How to Be a Professional Building Designer

How To Be A Professional Building Designer

If you dream of designing homes and other small buildings but don’t want to spend the years it takes to become a registered architect, then you may want to explore home design careers in the field of building design. The path to becoming a Certified Professional Building Designer or CPBD is achievable and rewarding for many people. As a building designer, you could be invaluable in assisting people not familiar with the construction and home remodelling business. Although you are not legally required to pass the same registration exams demanded of architects, you’ll want to become certified in your field. Even if your state doesn’t require certification, you’ll be more marketable with professional certification, just like medical doctors become board certified in a specialty after medical school.

A building designer is not the same as an interior designer — a building designer is concerned with safe structures that won’t collapse. The building design also is different from what is known as design-build. Although they are both types of processes, Design-Build is a team approach to building and design where the building contractor and building designer work under the same contract. The Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA) promotes and certifies this project management and delivery system. Building design is an occupation — a field of study taken up by a person who becomes a building designer. The American Institute of Building Design (AIBD) administers the certification process of building designers.

A Building Designer, also known as a Professional Home Designer or Residential Design Professional, specializes in designing light-frame buildings such as single- or multi-family homes. In some cases, as state regulations permit, they may also design other light-frame commercial buildings, agricultural buildings, or even decorative facades for larger buildings. Having a general knowledge of all aspects of the building trade, a professional building designer can act as an agent to help the homeowner through the building or renovation process. A building designer can also be part of a Design-Build team.

A designer who carries the title Certified Professional Building Designer has completed training courses, practised building design for at least six years, built a portfolio, and passed a rigorous series of certification exams. Receiving the National Council of Building Designer Certification (NCBDC) commits this building professional to standards of conduct, ethics, and continued learning.

Each state determines the licensing and certification requirements needed to practice architecture. Unlike architects, home designers are not required to pass the Architect Registration Examination (ARE) to receive a professional license. Completing ARE, administered by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, is one of the four steps to life in architecture.

The Average Costs to Build a 4 Bedroom House

You’re ready to start looking at building yourself a new home for the long haul. Maybe you already have a family, or you’re looking forward to settling down and having that extra space that only a four-bedroom home can bring. You’re probably wondering what the average cost to build the four-bedroom house of your dreams is going to be!

There is such a wide variety of home design options on the market today. Unfortunately, the cost to build a four-bedroom house estimates can vary drastically from home builder to home builder, and on top of this, you’re trying to determine your requirements for your dream four-bedroom home. It can send your head in a spin!

Home Design

Depending on who you talk to, a four-bedroom brick veneer home can cost anywhere from $1,000 – $3,000 per square metre to build.

This “dollars per square metre” rule is common terminology used by many builders and homeowners. The rule is calculated by dividing the total cost of the build itself by the total amount of floorspace in 4 bedroom home

designs (this is only the internal floorspace and not reflective of your overall plot of land). This measurement can be an important asset to remember when estimating the cost of various aspects of your four-bedroom home design.

Design is a determining factor in the overall cost of 4 bedroom house plans. For example, a larger custom-built four-bedroom house that has been built using high-quality fixtures and materials will invariably cost more than a simpler project-built four-bedroom home, complete with a set plan and design to adhere to during the build.

These set designs are fresh out of the tin, and as a general rule, these off-the-plan designs tend to be a great deal cheaper to build than a custom-designed four-bedroom house. Custom builders will tend to struggle when trying to compete with project home builders where it comes to cost-effectiveness, as they are selling you a unique product tailored to suit your individual needs. Having said this, it is still important to remember that all four-bedroom house designs are costed differently – which is all the more reason to speak with a professional builder when estimating your costs.

Another factor that can affect the overall cost-effectiveness of the average four-bedroom house size is the quality of the building materials used. Construction materials of lower quality can lead to the premature deterioration of your four-bedroom home and lead to eventual repairs, refurbishments or restorations later to your house later down the track.

The painting or finish of the home (low, standard or high) is another important factor in the average cost to build a four-bedroom house as products of a higher standard, such as a good binder, can protect your home from spillage or long-term issues such as mildew.

Sustainability Measures

When thinking over your four-bedroom house plans, it is vital to remember that your chosen builder will need to comply with any State and Local government sustainability measures.

Sustainability measures will vary from state to state and sometimes from council to council. But, generally speaking, sustainability is measured by all-new four-bedroom homes built in Australia through various basic energy efficiency and water-saving considerations.

It is also important to remember that these State and Local government sustainability measures will ensure that your four-bedroom home has been designed for the long term. It will cost you less in the grand scheme of things if you build your dream home using durable materials that stand the test of time but are also relatively easy to reuse or recycle.

By approaching the build of your four-bedroom home with these sustainability measures in mind, think of using the most efficient appliances within your price range for your kitchen to encourage smart heating and cooling. Another good example of a sustainability measure in your own hands would be considering house furnishings that minimize carbon emissions.

As a bare minimum, your builder should install reasonably high-quality insulation (in the roof and external walls of your property), and this insulation should maximize your energy efficiency. Other high-quality installations include roof sarking and “water-wise” water fixtures throughout your home, such as taps, showerheads and dual flush toilets. Some local councils will also insist on installing rainwater tanks which will take the pressure off your new home’s mains (drinking) water supply. Regardless of where you build in Australia, these sustainability measures will add to your upfront building costs.

