Sustainable construction and design go hand-in-hand with environmental awareness in the design of our buildings. It’s our way of thinking. Construction and housing use both put claims on people and environment alike. Environmentally conscious building and design involves making conscious choices in building materials and construction methods. High construction speed and short payback periods for energy-friendly solutions are vital.
We recommend allowing a reserve for specific energy and environmental solutions in your budget. Energy and environmentally conscious design and construction is an area where there is much to discover and much to gain. Since we are very active in this area we can help and advise our clients so that they gain a comprehensive understanding of the possible solutions. This way our clients invest in a healthier environment and cut down on exploitation costs.
Almost any building can be used again. Our experience with repurposing buildings has taught us that. This knowledge gives our clients great flexibility. No worries about possible users after you’ve designed, constructed and used a building. A solid noise-reducing limestone wall is just as easy to replace as an expensive, adjustable dividing wall.
Building and design is not just about solving functional problems – it also adds value. We find it important that a new building not only reflects the identity of our client but also enhances his image. There are more than enough bland buildings, with no character or identity, already.
A building or complex, designed and constructed by making clear choices is exciting, more functional and supports diversity. It helps users to cross boundaries and promotes an open mindset.
Budget and cost management is an integral part of the architect’s duties. Monitoring budgets is part of our daily work. For each phase of the project we make estimates that ensure everything stays right on budget.
Even once the program of requirements has been established there are, after all (!)still many decisions still to be made along the way. Allocation of the total fixed budget among the various aspects of the project (facade, main construction, installation design, etc.) needs to be watched closely and discussed in time to avoid budget overspends for this could jeopardize the entire project.
HM Architects monitors and supervises the budget in consultation with the client.
Note our track record: not one of our projects has ever gone over budget because of inadequate budget control and monitoring!
We fully understand the five factors that ensure efficient and effective cost control:
understanding the cost factors in the design;
quality of drawings and specifications;
knowledge of procurement methods and construction;
accurate preparation and supervision of implementation;
for the preparation of management budgets, we always work with a trusted, external, calculation agency.
Effective cost control starts with clear agreements. We stick to the following method:
We present various models in the first draft stage and make informed decisions together with our clients.
We review the plan at each stage, using the constraints of the component budgets, and at the specification stage, the management budget.
We maintain budgetary control by conducting special financial forecasts of different aspects of the final design phase. We also explore various financial alternatives to help us to successfully monitor the budget.
And, of course, we make sure that our knowledge in the fields of regulation, legislation and standardization is up to par with the current situation, not just in the Netherlands, but abroad as well.
From experience we know that the maintenance requirements of buildings can differ sometimes by a factor of three due to the design and implementation decisions taken (selected building form, details and materials).
When we design, HM Architects always checks the implications that the various design decisions will have on maintenance. Because the costs of maintenance form an important part of the total operating costs. In addition, the type of maintenance required will also predict its impact on the environment. This is all the more reason to assess the maintenance implications of designs.
Maintenance management starts on the drawing table. HM Architects keeps a sharp eye on the following two aspects:
Maintenance-efficient design: you don’t need to maintain what isn’t there
Maintenance-friendly design: optimizing maintenance with regard to management, costs and organization.
HM Architects has extensive experience with the realization of housing projects certified by Woningborg, GIW, Woonkeur, Politiekeur, and so forth. Because of this our well-equipped library of solutions will be certified and accepted by the Institute for Guarantees.