Category Archives: Home-Design

What kind of stairs are you allowed to build in your home?

stairs4_opt-300x1641One thing we have to keep in mind is that the Municipal Code plays a big role in the approval of your home design. The stairs are a vital part of your home and we need to remember they do need to comply.

There are standard clearances and dimensions commonly used which are the minimum required by the construction code like tread and riser minimum dimensions, or stair width but one thing people do not know which is worth mentioning here, is the importance of the stair style. Continue reading

Where to go for research

There are two main resources for research you can easily get access to: The City and County Building Departments have microfiche documents that you can review to find out more about the property in question.

For instance, at the City of San Diego Building Department, they have a Records Office on the second floor where you can go and do your own research. You have to make an appointment first, so someone can guide you on what you need to do to get the information you are looking for but once you get in, there is a lot you can find out about a property, parcel, neighborhood or even subdivision. They have maps for zoning, sewer and many other disciplines. They have documentation on the different developments in the city, and most important, they give you access to all those documents and even let you make copies of some documents if you follow their guidelines. Continue reading

Changes during construction

Be very careful when you or your contractor make changes on the site

As a professional dedicated to serving my clients, I do not seem to ever be prepared to watch the homeowners turn on me and the other consultants to side with their contractors. It is amazing to me how blind and deaf homeowners can turn over night.   picture-003_opt1

My job, while designing somebody’s home, is to guide that person through the entire design process and to make sure everything I show on the plans reflects what my clients want. Once the project is approved by the city or county, the contractor picked for the job by the homeowner needs to follow the plans approved by the officials. Those plans reflect what the homeowners want and the city and county stamps make those drawings legal documents. We, as designers, do not get paid to protect anybody from their contractors but we feel it is our duty to notify them when we observe irregularities at the job site. Continue reading