Getting started designing your house

Had a great first conversation with a new client this week. They had seen our sign at some new construction in the neighborhood where they just purchased a lot and decided to give us a ring. They have never hired an architect before or built a home so their first question to me was: how do we begin?

For many people, the concept of designing a new home is overwhelming. The sky seems  be the limit and there are so many choices looming ahead. How do you decide what style, how big, how small, how many stories, etc.. A few key things such as budget, neighborhood design guidelines and code will make some of these decisions easy. But even so, there are a lot of options and decisions. In the past, nearly all our clients would gather together clippings from magazines and make wish lists on paper — that was 10 years ago when we started the firm.

Today – although we still get our fair share of magazine clippings and wish lists on napkins, pretty much all our clients also send us links to their Houzz and Pinterest pages. I love it. So if you haven’t checked out either of these sites, especially Houzz, you need to set aside 2-3 hours one day to jump in.



Houzz is a lot like other social media sites, except it’s devoted to pictures of homes and landscaping. It is my go-to resource when I’m trying to narrow down what someone likes for bathroom fixtures or kitchen backsplash tile. It also works great for ideas for storage or front door designs.

Since our clients were using the site so often, our firm made the decision to invest in setting up our own Houzz page a while back. The result has been a steady and growing return of phone calls and hits on our website. Please check us out and feel free to follow our Houzz page — I’ll be posting more soon.

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