Site Preparation

Regardless of the size and complexity of your four-bedroom design, site preparation costs will naturally come into play at an early stage in the building process. If your design has large features such as bedrooms, additional ensuites or extra living spaces, your site preparation costs will be increased exponentially.

It is important to consider that certain mandatory site infrastructure costs will be out of pocket expenses incurred before the work can begin on your site. Some of these essential costs to your four-bedroom home will include: obtaining a building permit and subsequent fees, the reporting from soil tests and the contouring of your land. Other costs to your new site will include construction and warranty insurance from your builder and the erection of temporary fencing for your block just before the commencement of your build.

Once your site has been flattened, levelled and stabilized, an AS2870-compliant slab will need to be poured as the foundations of your property begin to take shape. As a rule of thumb, concrete slabs will generally cost you between $70 and $120 per square metre (if we also include costs incurred from the materials used and the labour included). If your four-bedroom home design requires a thicker slab or your site is in an area that is difficult to access, you’ll probably pay more towards the higher end of our “dollars per square metre” rule.


One of the exciting aspects of building a home is choosing the floor coverings. There is such a huge range of floor covering materials on the market today to choose from, which vary in quality, durability and cost-effectiveness, including carpet, tiles, laminate, linoleum (lino), vinyl and Polished Concrete. Larger four-bedroom homes will have more floor space available, and therefore there will cost more to cover.

Due to the variations in price and quality of these floor coverings, costs can range widely. An overview of indicative flooring costs is set out below.

  • Carpet: $30 – $150 per square metre (Note – you may be quoted in broadloom metres, which are 3.66m x 1m)
  • Tiles: $30 – $150 per square metre (ceramic tiles are cheapest; stone tiles are more expensive)
  • Laminate Flooring: $20 – $100 per square metre
  • Linoleum (lino): $30 – $70 per square metre
  • Vinyl Flooring: $30 – $70 per square metre
  • Polished Concrete: $50 – $100 per square metre

6 Benefits Of Building A Custom Home

Building a home means much more than just building a house. Building a home means building a peaceful sanctuary, a place where you will go at the end of the day to forget about your stressful job, create memories with your loved ones, and hang out with friends.

When you choose to build your own home, you’re taking yourself and the entire household on a very exciting adventure. Of course, there’s going to be your fair share of ups and downs, but soon enough, you’ll realize that building your home from scratch is one of the best decisions you can ever make for your family.

That’s why your new home has to be special. It has to meet your every need and reflect your taste.

Here are six reasons why building a custom home is a much better option than buying one that’s already built.

A Variety of Options

According to a custom home builder in Houston, homeowners make all the decisions and choices, just guiding them. You can choose every detail, including floor and wall coverings, amenities, cabinetry trim, appliances, etc. Don’t you like granite countertops? You can have marble! Do you want lots of natural light? You can have a wall of windows. You decide every little thing that goes into your dream home.

Express Yourself

A custom home is a blank canvas waiting to be filled with your unique ideas. By collaborating with an interior designer and an architect, you’ll get a chance to design a home that reflects your taste, personality, and style. For instance, if you have a large collection of art pieces, you can have specialized lighting and big gallery walls. If you like having your morning coffee outside, you can put it in a big deck with a covered area and comfy outdoor seating. 

When your home fits your personality, you’ll find that you’ll feel happier at home. Rather than just somebody else’s home that you now happen to live in, it’ll feel more like your very own space. 

If you don’t build a home from scratch, going over so many different options of houses can be stressful. This is because there may be no home that’ll perfectly match your preferences. There will still be areas in the house that you want to renovate simply because it doesn’t suit your fancy. This can result in a home that may have lesser coherence since some areas will look different from others.

A better option would’ve been to build from scratch. By doing so, you can have what you need and want in your very own home. Working with a reputable builder, such as Hall And Hart Homes, can help you achieve this.

Maximize Functionality

Instead of struggling with a pre-existing floor plan and ending up with a semi-functional home, a custom home builder will help you maximize every inch of usable space. Whether you want a custom library wall, a staircase in the middle of the house, separate rooms or an open floor plan, your home will be adapted to your lifestyle and needs. Additionally, Barter Design recommends planning out the types and styles of furniture you’ll want to fill each room with to ensure that you’re using the space as best possible.

High-Quality Materials

When buying an already built home, you can’t be sure about the construction materials’ quality. Custom builders work with trustworthy vendors who provide high-quality materials and work. So when building a custom home, you can rest assured that only the best brands, products, and materials are being used.

Building a house means going for the goal of having a home to call your own for many years. You wouldn’t want to be forced to undergo expensive renovations regularly because the materials have deteriorated. 

Budget Control

Many people believe that building a custom home is much more expensive than buying an existing home. This isn’t necessarily true. When building a custom home, you decide how your new home is constructed within the limits of your budget. As a result, you can control the price point of every single thing that goes into your new home, from construction materials to special features.

Your custom home builder will consider your budget during each stage of the construction.

Choice of Location

Do you have a specific lot or area in mind? You can have it. Whether you want a secluded lot or you prefer being a part of a community, you can choose the perfect location for your new home.

Building a custom home has its perks. You get to choose whatever design you want. However, make sure that you have a concrete design you want to avoid construction hassles. Choose a builder that has the same vision as you to execute your dream house.

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