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432 Battlefield Blvd S #101, Chesapeake, VA 23322, USA

FAQ

Question 1. Why should you consider hiring RBA for your project?

 

In our practice, we focus on doing the two most important things in the architectural design field: capture our clienteles vision and using our expertise/technology, partner with the client to provide excellence in design and service.

The process starts by actively listening to our clients, asking questions, and taking notes. We desire to understand our clients' vision for their project. We identify your needs and then turn them into design opportunities when possible. Rather than allowing a constraint to compromise the design, using our vast years of experience we look for ways to create unique designs that integrates clients’ needs, vision and ideas.  In our design process, we strive to solve programmatic and functional requirements, by using space, light, color, detail and material, we craft designs that provide a rich and layered experience appropriate for the time, place, and the particular client.

 

We understand the personal investment of time and money clients’ commit to their project.  When designing projects, RBA takes into consideration budget and schedule. RBA takes responsibility to provide the leadership to successfully complete the project.

Lastly, our ultimate goal is to make the process as enjoyable as possible and we work hard at making it rewarding.

 

Question 2. Can you help me find someone to build my project?

Depending on the process and the type of contract you want to use, we can suggest several contractors to discuss the project with you.

We'll help you determine the best process for your project and the appropriate time to select a builder.

Question 3. Do I need to bring in other design consultants for my project?

Many architectural projects will require the design services of a licensed structural engineer. We may also recommend hiring a mechanical engineer to prepare drawings and specifications if you are interested in incorporating complex heating/ventilation/cooling systems. We typically recommend consultants to work directly with our clients, while RBA coordinates the team.

Most projects will require the services of a licensed Surveyor/Civil Engineer. If you are developing a site or making changes to a site, the civil engineer can guide on doing so economically.

Question 4. If I am building a home, will I save money if I purchase a plan online?

In today’s society, RBA is finding this to be a viable option for clients.  For those who desire to build a home “as shown” on a website, purchasing plans on line can be an excellent alternative to custom designing a home. Individuals who would like a custom home designed to their specific life style, it has been our experience that modifying stock plans on an hourly basis can result in the final cost being more than if the plans were designed using your vision. In addition, RBA’s custom design homes take advantage of qualities specific to your site such as solar access, topography (slope), views, and other site specific factors.

Question 5. How do you charge for your services?

RBA has a unique cost structure for our new home designs. We charge a set fee per gross square foot of the home depending upon the homes complexity. On renovations and additions, we will visit your site and provide a set fee, based on what we estimate the total hours will be. We do not base our fee on construction costs. 

 

For all projects, we will evaluate the scope of work and provide a complete design proposal, outlining our scope of work and our expected fees to cover that scope of work. We will also coordinate gathering fees from other design consultants that will be required for the project. Along with the proposal, we will provide a complete breakdown of the design costs, per phase of the project.

 

Question 6. How is payment handled by your firm?

 

Typically, we send out invoices at the end of each design phase, plus any reimbursable expenses. If you are financing your project, you may want to speak to your lender about financing design fees or inquiring whether the amount paid for design fees can be included as a portion of your required down payment. Before beginning work, we require a retainer (the amount will vary depending on the project size). The retainer is credited to your final billing.  If for any reason a project must be put on hold, any unused portion of the retainer will be returned to you.

 

Question 7. What types of projects do you design?

For more information on the project types we have worked on previously, see the projects section of our website.  To learn more about how RBA would make an ideal partner on your project, RBA offers a free consultation meeting.  This allows you to explain to us what your project entails. We will discuss the project with our staff and determine if we believe we would be a good fit for to work with you. A written proposal will then be sent to you outlining the scope of the project and projected cost.

Question 8. What type of payments do you accept?

We accept cash, checks, credit cards and Paypal.