Dear Ladies and or Gentlemen,
I am enjoying reading this blog and feel that I have learned a good deal from some great posts, but just posting blogs and wishing for a change in my opinion will not do the necessary fix. There seems to be a detachment in most of the circles between the Architect and the Contractor/ Builders and the homeowners.
One in this group has the opinion that 3 is company and wants to eliminate one of the players so there are only 2 left.
Whether it is an Architect and an owner builder; in this scenario more times than not the owner gets into deep trouble attempting to do their own contracting, they have poor knowledge of construction and management skills, they do not have the size the guy up skills to weed out the unqualified, the field personal sense this and eat said homeowner alive, producing shoddy work, running away with money and not completing the project. Soon the suppliers are calling the homeowner claiming that they were never paid for materials.
The homeowner has no recourse if the crews that were hired were unlicensed with no insurance. Said homeowner calls the Architect in a panic and complains that the plans are wrong or the crews that the homeowner hired, the ones that just screwed said homeowner could not understand the plans, stating this must be why the workers abandoned the job.
The Architect must now waist allot of time defending his design plans, visits to the job site, phone calls, yet still, consoling the homeowner, trying to avoid that Famous statement [it is your fault for not hiring qualified individuals not mine].
Or consider this scenario:
The Homeowner with a Contractor/ Builder, absent of an Architect; Design plans are found somehow, whether the owner drew them, the contractor drew them or they were purchased out of a Rag book it does not matter in this scenario. This homeowner has the idea that these are the plans that are to be used. The Contractor/Builder is not going to object, he wants a job, and if things go bad said contractor will blame it on the plans.
The Contractor/Builder starts to build the project things start to run amuck, measurements do not match the plans, walls do not fit, structural items are missing, expensive change orders are being created by the Contractor/Builder who tells the homeowner that an architect is needed to solve the problems, the homeowner calls and blames the structural engineer, who says that he has no Architectural input, that he just designed the structural components for the design package that was given to him. "Read my contract"
Finally said homeowner realizes that an Architect is needed, but the Homeowner wants to punish any Architect that provides a cost to correct the design issues by attempting to beat up said Architect to get a dirt cheap cost. And yes the homeowner then expects the Architect to take on all of the liability for the failed project.
If indeed the homeowner finds an Architect to take on this mess it will be a costly one for both. The homeowner should pay whatever it takes to clean up the mess.
Yes in both scenarios this all could have been avoided if from the start;
1. The Homeowner or property owner is on board with an Architect.
2. An Architect is hired from the start.
3. A Licensed General Contractor is hired from the start.
This is a sweet thing when collaboration is conducted from the start of the project it rings a feeling of team work and a drive to get the project to completion maneuvering over any road bumps.
How do we go about getting 1. 2. 3. scenario?
Public Awareness: not just wishing they had it, but putting the information in their face. Create advertisement, perhaps a fund that puts the proceeds towards public awareness. How about a infomercial on tv with all of the Architects out there and all of the contractors to chip in a little this could build up fast. Create a collaboration membership for a fee, members call upon each other in the group to use their area of expertise. It is a start...............
The California Contractors State Contractors License Board www.cslb.ca.org
has a nice video of a informercial where a husband and wife are in bed reading when their unlicensed worker falls through the ceiling into bed with them, debris follow and it is a mess the viewer gets a mind full of how important it is to hire licensed qualified help.
Contractors/ Builders: create collaboration between 1.2.3. this is a must if they do not want this then hire another Contractor/ Builder who does.
Architect: No worries here as they know they are needed and always willing to do their job.
Cook Construction Company
Canoga Park CA