Frequently Asked Questions

We strive to offer transparent and comprehensive information to assist you in making informed decisions and to ensure your experience with us is smooth and enjoyable. If you have any additional questions or need further clarification, please don't hesitate to reach out to our dedicated team. Let's explore the answers to your frequently asked questions and embark on an exciting architectural journey together!

1. How does Architectural Overflow, LLC differ from an architect?
Architectural Overflow, LLC is a leading residential design services firm specializing in architecture. While we have a licensed architect on staff, our expertise lies in creating detailed structural and construction documents that guide general contractors and builders in constructing your home.

Unlike traditional architects who typically provide a complete set of specifications for custom homes, we empower you and your builder to make choices, granting you the flexibility to personalize your project and significantly reduce design costs. Our approach ensures a seamless and cost-effective design process for your dream home.

2. What 'styles' does Architectural Overflow, LLC design?
At Architectural Overflow, LLC, we have a diverse portfolio encompassing various architectural styles, making us versatile and experienced in catering to your design preferences. Our expertise ranges from timeless traditional homes to contemporary modern farmhouses, charming country-style homes, and cozy cottages.

3. What areas of the country does Architectural Overflow, LLC conduct business in?
Architectural Overflow, LLC extends its architectural services across the entire country. We have successfully collaborated with numerous clients in regions such as the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, the surrounding regions of Atlanta, GA, and other locations in the Southeastern United States.

4. Can Architectural Overflow, LLC recommend builders and general contractors?
Certainly! With over 20 years of experience in the industry, we have established strong relationships with reputable builders, general contractors, and skilled subcontractors. We are more than happy to provide you with valuable recommendations to support your construction process.

Moreover, Architectural Overflow, LLC collaborates closely with the esteemed Southern Living Custom Builder Program. This exclusive network comprises over 80 top custom home builders across the South. The builders in this invitation-only program are renowned for their exceptional craftsmanship, commitment to customer service, financial stability, and use of high-quality building materials. For more details on Southern Living's Custom Builder Program, click here.

1. How do I get started with architecture services?
To begin your architectural journey, simply give us a call or complete our contact form, and our team will be delighted to assist you!

2. What kind of timeline can I expect for my architecture project?
The timeline for your project is influenced by factors such as project size and complexity. Generally, customization projects take 3-6 weeks to complete, while custom design and mixed-use or commercial projects take 6-12 weeks. Of course, variations may occur due to factors such as project size, review points, and approvals from Architectural Review Boards (ARBs).

3. How is the total living square footage determined in architectural designs?
Total living square footage is calculated from the outside face of one stud to the outside face of another. It includes only the heated area of the house and excludes spaces like the garage, porches, storage areas, or future expansion spaces.

4. What is a PDF Plan Set in architectural terms?
A PDF Plan Set is a digital version of construction drawings formatted for printing on large paper, commonly 24" x 36". With this option, qualified architects and engineers can legally modify the design without redrawing the entire plan. It allows for one-time construction under copyright restrictions.

5. When ordering house plans, how many plan sets do I need for my project?
We offer four distinct plan packages: pricing set, 5-set construction plans, PDF plan, and electronic CAD files. If you plan to construct the home as drawn, the 5-set construction package provides sets for you, your builder, mortgage lender, insurance company, local building department, and subcontractors.

6. Why aren't detailed HVAC, plumbing, and electrical details included in architectural designs?
Local HVAC codes, climatic requirements, and commonly used systems vary widely across the country. For optimal results, your local HVAC contractor, plumber, electrician, and lighting designer assess the best layout for your new home based on specific regional requirements.

1. Will Architectural Overflow, LLC work from my design ideas and/or sketches?
Absolutely! At Architectural Overflow, LLC, we welcome your design ideas and sketches. You can either meet with us at one of our office locations or have a remote consultation over the phone to discuss and review your materials and design concepts.

2. We want to build "green." Can Architectural Overflow, LLC help achieve this?
Certainly! Our team includes qualified LEED Green Associates, well-versed in implementing the latest green building principles and energy-efficient design features. We are committed to helping you achieve a sustainable and eco-friendly project.

