What Are Some of The Benefits of The New Home Design Process?

Are you considering buying a new house for you and your family? Why not consider building a new home? There are many benefits to building a new home for you and your family. It is important, however, to work with an experienced custom home architect. Building a new home allows you to fully enjoy your new home rather than settle for a home that does not meet all your needs.

Fully Customizable

You are in charge which means that you get to make final design decisions. Not every home works for every family. A new home design allows you to design a home that will work for you and your family. You can decide if you want an open concept home or if certain areas of the home need more privacy than others. When you decide to take advantage of new home design services, you can ensure your home will be what you want it to be.

No Immediate Renovations

With a newly built home, there are no immediate renovation costs. Normally when you buy a home on the market, you have a thousand ideas for renovations running through your mind. Those costs add up. With a new home, you do not need to worry about spending money on renovations. You are simply building the house as you want it. In addition to this, everything in your home can be brand new.

Energy Efficiency

When you build a new home, you have the ability to choose the newest and most energy-efficient appliances. With a new home, your house will be insulated properly and with the latest technology. A custom home architect will ensure that the house is built so that it is energy efficient and will not cost you extra money in energy bills.

A Home You Will Love

One of the largest benefits of the new home design process is the finished product. A home you will love. The professionals at JMKA | architects are happy to offer our new home design services to those in the greater Greenwich, Stamford, & New Canaan, CT areas. If you are ready to take advantage of the new home and architectural design services that our custom home architects have to offer, give us a call. Our team has many years of experience and we are ready to help you with your next custom home design project.

We’re Being Featured in The MODERN RESIDENCE

We are proud to share with you our profile in the upcoming book, The Modern Residence. This book contains profiles of one-of-a-kind contemporary homes crafted by the nation’s leading architects, and we are proud to be among the featured professionals.

Please feel free to share this book with your social network. You can also secure a printed copy of this book from us or at bookstores or on Amazon in the upcoming months when it publishes.

View our interactive profile

Choosing the Right Design for Your New Construction Home

Choosing to build your house from scratch means having the opportunity to create the home of your dreams and the chance to create something totally unique to you and your lifestyle. With that tremendous benefit, however, comes the added burden of myriad different details and decisions. Chief among them is the design of your new construction home. The considerations are nearly endless, and the process can begin to feel overwhelming before you’ve even started. To help lighten the load, we’ve scoured the internet in search of design experts and asked them to contribute their best tips for choosing the right design for your new construction home. Whether you’re in Houston or Newport, read on to discover design insights from the best of the best!

Timothy Giguere and Shannon Alther, TMS Architects / Interiors: Just because it can be done doesn’t mean it should be done. Creating a focal point in a room can help define the space…not four major focal points. Other design elements should create a hierarchy for visual support and avoid morphing into chaos with too many areas to take in. Simple over busy typically translates to a more elegant design solution.

There are three critical parts to any project design. Budge, size (square footage), and style. The owner can pick two of these to influence but the architect needs the remaining one. Pick any two…

Jeff Kaufman, JMKA | architects – Westport,CTGood Materials do not go out of style.  We look to create a timeless design that will appeal to multiple generations.

Douglas VanderHorn, Douglas VanderHorn ArchitectsHire a good architect!  In the post-Amazon economy, buyers are bargain hunting like we have never seen before.  This often pushes people toward builder-designed spec homes that lack in quality and detail.  Your home is your shelter and your sanctuary that you build a life around; make sure it’s a special place that you’ll be happy to return to daily.

Terry Phelan, Principal Architect, Living Shelter Architects:

  • Consider the ways nature interacts with your site and how your design can respond to those gifts. This includes sun, wind, water, and trees.
  • Future-proof your home with energy efficiency that meets resilient 2030 code requirements and an accessible layout for life changes that can happen any time.
  • Be open to exploring a design that accomplishes your goals differently than you imagine, especially if it uses space and light more effectively.
  • If you have a large enough property to have a choice of building sites, consider building on the most unattractive spot and retaining the most beautiful to enjoy from your new home.

Thomas J. Towey, CEO, Komorous-Towey ArchitectsDesigning a custom home is a rare opportunity. Take the time to think about how you want the new home to feel. Is it a clean, sharp look that lets you relax just being there, or richly detailed, warm wood enveloping the spaces? Think less about the number of rooms (the easy part) and more about the spaces inside. Raise your ceilings but watch out for hard-to-heat double-high spaces.

Katie Hoke, Principal, Porch Light Plans:

1. Set a realistic budget and schedule. The DIY shows are pure entertainment and do not reflect the amount of time and money required to fully execute a successful new build, renovation or addition.

2. Work with the professionals. The initial expense of hiring design, engineering, and skilled contractors will pay off in the end product when your project is realized on time and on budget.

