Needs & Options Review

The Problem:

It is not uncommon for people to know what they want to build, and have thought about it quite a bit – but just don’t know how best to start…

Or worse yet, launch into  expensive design services without  carefully establishing the groundwork and correct parameters for their project.


The Promise:

 “A surgeon wouldn’t operate without a proper diagnosis, so… ”

The initial step of NEEDS AND OPTIONS REVIEW works in the same way. It will allow you to start an exploration process designed to precisely understand your requirements, potentials and possible roadblocks, then gives:

  • Findings and Recommendations;

  • A Plan to move forward;

  • A Timeline and Rough Order of Cost.


The Process

We developed this process as we came across many clients and projects which lacked a clear understanding of the implications with respect to design and cost feasibility. We saw the issue in these projects, of people starting design and construction BEFORE they had fully done their research and homework. BEFORE they had critiqued their ideas.


We think this applies across the construction industry with people trying to run before they have mastered the walk.


The consequence of inadequate upfront research of needs and options is like… building a house on a bad foundation.


The foundations are the most important part of the whole house, because everything is built upon it. It’s very expensive to change the foundations once you have started to build upwards. But it’s very easy to change if they are simply lines on a plan.


So… we spend a little more time on the research than most other firms who rush their clients into the design phase.


When considering building, remodeling or addition to you home, Needs and Options Review with Hamid Kashani of Habitat Architecture is the first step.

Why… ?


  • Obtain a registered architect’s opinion on the feasibility of the project, one who is experienced in the type of project you’re facing, with minimal initial investment.

  • Produce an outline brief that provides the “DNA” for future work, detailing rooms, connections, orientation etc...

  • Discuss potential solutions at a high level that encourages ongoing testing of ideas – “Design Thinking”

  • Review and research local zoning requirement and building codes

  • Discuss the ‘looks and feel’ of a potential scheme

  • Discuss the functional viability of the project, your ideas and defining scope of services needed.

  • Discuss and review preliminary rough order of cost estimate of construction for budgetary usage

  • Discuss options and relative fees to perform various architectural services, based on the established scope of work.


A surgeon wouldn’t operate without a proper diagnosis… our initial

Needs and Options Review works in the same way.


It starts with a strategy, designed to precisely understand your specific situation and requirements, and then give findings and recommendations, a plan to move forward with a timeline and rough order of cost, to assist with your budget outlook.


What do you get?

With minimum initial investment you can expect to receive the services, briefly outlined below:


  • Meet on-site & discuss the project

  • Review current functions & design

  • Building and zoning code review and research

  • Clarify issues; discuss options and current thinking

  • Clarify project aims & vision; themes & drivers

  • You provide: existing site & background information (plans, survey, photos, etc)

  • Explore potential spatial relationships, connections & orientation options

  • Meet, present and discuss options

  • Credit for this service will apply to your total design fees.

  • Additional charges may apply for travel time outside 20 Miles radius.

Prairie Lake Home

Choosing an architect isn’t easy.



You need the right architect who has the specific skills for your type of project. The right ‘fit’ between you and your architect is key.



… this may or not be me!



In our experience the best way of finding out whether we are the right ‘fit’ is to fully understand what you are looking for. This is achieved through and initial consultation and our Needs and Options Review.



If for some reason we then discover that we are not an ideal ‘fit’ then you are free to take the review report to another designer for them to continue the process.