When planning a room addition, many home owners forge ahead without consulting an architect. This can be a mistake, as architects plan a vital role in blending two spaces together.
You've probably seen a room addition that sticks out like a sore thumb. Perhaps the exterior materials don't match or blend with the original house. The windows have a different style and the roofline just doesn't flow properly. In many cases, these problems can be avoided with a good architect.
The Architect's Role
An architect is responsible for drawing plans for a renovation, whether it is a kitchen remodeling, a new front porch, or a room addition. The plans start out in a broad general sense and then are narrowed down to include details such as the size of each window opening and the width of each cabinet.
The architect should be focused on designing a seamless addition that looks as if it was built with the rest of the house. This can be tricky with old houses, but can be achieved through a creative use of materials, windows, rooflines and other elements. If visitors walk in and ask where the addition starts, your architect has earned his or her fees.
Among the key elements an architect will focus on are:
• Rooflines--a seamless addition starts from the roof and goes down. The materials should be the same and the pitch should be proportional to the main house.
• Windows--a key element, as they cover a lot of wall space. You want window styles and materials to remain the same throughout each part of the house. Details such as grilles and arches should be consistent.
• Exterior materials--while it is not always economical to match the original house, the material used on the addition should blend and be representative of the age of the house. You don't want new vinyl siding up against 110-year-old brick.
• Interior trim, molding--one way to blend two spaces is to extend the trim and molding from the old space into the new.
The architect plays an important role in crafting a room addition that blends with the rest of the house. Don't skimp on these fees or you might regret it later.
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