3. Create a list of priorities. Everyone has a budget, what are the must-haves in your project and what items can be dropped. Communicate this with your partner and team at the beginning of the project so that everyone can work together towards the same goal.

Laura Cripe, Moss Design: An often overlooked area when designing homes is the connection to the outdoors and backyard space.

Whether it’s an addition or a remodel, we like to think of the project as more of a convergence, a fusion of the yard space and the principle structure versus just an add-on. Many additions are often constructed without taking into account the complete vision for the house and its site as a whole. In our approach, we want to think of the entire property and its interior space as a comprehensive, cohesive project, utilizing the space so as to merge, flow, and connect with all the combined elements.

We focus on connecting the house to its available yard, often updating and installing floor-to-ceiling windows permitting the optimum amount of natural light to the interior and direct access to the backyard space for a better connection to nature and ease of access so it becomes more usable space.

Heidi Denney, Home Designing Service, Ltd.: Whether you’re building a new home or renovating your existing home, many people believe they need an architect to turn their vision into reality. In Connecticut (and many states), a Certified Professional Building Designer (CPBD) is qualified to meet your needs often at a lower price.

Steven Perce, bldg.collective: Creating a home begins with tapping into ideas and memories collected over a lifetime and we urge clients to go beyond the simplest resources for inspiration and influence. Inspiration can come from anywhere- travel, childhood experiences, books or artwork. Try to remember that this is your home and a unique, well-designed home can inspire not only yourself but the community around it as well.

Juintow Lin, FoxLin Architects:
  • Meet with different architects. It’s important to like the portfolio of work by the architect but also make sure you like him/her. You will be spending a lot of time with your architect, so a good relationship is key.
  • Check the portfolio of the architects you are thinking about interviewing. Do all the projects look the same, or do they look like they adapt their style to the needs of their client?
  • Every good project has a good story or narrative. Try to think of the one thing that is most important to you, whether that be indoor/outdoor living, visibility from one space to another, sustainability etc.
  • In order to get the best design results, it helps to choose a few pictures of projects you like. These can be abstract concepts such as light/air/openness, to specific features like front doors or stairs.
  • Try to bring in the contractor during the design phase. Their experience is invaluable and it’s too late to make changes at the end of the design process. It’s recommended to show the design to some contractors at the end of Schematic Design or Design Development to get an opinion of probable cost.

Christine Boles, Beausoleil ArchitecteAs the climate crisis intensifies, we all need to do all we can to build sustainably and use clean electric power generated on-site. Look for good solar exposure especially towards the south and west. Additionally, did you know that most homes lose 7-10 times the ENTIRE volume of air in the house every hour through small leaks at windows, electrical outlets, etc.? Ask your architect about new construction methods for air sealing.

Joshua Hogan, AIA, Hogan Architects + Development: Lighting is the most fundamental consideration when designing a custom home. Designing a building around solar orientation introduces many opportunities to utilize sunlight to create a vibrant and comfortable home.  Considerations such as the placing and sizing of windows or doors, and connecting interior and exterior spaces can fill a room with natural light that leads to positive health effects — it also has favorable thermal impacts on the building, helping reduce energy consumption.  For example, integrating landscaping elements such as a vine trellis or green wall provides dappled light as well as creates a thermal barrier to harsh sunlight.  Facade systems that are designed with solar orientation in mind can shield direct light and heat during certain parts of the day and provide soft, reflected light to fill a space.

Aric Gitomer, Aric Gitomer ArchitectAre you looking to build a new home? Is this your first home? There is a big difference in someone creating their first home for their current
situation and whatever the future may hold such as a growing family, in-laws sharing your home, etc. versus a seasoned homeowner looking to downsize or upsize. Every future homeowner has a unique set of criteria to address in regard to their personal circumstances.

The key to a successful residential design is observation. Analyze your needs current and future and determine a hierarchy of must-haves, would be nice to haves, but not necessary. Once you have accomplished this epic task the communication with your architect is also essential to a successful outcome. The architect you select should be an excellent listener and interpreter as well as a negotiator between spouses at times. It is their job to create your vision by taking all the bits and pieces you feed them and realizing them into the design of your home.

Schwarz Lewis Design Group Inc.: Garage location and sun orientation are the two things that we look at first. Locating garages on the north or east side of the house will maximize light exposure and help create a sunlit healthy home.

Nikki Tubbs, Lead Designer, Regency HomebuildersTrends come and go (quickly these days!), so it is important to fill your space with selections you love. Choose colors and finishes that make you light up when you see them and keep it overall neutral with pops of your favorite colors and/or textures. Remember, your home should be uniquely you—and that alone will make it spectacular!

