Listening to the Owner
Listening to the client is our number one priority at RLB as we’re here to help you realize YOUR vision for your dream home, not ours. Whether you’re looking for a kitchen makeover, condo renovation, home addition and remodel, or a new home from the ground up, we make it our policy to listen to your hopes and ideas while working to address any doubts or concerns. By listening to our clients’ needs and wishes while evaluating the opportunities and constraints of the site, we’ll draw from our wealth of design expertise and knowledge of local codes and zoning to create a design that not only meets your expectations but exceeds them.
Protecting Your Investment
From planning through construction to final walk-through, RLB will guide you through the process of realizing your dream home. We’ll coordinate with your chosen team of consultants and vendors so the construction process runs smoothly and according to plan. We know how important your home is to you and will do our best to guard your interests and protect your investment from your home’s inception to completion.
Hands-On Throughout the Process
Knowledgeable and with years of experience, RLB thrives on new challenges and problem solving, always taking a pro-active approach to every project we take on. Open and collaborative, we work closely with each client to come up with an aesthetically pleasing yet functional design that not only satisfies your requirements but exceeds your expectations. Not a firm to disappear after delivery of the design documents, we’re also here to help our clients with bid preparation and contractor selection and work with the structural engineer and other consultants. Furthermore, we assist you with the permitting process and make ourselves available to observe construction to address any issues or design changes so that your vision is realized.
Fully involved in every phase of your project, RLB works closely with you and your team from design to completion. In addition to our design services, RLB will, among other things, prepare the construction documents, assist with contractor and vendor selection, guide the client through the permitting process and respond to any plan check corrections, and observe construction. During the construction phase, RLB will make periodic visits to the job site to observe the progress of the work. During our visits, we’ll be available to answer questions, address any issues, review the contractor’s submittals for conformity with the aesthetic design concept outlined in the construction documents, and, if requested, review the contractor’s invoices and change orders.
Over the course of our meetings with the client during the project’s design phase, RLB will discuss and incorporate interior features and finishes into the final design. Features and finishes in our interior drawings can include woodwork, tile, doors, cabinetry, hardware, fixtures, paint selections, and more. Additionally, we’ll provide electrical plans that show locations of lighting, outlets, switches, and other electrical notes. If there is no interior designer associated with the project, RLB will accompany the client to the tile, stone, plumbing fixture, and appliance stores to assist the client in making these selections
Design and Permitting
- Meet with the client regularly and be available to discuss ideas and answer questions.
- Study the house, site, its environment, and research local codes and zoning.
- Photograph and measure applicable portions of the house or condominium and draw floor plans of areas to be constructed or remodeled.
- Once floor plans have been established, develop exterior elevations and sections.
- Complete preliminary design documents, which will consist of a site plan, floor plans, sections, elevations, and notes describing features and finishes.
- If the budget is a concern, assist the owner in obtaining preliminary bids to make sure the design is on budget prior to the start of the construction documents.
- Prepare detailed construction documents to help guide the project from start to finish to minimize any conflicts and cost overruns.
- Coordinate the construction documents with the structural engineer and other consultants on the project.
- Assist the client in applying for all necessary permits from the local building department so the plan check and permitting process go smoothly and without delays.
- As the plan check generally takes four to eight weeks, minimal drawings containing elements required by the building department are submitted as soon as possible to save time. While waiting for the plans to be checked, more detailed drawings are completed and sent out to bid.
- After the plans are checked and then returned with corrections, it will take approximately two weeks to incorporate the modifications. After plans are rechecked and approved, the permit will then be ready to issue. Either the contractor or an agent authorized by the owner may pull the building permit.
- An expediter may be used to reduce the plan check time. Fees to the expediter are paid directly by the owner to the expediter.
RLB Architecture is a high-end architecture and design firm that provides custom design, planning, drafting, and construction administration services for projects in the Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Malibu, Santa Monica, and other Westside communities. Richard L. Blumenberg is the proprietor.
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