FAQs

Q?

What does a Building Designer do?

A.

A Building Designer sees things from your point of view and puts many years of practical design experience into taking and shaping the client’s brief to a final concept.  A Building Designer initially interprets client briefs and prepares and develops sketch plans for the client’s consideration.  The Building Designer analyses the design, and prepares preliminary sketches and detailed instructions

Once approval is received from the client, the Building Designer prepares detailed architectural drawings and documentation, showing internal and external layouts of the building.  Prepares working drawings showing plans, elevations, sections, materials and finishes, as well as other aspects such as layouts, plumbing, drainage, car parking and landscaping

Liaises with relevant consultants (engineers, quantity surveyors, building surveyors, planning professionals etc) to ensure all aspects required for the project are adequately addressed.  Examines relevant codes and local council by-laws in the course of undertaking project documentation

Q?

What areas do Harvan Design service?

A.

We offer our services to the entire Melbourne area including Northern, Western, Southern & Eastern suburbs and have dealt with most councils in these areas.  We have completed projects from Yarrawonga to Inverloch & from Mansfield to Foster.  No area of Victoria is too hard for us so give us a call & let us help you out.

Q?

Is my house in a bushfire area?

A.

Bushfire zoning has recently been changed to reflect the possible risk of bushfire attack in areas of Victoria. Local councils can provide further information on these requirements.  Bushfire maps are freely available online & Harvan Design will determine your level of risk prior to starting your project.

Q?

Why use a BDAV member?

A.

Being a Building Designers Association of Victoria (BDAV) member, we provide a professional service, have up-to-date knowledge of industry issues, trends and regulations along with the experience and expertise to provide individualised designs to suit our clients’ needs.

Q?

Is a building permit required?

A.

Building permit requirements are now based on the scope of building work rather than the value of the building work. Now implying the need for garages, carports and pergolas to have a permit. If you are unsure if your project requires a permit feel free to contact us for clarification

Q?

Building permit details & process?

A.

Once you have lodged your application with a building surveyor, they will check for compliance with the regulations and can issue a permit with or without conditions. The building surveyor who issues the permit must follow the project through to the end, carrying out building inspections and issue an occupancy permit or a certificate of final inspection on completion of your building work.

Q?

Planning permit aplication & process?

A.

A pre-application meeting with council is the starting point and will provide a guide of councils’ opinions and may raise any concerns they may have. Lodging the application and having it allocated to a planner is the next step. The planner will carry out an assessment of the application. The application is then sent to advertising and objections can be lodged. The objections are then considered and the planner may take the application to a meeting for a decision or if possible, recommend an outcome for the proposals.

Q?

What is Rescode?

A.

Rescode is a guide to the application of 34 residential development standards in Clause 54 and Clause 55 of all planning schemes in Victoria. The purpose of this standard is to ensure a common interpretation and consistent application that applies to all dwellings across Victoria.

Q?

What are the 6 star energy requirements?

A.

A 6 Star energy rating (Thermal Performance Report) is required for all new homes, home renovations, alterations, additions and relocations in Victoria.  A 6 Star energy rating is about good layout, simple adjustments at the concept sketch stage, insulation adjustment and designing a house to suit the site.

Q?

Is my land in a flood prone area?

A.

Floods have recently affected large areas of metropolitan and rural Victoria. As such the flood zoning has been changed to accommodate the possible risks.  Local councils & the MMBW can provide further information on these requirements as they add 'Land Subject to Inundation' overlays in their planning scheme to susceptible areas.