Michael McLychok, Principal, Director of Design, Tropical Architecture GroupSince we specialize in Tropical Architecture, the most important thing for new homeowners to know is that designing for humid tropical climates is very different than for dryer climates. Considerations in material selections that won’t mold, warp, peel off, or in general be high in maintenance are one of the first areas that make a difference in maintaining a tropical home and it’s longevity. Another consideration is designing for good airflow. The way in which the home is designed should be open to the tradewinds to help keep the home naturally cool as well as for that a pool, BBQ, and firepit are positioned properly. Roof structures and lengths of eaves can also keep the sun off your home so that you don’t have to constantly use air conditioning. Another typical mistake that people make is selecting appliances that aren’t serviced on their island.
What we encourage is for someone wanting to design a home in the tropics, to work with an architecture firm that knows what works and what doesn’t work for tropical climates.

Daniel Schmeling, Architect and President, Carbon Architects, LLCSpend at least 30% of your time in the programming stage of design.  The more specific you can be about what you want/need (the problem you are asking your architect to solve), the more focused your architect can be during the design phase.  Programming is problem finding, design is problem-solving.

Elizabeth Peterson, Ames-Peterson International Architecture & Interiors: Our philosophy has always centered around having our clients work closely with their architect and project management team from day one so clients feel included in every step of the design process. This means regular design review meetings discussing plans together so we can best translate our client’s fantasy into reality. Gone are the days of having one initial meeting with your architect and having your home mysteriously designed behind closed doors only to be underwhelmed with the result. This more efficient and collaborative design process empowers our clients while we guide them through the often complicated design and permitting process.

Joyce Owens, FAIA RIBA, Architecture Joyce Owens: When commissioning a custom home it is imperative to address the needs and budget of the client, the climate and the site. A good architect will specifically consider all of these issues, resulting in a project that is designed and tailored for the client and, more cost-effective, less hassle, and lower maintenance costs.

Michael Pelletier, Fairmont Custom Homes: Design Tip: Have an inventory of existing furniture and/or equipment you will be moving or buying for the home in design.
Site Visit: Be sure to invite the architect to visit the site. Not all architects/designers will offer to visit the site and we believe this is a crucial part of designing a home.

Francisca V. Alonso, Co-Founder and CEO, AV Architects + BuildersAs architect-builders we have the ability to control the cost during the design phase and protect the design vision during the build phase. For our clients, this value gives them unparalleled peace of mind. They know upfront what the investment is going to be in their new custom home and they also know that they have the architect managing the project during construction. It’s a turn key delivery with single-point of contact – no hand off.

It is very hard for our clients to imagine what their unique modern home will look like by just looking at plans and elevations. To avoid surprises in construction that can lead to change orders which no one likes, we use a 3D software tool that allows our clients to virtually tour their home before it’s built. This helps them visualize the home when in the design phase. It also helps our build team price the home accurately as they see the 3D Model of it upfront.

Gerrit Szeszycki, MEng, Architectural Designer, BrightleafI really feel like people are more worried about their resale value. They need to put what they want into their dream home, instead of worrying about what others want when they sell it.

Forget the trends. Do what you love. Follow your heart and make your home an extension of your personality.

Rosario Mannino, AIA, Mannino Architecture + DesignFirst, think about the big picture; the neighborhood, the lot, and unique site characteristics. Then, focus on all facades, not only the front in isolation; evaluating solar orientation, use, and privacy. Finally, you are ready for details; considering material authenticity being true to its form and function.

Why Hire a Custom Home Architect?

Are you currently in the process of purchasing a new home or would like help designing the house of your dreams, and don’t know where to start? There are many benefits to hiring a custom home architect, some more obvious than others. Continue reading below to learn more.

Custom Design

First, and most obvious, a custom home allows you to create a structure that reflects your exact wants and needs. Many real estate companies advertise homes to you by telling you what you need instead of listening to what you want. Everyone’s preferences are different, and we are well aware of that at JMKA | architects. By working with our architectural design team, you are getting the most out of your investment by doing the job right the first time!

Save Money

While it initially may seem like a large investment, by hiring a custom home builder you’re paying for a team of architects, designers, and contractors all in one. JMKA | architects works with you to design your dream home, then works with our dedicated building team to make sure the final product is completed within budget and on time. This eliminates the need for you to go out and find each position individually to hire, which can therefore save you time and money.

Single Point of Contact

Because your team is all coming from one place, the stress of going between designers, architects, and contractors is no longer a concern. You will have a single point of contact to address every concern as it arises during the construction process.