3. Does Architectural Overflow, LLC provide interior design services?
While interior design is not our primary focus, we do offer services for various interior design elements. For color selections, final design materials, and furnishings, we can connect you with some of our past clients to showcase our work in this area.

4. Can Architectural Overflow, LLC make changes to a pre-existing plan and customize it to fit my needs?
Yes! We are more than capable of customizing pre-existing plans to suit your specific requirements. Whether you want to add rooms, modify windows, or make any other design changes, our team is here to assist you throughout the process.

5. Can I get the house plans with a different foundation?
Yes, we can accommodate your preferences for the foundation type. If you'd like to change from a slab to a crawlspace foundation or any other type, feel free to contact us for an estimate and further assistance.

6. The plan I am interested in has a two-car garage, but I would like a three-car garage. Can Architectural Overflow, LLC make these modifications?
Certainly! Our team can modify the plan to include a three-car garage to meet your specific needs. For an estimate on these modifications, please get in touch with us.

7. How can I get a better look at the plans I am interested in?
To get a more detailed view of the plans you are interested in, we offer planning sets. These sets include all four exterior elevations and floor plans shown to scale. Though not for building purposes, planning sets allow you to gather bids from contractors, arrange furniture, analyze traffic patterns, and assess site lines on your lot.

8. Where can I see this design built?
Due to privacy considerations, we cannot disclose the location of homes built from our plans unless they are show homes open to the public. However, we can provide you with a portfolio of our projects to give you an idea of our design expertise and capabilities.

1. How does Architectural Overflow, LLC charge for its architectural services?
Our architectural service costs are based on various factors, including the size and complexity of the project. For new custom house plans and remodels, we typically utilize square footage as a basis for pricing. When it comes to design modifications, we often collaborate with clients on an hourly basis, ensuring flexible and tailored solutions.

2. What is the cost of a pre-drawn house plan in architecture?
Construction sets for pre-drawn house plans are typically priced around $1,500-$2,000. If you opt for plan customization, the total cost can vary between $3,000 to $15,000. Compared to hiring a local architect for custom design, which may require 4% to 12% of the total construction cost, pre-drawn house plans offer a cost-effective alternative for obtaining blueprints for your custom home.

1. Do I need to be concerned about building codes in architecture?
Building codes are crucial standards that ensure the structural safety of buildings. Your local government, typically through your city or county building department, establishes and enforces these codes. They are often derived from nationally recognized building codes such as UBC (Uniform Building Code), BOCA (Building Officials and Code Administrators), and CABO (Council of American Building Officials), while the IRC (International Residential Code) combines all three. However, specific regions may have additional regulations due to extreme weather or geographical conditions, such as earthquake-prone areas on the Pacific Coast or hurricane-risk areas on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. To learn more about residential building codes, visit the ICC's website here.

2. What if the architectural plan I want doesn't meet my local building code requirements?
At Architectural Overflow, LLC, we can make design adjustments to accommodate most building code requirements. If your area necessitates a seal, stamp, or specific engineering, you may need to engage a local engineer or architect to review and revise the plans to meet your unique building codes.

3. Do Architectural Overflow, LLC's house plans provide all the necessary information for obtaining a building permit?
Almost all required information is included in our house plans, with a few exceptions based on your construction location. Building departments typically require a site plan, indicating the house's placement on the property. Additionally, you may need beams sized to accommodate region-specific roof loads. Your home builder can usually assist with this. For properties not connected to sewer systems, a septic design attached to the application may be necessary. Moreover, local energy codes may require simple forms to fill out and attach to your application.

In certain areas of the United States, strict engineering requirements apply, particularly in earthquake-prone regions like California and the Pacific Coast, as well as hurricane-risk areas like Florida, the Carolinas, and the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. In these cases, hiring a state licensed structural engineer is often necessary to analyze the design and provide additional drawings and calculations as required by the local building department. To ensure compliance and determine specific requirements, please contact your local building department when obtaining a building permit.

​​​ Are you ready to embark on your own architectural journey? 

Let's collaborate and create something extraordinary together.