Architectural Design Consultation

Starting off on a Solid Foundation


Congratulations!  You’ve arrived at the starting point of your home-building experience.  This is, in many respects, the most important stage of all. During the architectural and design development phase, you will put together the team that will guide you through the entire process of designing and building your dream home.  In addition, this team can determine if your home reflects your dream and stays on schedule and budget.  These next few months will be exhilarating and creatively satisfying with the right team on your side. You’ll share your vision, and we’ll work together to make it a reality.



During this stage of the process, you and your chosen architect and designer will exercise your creative side. This is when you will work together to develop a rough design for your future home. The preliminary design is a general floor layout, and exterior elevation sketch representing your family’s specific demands, lifestyle, preferred aesthetic, dwelling size, and layout of spaces.


Once you’ve arrived at a design concept, we will generate a ballpark estimate for your home based on previous project costs, current material, labor pricing, and availability. This initial rough estimate will help guide us on how close your initial design phase aligns with your budget and will show the remainder of the architectural design phase.

Final Plans & Structural Engineering

Throughout the remainder of the architectural design phase, we collaborate with you and your architect/designer, offering our 30 years of construction experience, expertise, and insights allowing us to offer value engineering alternatives and cost-saving wherever it is available and appropriate. This is all done before plans are finalized. Addressing all budgetary and constructibility issues ensures that most, if not all, costly plan revisions are avoided.


As plans become final, we immediately begin compiling a detailed and accurate budget for your project. We review the plans and specifications before gathering and thoroughly vetting dozens of bids from our extensive network of high-value subcontractors, most of whom have been with us for over two decades. This allows us to create the most detailed and comprehensive budget possible. We strive to have no gaps in our budgets. This results in a less stressful construction experience. We strive for a smooth and low surprise journey through your entire build. Although this can never be guaranteed, this is what the pre-construction phase is all about. No pain, no stress, and no surprises.


This is when things truly get interesting! If you hire us as your builder, our team will immediately push to get plans submitted to the city and get any permits that are needed to be issued as soon as possible. We work closely with the best firm in town, Faster Permits, to acquire permits. All cities and municipalities have their own particular permitting process, so this alliance with Faster Permits will seamlessly guide us through the entire process. We also develop a detailed construction timeline, work with your architect and designer with material selections and continue to fine-tune the budget with all material selections that are made.
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After seeing one too many heartbreaks, we offer architectural design phase consultation as a stand-alone service. Way too often, prospective homeowners would design their homes with an architect but without consulting with a builder along the way, only to realize that after obtaining bids from various builders that their home could not be completed within their budget. When this happened, they would either have to pay for costly architectural modifications or, on some occasions, forego their perfect home entirely. This is unnecessary and can be avoided when you build your team correctly and early on in the process. As a result, we can provide the design phase services listed below without requiring you to commit to us as your ultimate builder, although we are committed to earning your trust so we can execute your dream plan. 
We’ll do the following:
  • Closely work with the architect and designers
  • Maintain the timeline for plan development
  • Provide design concepts from a builder’s perspective
  • Create an initial estimate based on the preliminary design.
  • Offer valuable building expertise and insight
  • Provide cost-cutting and value-engineering choices
  • Recommendations for high-performance house features
  • Decrease the potential of constructability problems
  • Ensure the home design and budget are in line
  • Include universal design features to provide for in-home aging


Given the number of residential architects in Portland, this is critical. A significant first step would be to ask people you trust. You can also ask us for some recommendations. We have worked with some of Portland’s most talented residential architects for the past 20 years, and we are constantly on the lookout for emerging high-quality talent.

Take the initiative of researching numerous architects and interviewing the top two or three who appear to compliment your specific design aesthetic. Visit our blog article “How to Choose an Architect?10 Questions to Ask for More Answers

Don’t be alarmed. If your plans and specifications have not yet been finalized, there is still time for us to review them and give assistance without going through a lengthy and costly architectural revision process. At this phase, we will search for value-engineering options and constructability constraints, as well as provide a budget estimate to assure that your home design and targeted budget are in sync.

We're happy you're looking into it because most people don't until it's too late. In short, bringing in a builder while your plans are still being finalized assures that the home your architect is building fits within your budget and does not pose any constructability challenges that should be solved before breaking ground. Builders, specifically those with extensive experience in custom home building, such as ourselves, are very aware of current construction costs, material and labor availability, scheduling requirements, and other aspects that influence the price of a house. Once your architect has completed a preliminary design for your home, having us provide a rough estimate of building costs is highly beneficial. This will allow you and your architect to determine whether the home design is on the right track. Throughout the rest of the design phase, we will continuously update this estimate while improving your home's design by providing a building experience and innovative ideas.

Absolutely! We've made it our goal to assist prospective homeowners through the design process without requiring you to commit to us as your ultimate builder. We are so convinced of the value of having a builder collaborate with your architect during the design phase that we offer it as a stand-alone service. There's no obligation, no surprises... simply added value.
When we partner with architects during the design phase, we establish a genuine collaborative relationship with the shared purpose of assisting you, our joint client. We value the architect as the artistic genius behind the design of your home, and the architect values us as the experts making that vision a reality. As the builder, we will provide value-engineering alternatives and options that match your budget while keeping the integrity and distinctiveness of your architect's design. Having an architect and a builder as a team during the design phase is like having two advocates in your corner simultaneously, ensuring that your home building experience is smooth and enjoyable.

To begin, you should be aware that in the state of Oregon, not anyone can be a builder.

There are licenses and various certifications required by law in this state. There are many homebuilders in and around Portland. Do as much research as possible to determine how experienced and capable your builder prospects are. Interview them. Request to accompany them to a home they've built and even one in progress (so you can see how they run their site during construction). Speak with their past homeowners. Learn their processes to ensure they are well-organized and efficient. Assess whether they're a good fit for you and your family. If you need more information on this subject, check out our Learning Center How to Choose the Right Builder for You.

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