There are many professionals that can help you with projects on your house. If you are just rearranging the cabinets and appliances in your kitchen, a kitchen designer may be right for you. If you are redoing interior or exterior finishes -and know what you want- you can often work directly with a contractor. The time to hire an architect is when any project involves changing part of the permanent structure of the house (walls, windows, doors etc). Architects are trained to keep in mind all the different aspects of a project- balancing how it looks inside with how the exterior will express the whole. The architect's job is to make sure that it will all work together, coordinating the structure, plumbing, electrical and finishes so that the finished product works well and looks great.
Architects are professionals who must maintain their professional license in order to be allowed to be practice architecture. For more information about working with an architect look for the Homeowner's Project Handbook in the directories section of: The Boston Society of Architects website.
Every project is unique to us and ends up with a style that is definitely its own. At Draudt Design we do not start with a preconceived style and fit the project into that mold. Instead we start with the site, any existing buildings, and sense of what the clients love. We then work to develop a specific architecture for the project. In some cases this is very traditional and in others very modern. The basic tenets of good design are the same no matter what the vocabulary- it needs to be structurally sound, work well, and delight the user's sensibilities.
The main services we provide are architectural design for residential projects- either new construction or addition/renovations. While the process is slightly different for every project, the overall scheme remains the same. View our Design Process page for more details. Draudt Design bills on an hourly basis. This makes it easy to consult on any number of issues including: helping house hunters evaluate possible properties, helping homeowners balance the tradeoffs of adding-on vs. moving to a new house, and helping people re-evaluate how they are using the space they have.
Draudt Design seeks to make its clients happy in the "greenest" possible way. Green Architecture is fast becoming the norm of architectural practice, but this does not mean that all homes are going to be made of rammed earth and hay bales. While those are appropriate for some conditions, most clients are interested in environmentally sensitive traditional construction. Draudt Design has always followed the traditional site planning strategies to maximize the impact of sunlight for heating in the winter and wind for natural cooling in the summer. We also consult on the various issues involved in deciding on levels of insulation, window and door efficiency, and various types of construction. We strongly advise using energy efficient appliances and fixtures and are always on the look out for environmentally friendly fixtures and finishes. One of the "greenest" things we do is simply help clients find ways to modernize and renovate the buildings they have- saving the environmental cost involved in a tear-down with all new construction.
Traditionally one important function of the architect is to act as the owners advocate in dealing with the contractor. For this reason, Draudt Design does not have any relationship with specific contractors. We do have a number of contactors that we have worked with and are happy to pass on their names and to help you in evaluating their appropriateness for the project.
Please contact us with any questions.