Jim Bell Architectural Design Inc. | Ottawa, Pembroke, Arnprior, Renfrew, Eastern Ontario | Custom Homes, Cottages, Renovations, Additions & Commercial | Architecture Firm | Architectural Designer Architectural Design - Jim Bell Architectural Design Inc. | Ottawa, Pembroke, Arnprior, Renfrew, Eastern Ontario | Custom Homes, Cottages, Renovations, Additions & Commercial | Architecture Firm | Architectural Designer

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Architectural Design.

At Jim Bell Architectural Design our process is unique and tailored to ensure that the experience of building your new custom home, or renovating your existing one, respects your time, money and dreams, while ultimately culminating in results that wow you—a custom home or cottage that is beautiful, functional and a joy for you and your family for years to come. You want to choose the right architecture firm for you, and the design process is key to not only a successful outcome, but also the journey you will experience along the way.

First, Jim offers a complimentary phone consultation to confirm a few details and understand your needs so that he can prepare for a meeting or site consultation. Jim will share his design process and you will have an opportunity to ask questions about your project and next steps. 

The initial consultation is complimentary and without obligation. So you have nothing to lose and everything to gain from Jim’s 30+ years of experience. Contact us today.

sitevisitThe next step is to meet—on your potential build site if you’ve chosen one—and Jim will seek to understand your vision and answer your questions. During the visit, Jim will:

  • listen to your desires and goals and provide feedback on lot attributes and benefits
  • show you how many crucial custom home design decisions are strongly influenced by the physical properties of the build site
  • discuss zoning restrictions and the relationship between the natural characteristics of your property and desired build features

Fee applies. If you sign a contract with us, the site consultation fee will be applied to your retainer.

programmingThis critical phase captures your vision, wants and needs, along with the technical aspects of the site and a plan to define the overall parameters and feasibility of the project. It’s an essential step that many designers and contractors miss. By the end of this stage you’ll have a high-level view of all aspects of the project and understand what is possible for your site and budget.
The Program Brief will document key elements of your project including: design objectives, space requirements, budget estimates, proposed schedule, site and zoning analyses, site survey and soil/geotechnical report.
A Program Brief will not only reduce headaches and smooth the process considerably, but will also reduce your overall design/build budget when compared to skipping this step and jumping into drawings and construction before your needs, wants and budget are fully understood.
Now, with a strong understanding of your needs, wants and dreams and an analysis of the technical requirements fully documented, Jim begins with a blank page and over 30 years of design-build experience to make your vision a reality. He doesn’t just modify an existing design, Jim develops new sketches to illustrate the look and feel of your new home.
By the end of this phase you will be well on your way to your custom dream home or cottage design with:

  • a preliminary site plan
  • floor plans (with size and location of rooms)
  • preliminary cost estimates for construction

Be assured; you will be part of the team and decision-making process every step of the way.

schematicdesignYour custom home design is refined during Design Development. The sketches become formal plans and elevations including exterior finishes and key details. Engineering consultants enter the process and provide drawings to define the structural, electrical and mechanical components of your home.

With Jim Bell Design Inc the design of your custom home or cottage doesn’t end with the structure itself, but also can include a complete interior design and landscaping plan. If you choose those options, Jim’s drawings will include interior finishes, room layouts, colours, fixtures, appliances, hard and soft landscaping and other design details that will make your house your home.

documentsConstruction Documents capture the entire project in full detail and in this phase we obtain all required permits. Contractors are impressed by the thoroughness and accuracy of Jim’s construction documents and this attention to detail means the permit process moves along smoothly and quickly.

The construction documents are extensive and provide the specific details required for building your home or cottage.

constructiondrawingsThen you are ready to move into the building phase. Our services in this phase vary and are established specific to each project. Typically, upon completion of the construction documents, if you choose to retain our Contract Administration services, we apply for permits, organize potential builders for pricing and assist in ordering special materials (as required). We review the tender(s) obtained and negotiate contract(s), as required. We review schedules, proposed payment schedules and project milestones.
During construction, we establish regular site meetings, carry out unscheduled reviews and assist the contractor with additional information or direction. We review proposed alternates and co-ordinate required administrative duties. We review shop drawings from the major sub-trades and meet with them as required. We review, monitor and administer all payments to the contractor, and can certify mortgage draws, at your bank’s request. At the conclusion of construction, we review the project and report on deficiencies.
We also review the completed project eleven months after completion, before the standard contractor warranties expire, and produce a warranty deficiency list, if required.

Download more information about the architectural design process, and more, from our Resources page.

Speak with Jim to share your vision. A consultation is complimentary and without obligation. So you have nothing to lose and everything to gain from his 30+ years of experience. Contact Jim Bell today!

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