Modern passive solar architect


Project delivery

Stephan Meijer Architecture offers a creative and cost-effective alternative to the traditionally fraught system of hiring an architect and then having to sort out quotes from a host of contractors.

The modern luxury architecture firm delivers outstanding homes by integrating high-quality design and building processes; the continuity of this proven system benefits both your pocket and your nerves. It’s very straightforward really—a win-win process because the economics stack up for all parties. Quality contractors and consultants are attracted to work with us because they like the way we work and what we produce. Quality is important and it doesn’t have to be expensive.

{jb_quote}As the architect, I play a major role and am directly responsible to the owner through a direct contract. Having established lines of communication with a reliable, skilled team saves time, money and most importantly, avoids miscommunication.{/jb_quote}{jb_author}Stephan Meijer.{/jb_author}


What’s wrong with tradition?


You’ve all heard stories about projects going over budget with senseless delays and poor workmanship resulting in quarrels between owners, architects and contractors. You’re more likely to come across such issues when you separate design from construction. Of course, the traditional way may work for you are a project manager at heart and can afford the time to oversee your project step by step. Most people don’t have time to personally project manage a new home project. Why would you bother when an integrated approach (with a skilled project manager thrown in for free!) relieves you of worrying about getting the job done right the first time?


Traditional design-build v design-build integration


Stephan Meijer Architecture’s innovative path works for both clients and contractors. For your information we compared the four main ingredients in both traditional and integrated methods of designing and building: communication, cost, schedule and quality.


1. Communication—if it’s not broken why fix it?


The traditional building method is broken into the components of the architect who designs and several contractors who are usually not affiliated with the architect. This type of design-bid-build process can be fraught with miscommunication between the owner, architect and builder. To make home building less complicated and effective (and more pleasant!) progressive architectural firms use the integrated method. When you hire us as your architect, we put together the best design and construction team for your home. The team is assembled early in the process and coordinated by a dedicated project manager at Stephan Meijer Architecture Ltd.


2. Cost – is it on the level?


Consider this scenario: Contractors are invited to bid to work on a house that the architect has already designed. If the construction bids come in over budget, the architect may be required to alter the design, costing the owner more time and money. Another trap for the unwary is the danger of contractors putting in unrealistically low bids to undercut each other. You might think is a good thing but be warned: low bids do not mean the lowest possible price. There is a practice in the trade of winning a low bid and making up for it by making excessive requests to change the orders. The contractor may not have read the contract properly and discovers there is more to the job than he quoted for and demands more. This happens more often than you might think and sometimes ends up in court. Traditionally, the architect does not have much control over construction costs but in our architect-led integrated model, the design-build package is carefully worked out to meet the owner’s budget. The preferred contractors and design team meet early in the project so the architect has full access to construction and pricing information before he puts pen to paper. Having everyone on board at the design phases means that there is less likelihood of cost increases and that there are no unpleasant surprises when building actually starts.


3. Schedule – he said he’d be here two weeks ago!


In the home construction industry time is frequently lost through ordering delays or waiting for clarification on construction details. By contrast, the integrated team works through scheduling issues at the design stage to predict and solve most potential problems before they cause construction delays. Our contractors have a lead-in time to order items before construction actually starts and plan their workload accordingly. Once you decide to go the integrated route you don’t have to worry about time management or an awkward bidding process. All you have to do is look forward to settling into your new home!


4. Quality counts for a lot


Obviously everyone in the building industry aims to make a “quality” product. Achieving quality depends on having relationships that work. A definition of quality says it is the “ongoing process of building and sustaining relationships by assessing, anticipating, and fulfilling stated and implied needs.'1

Sounds like us.

Our products rely on a network of professionals who strive to meet the very best standards. We deliver on our promises to transform your dream home from paper to reality as seamlessly as possible.