What Comes First?

What Comes First?

What Comes First is about how this nationwide custom home Architect starts their projects.

What comes first?  The short answer is Programming, however the longer answer is: actually a Site Walk is very first, then Programming.  Programming is the technical analysis accomplished during an interactive session between the Architect and the Clients.

what comes first
An on-site meeting with HOME ARCHITECTS for Clients, during the Site Walk. (C) Copyright 2015, Home Architect, PLLC, All Rights Reserved Worldwide. Click image above to see another related article about Site Walk.
























Programming involves about 2 to 5 hours during which the Architect begins by asking the Clients: “What do you want?”, then swiftly becomes a journey through most of the desired spaces, rooms, features, materials and site organization for the proposed custom house project.

Programming borrows from the Site Walk and its associated Site Analysis, assuming that the Clients approve of any site organization proposed in the Preliminary Site Analysis Report, previously prepared by the Architect.


The Architect either meets with the Client(s) in person, or via Skype (a free video conferencing software/application).


During this session, the Architect guides the Client(s) along through a Program outline for their house, mentioning the various spaces and features that many past Client(s) have requested, thereby allowing an efficient flow through the “rooms”, materials, services and other aspects of the proposed project.  Only licensed Architects seem to have the education and experience necessary to perform this complex task.  Through rigorous training, and decades of performing this task, the Architect directs the attention of the future homeowners to the site organization proposed, materials of construction (exterior and interior), what spaces or rooms will be in the house and what features, appliances, storage, cabinetry, windows, doors, views and other aspects these will have. 


The Client(s) will many questions and the Architect will supply the answers, confidently leading the group along the pathway of Programming. 













Programming does not involve design yet.  Programming is the verbal/written description of what the project will become.  The Program becomes the Bible that guides the Architect in his/her future design, so that such designs are based on what the Client(s) have said they want.


Without Programming, a project is doomed.  Many people try to design for others, only to hopelessly fail.  One of the main reasons is that they do not know how to Program a project.  Without a program, designing a house is like actors on a stage trying to make a movie without a script. There is no direction and they run around doing what they think is interesting, only to fall apart because the results do not respond to the Client(s) unspoken needs.  Architects listen to their Client(s), that’s one of the main reasons they Program: to understand what the Client(s) want.  Then, the ensuing design will incorporate what aspects they have disclosed.  That results in a logical and solid path along which to create a meaningful project based on Client needs, wants and dreams.



tags: what comes first, residential, Pigeon Forge, Sevierville, Highlands, Cashiers, Lake Toxaway, Hendersonville, Asheville, Atlanta, Lake Tahoe, Aspen, Telluride




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