What’s the real secret to staying on budget during your healthy home build?

Want to know why so many home building projects go over budget?  Your first guess might be a bad grasp on how much there is to spend, or how much things cost, or maybe that material and labor costs seem to keep going up.  And honestly, all of these problems do make a project go over budget.

But one of the biggest reasons that projects go over budget is because there is a lack of an integrated design team and integrated design process.  


Are you giving me a blank stare right now?  That's fine.  The idea of an integrated design team is a relatively new term, and it is usually not utilized for residential projects.  But it is becoming more and more common, especially on projects that focus on sustainable (earth-friendly) and healthy home design.

Find out what an integrated design team is and why to incorporate one in your new healthy home build in today's video!

(Not sure what I mean by a healthy home?  Get the juicy details here.)

The video covers:

What an integrated design team and integrated design process is

So, what is an integrated design team??  Well, it's the idea that everyone involved in designing and building your house will be a part of the design process from the very beginning.  

Designing and building sustainable and healthy homes are more complex than their traditional counterparts so getting the whole team involved from the concept of design will help create a cohesive design and will help keep the project within budget.  

Who to have on your team from the very beginning

Who should be involved:

  • You, the client
  • Architect or design professional
  • General contractor
  • Mechanical engineer or contractor
  • *Healthy home consultant (Can be architect if they are specialized here)
  • *Sustainable design consultant (Can be architect if they are specialized here)

Other possible consultants:

  • Civil engineer
  • Structural engineer
  • Electrical engineer
  • Landscape Architect
  • Interior designer
  • Lighting designer
  • Energy modeler, Passive House expert or other specialized sustainability professional

why use the integrated design process for your healthy home

The conventional way of designing a home, or any building, is that the architect designs the project with the client, then the engineers add their components, often fighting against what the architect has designed, then the contractor builds the project.   

There is no collaboration between the different entities that are designing and building the project.  This adds cost, time and frustration for everyone involved.

This approach really doesn't work for healthy and sustainable homes because these buildings are specialized and much more complex.  There is more coordination that needs to happen between the designers and the engineers to make sure the healthy home goals are reached, and more collaboration with the contractor because they need to understand the pricing and sourcing of specialty materials if there are any.

Getting everyone involved from the beginning makes for a seamless design and construction process.  

The whole team, including you, the client, is giving input on design ideas, necessary requirements to meet healthy home needs, and cost factors with each proposed idea.  

This means that all the potential problems that could arise later down the design phase or in the construction phase are being hashed out at the very beginning.  

And this saves soooo much time and money!

Benefits of an Integrated Design Process and Team

  • Project will stay on budget
  • Design and construction process take less time
  • Less frustration for everyone involved
  • A better finished product

Final Thoughts:

There are so many benefits to having an integrated design team for your wellness home design.  But I think the biggest benefit is how smoothly the project will run from beginning to end.  This will save you so much frustration and make the process of designing and building your home enjoyable instead of painful (which is what commonly happens).