No More Pricy Remodels

If you’re developing a custom home specifically designed to suit your needs and lifestyle, it’s unlikely you will need to make major adjustments to your home in the future. Therefore, you are saving money by eliminating costly future remodels. Maybe you’d like an additional 4 feet of space in your bedroom, or would like to add a bathroom to the guest room? No problem! The architectural team at JMKA | architects will take the time to ensure your specifications are handled with care from start to finish through our connected team of builders.

Technical Knowledge

Not everything you might want in a home will be architecturally feasible. Our team has the technical training and knowledge base necessary to help you come up with a design that suits your needs and is possible to build.

 

New Home Design for Greenwich, Stamford & New Canaan, CT

JMKA | architects is the premier choice for new home design and custom home creation throughout Greenwich, Stamford & New Canaan, CT. We work closely with our clients and team of builders, consultants, and craftsmen to create a home that combines both the client’s wants and a knowledge base that has been honed through years of technical training and hands-on experience. Visit our Projects page and Closeups page to see what we’ve worked on in the past, both exterior and interior. Contact us today for customized architectural work at an affordable price.

JMKA | architects Lecture series 2015

JMKA | architects Lecture Series 2015

October 3 @ 10AM: Cultivating Great Public Spaces

Leslie Creane, Architect/Planner speaking on “Cultivating Great Public Spaces” and winning planning and zoning approval and land use planning. She has extensive experience working in both the public and private sector. An out-of- the- box problem solver, Leslie is committed to making a better world for our children’s children. Ms. Creane is president of Creane & Company and is also Town Planner for Hamden, CT. She is a graduate of Cornell University and the Yale University School of Architecture.

November 12 @ 6PM: TALK-ON-HOW-TO-CREATE-BEAUTIFUL- HOME-DESIGNS-IN-HARMONY-WITH-THE-ENVIRONMENT-

Justin-Quinn, Studio Director of Greenwich based Herman-Doyle Design Associates, will deliver a presentation on his award winning creative design philosophy.

Justin will also discuss the importance of working closely with other professionals involved with the job, particularly the architect, to create a shared peaceful, and soothing vision that blends with the house and its surroundings.  He believes in the essence of botanical diversity, using native, natural and organic plantings.  The discussion will emphasize his approach to both traditional design and modern esthetic, and how he determines style when beginning a project.

November 21 @ 10AM: WHY NEW CANAAN’S GLASS HOUSE FASCINATES AND INSPIRES

Greg Sages, Executive Director of the Phillip Johnson Glass House in New Canaan, will provide insights and information on this historic house at the final talk of the WHS Architecture Design Series, sponsored by JMKA|architects, on Saturday, November 21, 2015, from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Mr. Sages will provide details and explain exactly why the Glass House continues to fascinate visitors today, over 65 years since it was first built.

Many people lack understanding of this remarkable and unique home, even those who have visited the site. He will also elaborate on the rich history of its 89 acre property. Mr. Sages will also highlight the strong preservation initiatives undertaken to ensure the area’s survival for years to come.

In addition to JMKA|architects, additional sponsors of the lecture series include New Perspective Cabinetry and Tallman Segerson Builders.

 

 

 

IT’S NOT SO BAD LIVING IN A GLASS HOUSE – AS LONG AS YOU PRESERVE IT

It is my distinct pleasure to be the guest speaker on behalf of the JMKA|architects’ Discussion Series at the Westport Historical Society. As the Executive Director of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s landmark Philip Johnson Glass House in New Canaan, CT, l am charged with preserving and restoring the 14 structures on 49 landscaped acres and our permanent 20th century museum quality art collection.

The four principal structures are more than 45 years old. Significant effort and money is being expended and will continue to be expended on preservation and restoration across the Glass House campus. Over the last few years, we replaced the roof on the Painting Gallery, dredged the pond and completed a number of lesser projects. We recently embarked upon a complete restoration of the Sculpture Gallery. Upon its completion, the Sculpture Gallery will again reflect the incredible architecture and visual effects Johnson saw and loved in Greece.

This project, and others to come, are essential to continuing this truly unique American landmark’s role as a canvas for inspiration and experimentation honoring the legacy of Philip Johnson (1906-2005) and David Whitney (1939-2005).

I am grateful to Jeff Kaufman and JMKA|architects, the Westport Historical Society as well as sponsors New Perspective Cabinetry, Tallman Segerson Builders and Shoreline Painting for having me as their speaker.

“To every aspect of our project, JMKA brought experience, imagination, and a commitment to getting all the details perfect. They knew what we would want before we knew it ourselves.”

“Jeff has a real vision for how a space can be transformed. Even after I saw the gorgeous results, I still couldn’t believe how he could have visualized the possibilities.”

Testimonial

” I have to tell you, the work is looking so beautiful, we have had our neighbors stopping by to admire the design!  Thank you so much for creating it for us”