for you, it will be an assembly of our proven details and will be constructed like all of our houses: Its shell will be built in a factory as a series of panels and components, which will be trucked to your site and assembled by an experienced framing crew on a foundation built by a contractor from your area. Once the shell is weather-tight, your contractor will use our detailed construction documents to finish the home using locally acquired materials, and install the products provided in our package.
The Design Process
The process of designing your house will begin when we work out with you exactly what you want and need in order to live the life you are imagining: What types of rooms, and how many? And how big? Which spaces should be close to what other spaces? Any rooms that should be off on their own? And what qualities should those spaces have? Expansive? Intimate? Homey? High-tech?
Once we have a handle on these questions, we will be able to work up a rough square-footage estimate and give you a first approximation of the cost of building your home. Then, we will refine the design— and at each stage in the process, we will keep you apprised of how the refinements are affecting your home’s price.
We will visit your site, and make a 3D computer model of how the land lies. We’ll then begin arranging 3D block-models of the spaces of your house, nestling them into your site. We’ll go through a whole series of these arrangements—which we’ll share with you by linking our office computer-screens with your home-screen, via online meeting software. You’ll see, in real time, how it will feel to move through your house. And we’ll discuss together, the reasoning behind every refinement we make.
As the process moves forward, the 3D models of your house will get more and more “real.” Blocks of space will become rooms; and we will start to choose windows, finishes, cabinetry. Eventually, we will have a computer-model that depicts your house with enough specificity that we can “cost it out:” we will be able to guarantee a price for manufacturing and erecting your home’s shell, and local contractors will be able to make quotes on doing their work. At that point, construction will proceed just as it does with our standard Axiom houses.
Time and Costs
Now, you can easily imagine that designing a house from scratch takes quite a bit longer than modifying a house already designed. And because each custom design process is unique, it is difficult to foresee how long the process will take—so we will be doing this design work on an hourly basis.
Obviously, this only sketches the outlines of the custom design process—but it is a process we’ve guided clients through many times. There are few things more exciting—for a designer and for a client—than designing a wholly new dream home. Regardless of the solution that you feel is most appropriate for your project, please get in touch— we would be happy to guide you through the options.
Please give us a call at 617.868.1867 or send us an email at email@example.com , and we can help get you started.
If you would like any other information about our process or what we offer, please visit our FAQ overview page.