DENISE VON DASSEL, ARCHITECT

1. How does the design process work?

There are four phases of design which are modified as appropriate for each project:

Preliminary design- survey the existing structure and draw on CADD (computer aided drafting) (if applicable).
Prepare preliminary floor plans and primary exterior elevation(s) to develop size, relationship, location and scale of the spaces.

Schematic Design- Modify drawings per discussions with the Owner resulting from the preliminary design. Draw remaining exterior elevations and details as appropriate.

Design Development- Modify drawings to include any comments resulting from Schematic Design. Include building sections, details as necessary, windows, doors, finish and plumbing schedules, electrical/lighting plans, structural plans, specifications and details for the Structural Engineer's review, and any further refinement of the drawings.

Contract Documents- Final set of documents which include dimensioned plans, elevations,  interior and exterior details, final electrical/lighting layout, specifications and structural information etc.

Construction Administration- to be determined for each project.

2. How much will your services cost?

Hourly, with a predetermined maximum dollar amount established after meeting with you and determining the project  scope.

3. How long will the design process take?

Depending on the size of the project, it usually takes two to six months to complete the Contract Document phase. For instance, a small addition or renovation may take up to two months, while a large home may take six months or more.

4.Can you help me find a General Contractor?

Yes, we can provide you with the names of contractors, who would be appropriate for your project.

5. Do I need a site survey of my property?

If you live in an area near the shoreline or on a small lot, you may need to provide a survey indicating your lot boundaries, septic and well locations, building setbacks, spot elevations, and wetlands flagged. If you are going to need a zoning variance to proceed with your project you will be required to present an A-2 survey. We can assist you in determining if this is necessary and what information you may need to provide on the survey.

6. How do I know if I need a zoning variance?

We will review your proposed project and advise you of any variances required to complete your project.

7. Do I need to upgrade my septic system?

The Connecticut Public health Code states that for additions and alterations, you must demonstrate the ability to install a code-compliant system within the remaining area of your property. The system must be in naturally occurring soils (not fill). We can assist you in determining if you may need a system designed by a Civil Engineer.