A guide to adopting the Hampton’s style into your Australian home

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belford residence

Navigating estate design controls with an experienced Architect

November 22, 2018 Home Designs

Quite often, new residential subdivisions now include design controls as part of the planning requirements for new houses. The reason for the introduction of design controls varies with each subdivision and the developer’s or Council’s overriding objectives. For example, in some instances, the design controls aim to ensure a reasonable standard for houses to be […]

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architectural planning

4 crucial elements to consider when creating an architectural design brief

October 29, 2018 Home Designs

Image: Pexels Developing a brief for a new home is exciting. There are countless things to consider, including the placement of the house on the block, the size and position of rooms throughout the house, and even the colour scheme. However, when creating a brief for a new building, people tend to focus more on […]

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architect looking at plans

7 building sites that do not suit project homes

September 19, 2018 Home Designs

Once upon a time, all houses were custom built in a traditional manner by a local builder. Each site was assessed individually, if not from a design perspective, certainly with consideration of the building issues the particular site presented. The local builder would then bring his experience into discussion with the owner, offering advice about […]

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Mark's Point Residence

6 considerations to make before embarking on a home addition project

Before embarking on additions to an existing house, the deficiencies of the house and its siting must be carefully considered. From these considerations, it is possible to propose solutions that maximise the benefits of additions. These benefits could include increasing the value of the property, improving your lifestyle, or in most cases, achieving both of […]

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project homes

Characteristics, disadvantages & advantages of project homes

July 10, 2018 Home Designs

The prominence of project homes in the Australian housing market is a relatively recent phenomenon commencing in the 1970’s and growing through the 1980’s. Today, project homes account for the vast majority of freestanding houses built in Australian residential subdivisions. For the purpose of this blog, a project home is defined as a standard house […]

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caves beach renovation

13 renovation strategies to help reinvent your home

In this blog, we describe some of the strategies that can be used to maximise the benefits of a house renovation. These strategies are most relevant to our clients who are planning to stay in their home long-term and are focused on providing increased comfort and space for their families, rather than looking for a […]

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A guide to adopting the Hampton’s style into your Australian home

March 29, 2018 Architectural, Home Designs

    A guide to adopting the Hampton’s style into your Australian home:  The “Hamptons” style seems to be mentioned in every second article in current popular house media.  The frequent reference to this style has lead to a lot of confusion about what Hamptons style actually is, everyone seems to have their own interpretation.  Talking […]

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Designing regional homes vs city homes – What’s the difference?

March 8, 2018 Home Designs

What’s the difference in designing and building a house in the city vs a regional area? The houses we see published in magazines and featured on TV are generally the best examples from the major capital cities within Australia. These projects have set a high bar using the very best materials, finishes, with large spaces […]

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caves beach renovation

What elements do I need to create a modern kitchen design?

February 15, 2018 Home Designs

The prominence of the kitchen within our homes has undergone a dramatic transformation over the last twenty years – from planning and materials to appliances and lifestyle. The kitchen is now a major priority in the planning of any residence, given its location in open-plan living and dining areas. Traditionally, the kitchen was placed at […]

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incorporate a garage into your design

Incorporating a garage into an architectural design

January 23, 2018 Home Designs

A garage is no longer regarded as a basic shed to park a car. It can serve multiple functions – an occasional social space, an indoor gaming area, a place to practice hobbies, essential storage and sometimes even a place to park a car! Driveways and council requirements The garage is a high priority in […]

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designing a small house

How to design a small house

January 12, 2018 Home Designs

Australians now reportedly build the largest houses in the world (average floor area) –  even larger than the houses in the USA! Our houses have increased in size as we have become more affluent and seek to keep up with the neighbours. Before World War II, a typical family of six or more people lived […]

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residential renderings - mark lawler architects

How to pick external materials in your house design

January 8, 2018 Home Designs

A building’s appearance and performance are largely determined by the materials selected for the external elements: walls, roof, windows, decks, etc.  There are many factors influencing the selection of each element. This blog lists the main considerations, however, you should always seek specific advice for a project. With the selection of any external element the […]

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Architect explaining home design

How do architects charge for their services?

