Frequently Asked Questions About Architectural and Interior Design Planning

Method Residential Design |

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When it comes to architectural and interior design planning, there are a ton of questions clients have but often find answers difficult to come by. At Method Residential Design, apart from our ability to deliver excellent services, we pride ourselves on our ability to educate our clients. This is why, to help you understand more about how design and building functions, we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions about architectural and interior design planning.

1. How long does design take?
Design time varies from client to client and knowing what each client is looking to achieve with their project. Planning is the key to any successful project, and with proper planning it allows us to guide our clients in the right direction to make their project precisely what they are looking for.

2. How long does it take to get a permit?
The permit process can vary from municipality to municipality. What determines the type of permit you require is the size and scope of the project. Based on your municipality there can potentially be two types of permits, - development and building permits.

Development permits deal with the land use by-law which governs what type of structure you can have on your property, the size of the structure and the use of the structure. This is to ensure these structures conform to the land use by-law and meet the requirements of the by-law. The timing for these specific permits can be from ten to twelve weeks and sometimes longer based on all of the checks involved in the permit being approved and also the sheer volume of projects being submitted within the municipality.

Once a Development permit has been approved, if one is required, a Building permit is now needed. Building permits are to ensure that correct building practices are being used and all construction meets the National and Alberta building codes. This ensures all buildings are constructed to the National and Provincial standards. Building permits tend to be a bit quicker in their approval process ranging from two to four weeks. Once a Building permit is approved the contractor or homeowner can now start the construction of the building, addition or renovation.

3. Can I make changes to my drawings once the permit has been applied for?
Revision to drawings can always be made, however, based on where it is in the process of approving a drawing re-submission may be required based on the severity of the revision, which can sometimes affect the overall timing of the project. Even though changes do occur, a well-planned project usually does not require revisions based on the client knowing precisely what they want before any permit submissions.

4. Do I need engineering?
Engineering is usually required when making structural changes to a building that affect the integrity of the structure. However, sometimes engineering is also required when adding architectural elements such as stone, EFI’s systems, etc. Should engineering be required, we will inform our clients in advance as additional costs are usually needed and to eliminate surprises down the road.

5. Can I live in my house while renovating?
Living in your residence is possible while renovating based on the size and scope of the renovation. If you are renovating an entire floor, it is greatly suggested to find alternate accommodations. Renovations can be dusty, noisy and can be stressful for someone not accustomed to renovations, as essentially, your home becomes a construction site.

This may become a hindrance as finding places to rent for somewhat short time frames could pose to be difficult, however, we have always found our clients to be much happier when they can visit their job site as opposed to living in it.

6. I am not sure what style I want how can you help me?
There are many different styles when it comes to design and to find the one you like can be daunting. We have numerous tools to help determine the look you are after. Sometimes staying within the existing aesthetic within your home and giving it a refresh is the way to go. We use to determine a client wants, needs and likes. is an incredible resource for clients not sure on their style. There are thousands of examples from kitchens, new homes, patios, ensuites and home styles to help you determine what you are looking for. Finally, our many years of experience in the industry to guide and help you find the look and aesthetic you are after based on asking the right questions and providing you with the guidance to make your dreams a reality.

7. How much does this cost?
This is, of course, the most asked question within the industry. Understanding cost can have a huge impact where you wish to spend your money. The main cost of a project, of course, is always driven by the size and scope of the project but is more so driven by the selections made to get the project completed. Two projects of the same size and scope can vary by thousands of dollars solely based on the preferences that the client is choosing. This is where a good designer can help get you the desired look and keep your project on budget. We pride ourselves on our ability to do just that. With the use of our trade partners and suppliers, we can get you what you are looking for while keeping your project on budget.

8. Are the drawings and design mine when they are finished?
Once the final payments have been received all drawings and selections sheets are the property of the client. Before this, they are the property of the design firm. We will provide design review drawing sets with a “not for construction” watermark applied to them. Once the client signs off on the finalized drawings and design and final payment is received we then remove the watermark and release the documents to our clients.

If you have any more questions about architectural and interior design planning, get in touch with the experts at Method Residential Design. As the best building and interior design company in Calgary, AB, we strive to deliver a finished product of the highest quality. Right from our initial design to finished permit drawings, our building designers guide you in the right direction, and we rely on our many years of expertise and our methodical approach to design to give you the best possible service. To learn more about how we can help you, please click here or contact us by clicking here.