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Advantages of having your Architect as your Home Builder (aka “Design-Build”)

  • Single Source of Accountability

    • The Design-Build approach means that both your architecture and construction are all handled under one roof (pun intended), so as the owner, you have more control over the entire process. Your financial risk is also reduced because you’re contracting with a single entity who is unconditionally committed to the success of your project.

    • In a traditional “Design-Bid-Build” method, the owner must first select an architect, finalize the design, bid-out the project, select a contractor and then act as an intermediary between the architect and contractor, which often results in miscommunication. The “design-build” approach is much more streamlined and eliminates many of the issues that occur with the standard “Design-Bid-Build” method.

  • Quality Control

    • The “Design-Build” approach inherently provides a higher quality than the “Design-Bid-Build” method, which often has the potential to result in conflict between the architect and contractor. As the architect/builder, we are solely responsible for the performance and therefore highly motivated to build with quality.

    • “Design-Build” eliminates the usual finger pointing among the architect and contractor, and instead allows us to focus on cost effective solutions. The “Design-Build” process also helps to remove any conflict that typically arises in material selection and construction details. Since both the architect and builder are from the same firm, the focus is on protecting your interests.

  • Budget Management

    • As a “Design-Build” team, we work closely with you to accurately conceptualize your completed project at an early stage. Continuous cost estimating during the design phase - rather than waiting until the bids come in - helps to keep the projects within a realistic budget.

    • By effectively communicating the cost implications of design decisions, it ensures that you, the owner, play a key role in determining the final project price. Once the scope of work has been finalized, the project costs are clearly defined and controlled by the “Design-Build” firm.

  • Better Communication and Faster Completion

    • The communication benefits of working with architect/builder at the same time ensures that potential problems are discovered before the project starts.  Design and construction details are being developed throughout the entire process, along with pricing, so questions and decision making happen at an earlier stage, while the focus stays on owner value.

Because of its inherent flexibility, design-build lends itself well to custom home projects. By combining the architecture and construction into one experience, the home owner realizes the benefits of “one stop shopping” at its best.


Be cautious of Builders who are not licensed Architects, but offer "Design-Build" or "Design Consulting" services. Typically, this means that the builder is hiring an outsourced architect to provide a stock plan that’s been replicated over and over, and which you have no control over.

Chaser Gaffney Architecture is an Architect-led Builder, which means we’re committed to the mutual goal of completing the project exactly the way it was designed at the highest level of quality, on time and on budget.


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