Anyone who would like an individually designed house or would like to convert an existing property should consult an architect. As an expert they can attend to construction in the various work phases and implement the wishes of the client in a technically correct manner. Architects divide their services into nine different work phases, which along with the architect’s fees are regulated in the fee scale for architects and engineers (HOAI). In the process the client can assign the planning to the architect in part or in full. Depending on the wishes and budget of the client the architect can also perform the preparation, coordination and monitoring of the building project.
Step 1: Determination of the planning context
The determination of the planning context takes place at the beginning of each building project. During initial discussions the ideas of the client are recorded and specified. Following clarification of the terms of reference and the performance requirements the size and the rough scale of the property is determined. Here the integral part is the definition of the financial framework for the building project.
Step 2: Preliminary planning
In this work phase the aim is to come up with the rough outline of the established ideas and wishes of the client. The representations do not need to be true to scale, but instead give the client an image of the design and dimensions of the planned building. In the process the architect can introduce suggestions and advice with regard to building regulations, costs, statics, mechanical services and energy/eco-efficiency.
Step 3: Design planning
The design is an important step on the way to your architect-designed house with the aim of representing the final planning concept as a drawing. The architect will clarify all questions regarding the construction, such as the exact function, town-planning and design aspects and in particular: the costs. In preparation of the building proposal the authorities are also involved with regard to the approvability of the design.
Step 4: Approval planning
For the drawing up of the plans and calculations an authorised documentation designer (in Thuringia an architect or civil engineer) is required. For the clarification of (important) individual questions an outline building application can be submitted before a building proposal.
Step 5: Implementation planning
The basis for implementation on the building site are the detailed working drawings and detail drawings which are based on the design charts and building proposal plans. Included are also, for example, the information from the static calculation and technical planning (e.g. electric and heating). The final plans are to a scale of 1:50 and greater with drawings of all necessary individual specifications and explanations which are required by the tradesmen.
Step 6 & 7: Tendering and contracting
The building work is defined precisely by the architect and summarised in an invitation for tenders. The specifications are then sent to the building contractor so they can be used to deliver their cost estimates. The architect will subsequently examine the submitted offers and advise the client in the selection of tradesmen. For this purpose a price comparison is created for the individual positions, which highlights the differences between the cost estimates of individual companies. Finally the architect negotiates the offer and creates a detailed building contract. These services involve the work phases 6 and 7 in accordance with the fee scale for architects and engineers (HOAI).
Step 8: Site management
In this phase the actual house building is carried out. Here the architect supervises the work of the tradesmen and checks conformity with the planning permission, the final plans and the specifications as well as the schedule. The building site and the company involved need to be purposefully coordinated so that the building is carried out on schedule and free from defects. Furthermore the submitted tradesmen’s invoices are monitored and approved.
Step 9: Property management and documentation
The architect’s final work phase involves taking responsibility for the completed property. For this the architect carries out an inspection of the property and identifies defects before expiry of the statutory period of limitation. If defects exist, the architect asserts the warranty claims against the relevant building firm and supervises the arranged correction of defects.
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