KentfieldModern Dining Room, San Francisco
It was decided to re-use an existing fireplace with new Sapele wood paneling above a lava stone base with Ortal three-sided gas fireplace.
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Architecture by ODS ArchitectureManage bidding or negotiation with contractors. Your architect can help you select a contractor and may recommend specific firms. He or she can also oversee competitive bidding or a negotiated bid with a single firm. If you choose competitive bidding, your architect can review bids for errors and tease out costs if the contractors have grouped them differently. “We help the clients evaluate the bids” in an “apples-to-apples” way, says Gina Moffitt of Kiyohara Moffitt in Los Angeles.Your architect may be able to offer insight into which contractor is fastest, who has the least amount of paperwork and more. If the bids come in beyond your budget, your architect can do some value engineering (changes to the plan that help you save on costs).Not all architects oversee competitive bidding by contractors. Some prefer that a homeowner choose a builder early in the process, and then they help the homeowner negotiate the agreement with that builder. This method has some advantages. “The point of having a contractor as part of the team is you can get budget feedback along the way and also feasibility [feedback] along the way,” says Amy Gardner of Gardner Architects in Silver Spring, Maryland.Oversee construction. During the construction phase, an architect can make sure the job stays on track. He or she may visit the job site, communicate with the builder and review contractor invoices to check that they match the actual progress on the home. “We’re gatekeepers for the clients’ schedule so they’re not getting peppered with requests,” says Mark Elster of AOME Architects in Seattle.Construction Contracts: What to Know About Estimates vs. Bids