Wo-Built Inc: the Vision Builder

Design & Build Benefits

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What is Design & Build? Design & Build means that your general contractor is also responsible for the design. As a one-stop offering, it maximizes time efficiency, reduces changes and cost over runs. From the get-go, the contractor is responsible for cost estimates, project budget constraints, hiring designers or architects and cost planning and construction. That means mid-project price increases are kept at a bare minimum. Setting clear and visible targets, they keep the project running on-time and on-budget and their crews stay until the job is done. It’s in their best interest to finish a job as quickly as possible so they can get the client sign off.


How do I know if a Design & Build contractor is pricing accurately? The controls are built into the budget and cost estimate they develop during the initial discussions and consultation. Unless the scope changes drastically they are contracted to stay within those limits. The budget estimate which is developed during the detailed design is based on established fee structures and cost guidelines. Since they are involved in all the stages of the process, they assume some of the risks. They are stakeholders in their clients' projects. If the client still has doubts about cost validity, additional checks and balances can be introduced, such as an independent cost consultant, detailed fee breakdowns with negotiated percentages and fully disclosed and detailed change order pricing.


Why do people put risk the stress of traditional design and tender? The lure of getting a ‘better deal’ seems to trump ‘you get what you pay for.’ Sadly, they end up paying for such thinking. As soon as changes are made to the design (likely if the builder was not involved in the planning phase) or any problems pop up, the price pops up, too—often substantially. Also, low hourly rates mean little if it takes twice as long to plan and do changes, the result are major cost overruns.


Why don’t all contractors do Design & Build? It demands a lot more up-front work which is largely unpaid, yet subject to the possibility that the client will still ‘shop it around.’ Volume-building is popular among contractors, with multiple projects for multiple clients by multiple designers going at once. The goal is to maximize efficiencies and profits while offering low, low quotes. The problem is the incentive is too great to stretch each project a little here and there, usually at the client’s expense. As multiple projects compete for resources, it might take an age to do what should be really simple things; or, they simply cannot stick to schedules and delivery dates.


Why does Wo-Built do Design & Build? Many people have been on the receiving end of bad experiences with the traditional design & tender process. These experiences could have been avoided with a fixed end date, milestones of completed project chunks, measurement and reporting requirements for what's done and still outstanding—best practices that come standard with a Design & Build process, and always adhered to by Wo-Built.


Our emphasis is on customer satisfaction. If for no other reason than we also want a positive, stress-free experience that leads to repeat and referral business. A properly documented and executed Design & Build process is more customer-friendly and satisfying because it almost totally eliminates the incentive for stretching out your project's time or cost. It gives you the client a lot more influence and. By dealing with just one representative responsible for all areas of the project, confusion about who was supposed to do what, when that was to happen and who had to make the call is made very simple and direct.

Wo-Built designs and builds residential and commercial properties in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). We specialize in: