There are several steps that will make the consultation more efficient and effective. These directives depend on the size of your project, scope of work and necessary documentation.
A plan of the existing conditions makes our job much easier. For most projects you will eventually need an autocadd drawing of the existing house. If you have old drawings that might not be exactly accurate we can work with those. For a small project such as a kitchen or a bathroom we can take measurements at our “fly-by” meeting. If you are interested in pursuing as-builts we can make recommendations on draftspeople. As built elevations and site plans may or may not be necessary depending on the scope of work.
Site Plan or Survey
Boundary surveys may be required if the proposed development is outside the footprint of the existing building and close to the property lines, or if you aren’t sure where the property lines are, or if you live in a jurisdiction that requires surveys for any addition. A topographic survey may be necessary for a very sloped lot, or a property with many natural features such as trees, rocks, creeks, etc. We can recommend surveyors to you that are able to do both boundary and topographic surveys.
For any project that will affect the envelope of the house you will need zoning information such as setbacks from property lines, maximum size and height of structure, etc. This information can be obtained online or by going to the planning department in person (which is recommended). We can give you a list of pertinent questions before you go, or if you prefer we can do the research.
Before meeting with us many of our clients set up an idea book either with magazine photos or online. (www.houzz.com or www.pinterest.com are both good places to start). Visual images are very useful in the design process. A wish list with priorities is always helpful also.