What are the Advantages to Design-Build?

Increasingly, design-build is the project delivery method of choice for contractors – not just in Charlottesville, VA, but throughout the United States. Many view this method of building or remodeling a home to be a significant improvement upon design-bid-build (“DBB”), which was the predominant method used for generations.

If this approach has one defining characteristic, it would be simplicity. Instead of there being multiple parties, all having different contractual obligations, there is instead a one-on-one relationship between the homeowner (you) and the design-builder. Another important thing to understand about design-build is that it simplifies risk allocation. With only one party bearing responsibility for both design and construction, there is only one to bear fault in the event there is ever a dispute. In other words, the design-builder assumes total accountability. The design-builder is the only party responsible for cost, construction schedule timeliness, and the quality of the finished product.

Other advantages include time savings, since many of the steps used in DBB are eliminated; cost savings, since there is closer coordination between the design team and the builders on the ground; and the inherent synergy of group collaboration. With design-build, everyone is on the same team. The owner and the design-builder form an alliance based on shared expectations and one that is continually strengthened by communicating frequently and out in the open. According to the Design Build Institute of America, nearly half of all major home improvement projects in the U.S. now utilize this method. Is it any surprise why?