This is part of the “Value of an Architect” series. This one is: Fewer Repairs; Less Maintenance. An architecturally designed house can require fewer repairs and less maintenance. This is one of the reasons to engage an Architect to design your residence.
Some people think an Architect just makes things look nice. It is true; they do. However, they also detail and specify your project so that components and materials will last a long time and not demand much attention over the years. Isn’t that something that you want? Click here –> Why You Want an Architect , for more information on the value of having an Architect design your next residential project.
Less Maintenance; Fewer Repairs
We have all heard horror stories of people’s houses whose basements leaked water into them, whose roofs leaked, whose house blew away in a storm, whose walls rotted, whose materials became moldy and made them sick, or slid down mountains.
These are but a few of the reasons that should lead you to the conclusion that you need an Architect. No one else is in your corner as much as they are. They are not some construction person trying to substitute a cheaper material for the quality items specified. They are not trying to do anything except make you happy and design a quality residence for you that will last you the rest of your life.
The staff at the HOME ARCHITECTS have seen it all: improperly flashed (or unflashed) windows resulting in a total replacement of all exterior windows after only 7 years in the house, along with repairs to rotting walls under these windows ($50,000+), improperly graded sitework and lack of gutters or downspouts that results in undermined footings under houses, residences literally sliding down mountains due to improper foundations ($500,000+). These circumstance and more could have been avoided through the use of a licensed Architect designing your new house. Do not be penny-wise and pound-foolish. An Architect will help prevent these and other problems, saving you perhaps the entire cost of your house over its lifetime.
WALL SIDING REPAIRS & MAINTENANCE
A total wood siding replacement on a 3,500 HSF (Heated Square Foot) residence might have about 1,770 sf of siding material. At $4/sf, this could cost about $7,080 to replace. If this is done perhaps once every 15 years, over the 100 year lifetime of your house, this could have cost 6.67 replacements or $47,200 in unadjusted true-value dollars with no inflation. Did you know that your Architect can specify siding materials that can last the century-long average lifetime of your house? No replacing it ever.
WINDOW REPLACEMENT & WALL REPAIRS
If you (like the unfortunate family this firm helped deal with a total window replacement) would prefer to not have to totally replace your leaking windows every 7 years at a cost of $50,000 (including some repairs to rotting wood and decomposed insulation below them) = 14.2 potential window replacements x $50,000 today’s value dollars = $714,285 during your house’s 100 year lifespan, which is typically much more than you paid to have it built in the first place, this firm can help you avoid that.
Your Architect knows types of windows that should last for the lifetime of your house. In this example above, if you had a 3,500 HSF house for which you paid $150/HSF = $525,000 then the periodic window replacement over its lifetime could equal more than 1.36 times the entire cost of the house, over its century-long typical time span.
SEALANTS AS OPPOSED TO CAULKING
And how about all the joints in your house through which water can leak and rot your home, siding, windows, doors, insulation, roofing, structure and create mold and mildew and make you sick and destroy your house? Well, many construction people use the cheapest “caulk” they can find. Caulk, unfortunately is made for interior joints, as a filler. It washes away and decomposes in a brief time. “Sealant” is what Architects specify for the exterior joints in projects. Sealants are made of higher quality, longer-lasting materials than “caulk.” Your Architect knows this. Quality sealant lasts much longer than caulk. And properly specified and detailed sealants protect the vital joints in your residence much longer than any other material. In other words, having an Architect design, detail, specify and administer your project will result in joints that remain watertight far longer than if you had no Architect involved. This can mean the savings of possibly over $25,000 every decade for water leak repairs that can otherwise be happening right now in your house. Over the lifetime of your residence, this means that 10x$25,000= $250,000 in possible savings that you won’t have to make if you have an Architect involved in your project, indicating proper sealants to protect your house.
There are other items requiring replacement, like roofs, but we’ve already done a “Value of an Architect” assessment of that subject. Check that out here–> Value of an Architect: Roofing.
Let’s examine just the new Architect-designed, detailed and specified items so far and what it can mean for you in savings over the life of your residence:
1. Window Savings and related items: $714,285.
2. Siding Replacement Avoidance: $47,200.
3. Sealant Savings for protecting adjacent materials: $250,000.
Total century-long savings of using an Architect in terms of less maintenance on your house:
$1,011,485. In other words, your Architect’s involvement could save you over a MILLION Dollars over the life of your house, for just the 3 new items introduced during this particular article.
Note: this does NOT include the savings introduced during other Value of an Architect series articles.
For instance, here is another: click here–> Value of an Architect: Lighting.
Conclusion: how can you afford to not use an Architect to design your next residence?
Contact Rand@HomeArchitects.com to design your new house .