There are three main methods architects use to charge for their services. There are advantages and disadvantages for each of the three methods as summarised below.  The most suitable method must be discussed with each individual Client based on the particular circumstances of their project. Mark Lawler Architects can provide project specific advice to assist […]

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Architecturally designed home for a lifetime

How to design a house to last a lifetime

A house designed by an architect and custom built for an owner is a serious commitment to lifestyle and financial investment. A house of this quality will stand for many years and can serve several generations of a family. The design must cater for flexibility of occupation and have the durability to suit all stages […]

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architecture trends on murrays beach

Architecture trends: Following the crowd isn’t always the smart choice

What is “on trend” right now If you have seen an episode of “The Block” or other similar home renovation TV shows, there’s no doubt you will have heard the question: “What is on trend?”   Judges and contestants alike seem to be laser-focused on this concept as they try to heighten the drama by […]

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Can an Architect make a guarantee of success?

Can an Architect make a guarantee of success?

Some clients seek a guarantee that their project will be approved by Council or can be built into their budget at the very first meeting. Before a line has even been drawn, this is a tough request. Many other professionals face the same request for absolute certainty. You may be tempted to ask for a […]

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how are houses designed for the australian climate?

How are houses designed for the Australian climate?

October 18, 2017 Architectural

Australia is a large continent with a variety of climate zones. Under theNational Building Code of Australia (B.C.A.) eight climate zones have been defined: Climate zone 1 – High humidity summer, warm winter Climate zone 2 – Warm humid summer, mild winter Climate zone 3 – Hot dry summer, warm winter Climate zone 4 – […]

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how do australian building and safety codes impact my home design?

How do Australian building and safety codes impact my home design?

This blog article will run you through the different building codes in Australia, and how they will impact the design of your home. The primary building regulation governing the construction of residential buildings in Australia is the Building Code of Australia (BCA). The BCA is produced on a national basis. The intention was to produce […]

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wide block house plans

Wide block house plans

A house designed for a wide or an unusually large site can take advantage of design strategies that are not suitable for smaller, more restricted sites. This article examines the potential for some very exciting and innovative wide house block plans that are used in modern architecture. Orientation A key design aspect on any house […]

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5 reasons to choose an architecturally designed house

5 reasons to choose an architecturally designed house

There are many reasons why people choose to engage an architect to design their house. Transforming your vision into a brand new home is a challenging journey – When it’s done well, the results speak for themselves. This article explores a few of the reasons why an architecturally designed house can make a real difference. […]

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house plans for sloping blocks

House plans for sloping blocks

Sloping blocks have a reputation for being difficult and expensive when it comes time to bringing house plans to life. However, with the correct approach, a sloping block can offer opportunities that are not possible with a level site. It is important that the house design is specifically developed for the slope of the land, […]

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the architectural design process

The architectural design process

An architecturally-designed home is a collaboration on the part of many people. It is the coming together of ideas, with the process culminating in the creation of a unique, inspiring space that is ultimately an expression of you and your lifestyle. The architectural design process is unique for every project. It is initially determined by […]

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architectural vs ready made house plans

Architectural vs Ready Made House Plans

Ready made house plans, or the standard plans that are available from project home builders, are designed for standard, residential subdivisions. In these situations, the house is typically in the centre of the block, with small side setbacks. The living spaces face the street, with bedrooms and the family room opening on to the side […]

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design to construction – how long will the architect’s design process take?

Design to construction – how long will the architect’s design process take?

As architects, one of the first questions our clients ask is how long will it take to complete the project? There’s no standard answer because there are a number of factors involved in the architect’s design process timeline. Every building is an individual project, and every client has different requirements. There are a number of […]

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advantages of architect percentage fee pricing

Advantages of Architect Percentage Fee Pricing

The setting of fees and the valuing of architectural work can be somewhat complex. Every project for an architect is individual, requiring a different level of expertise and input, therefore, fee schedules can vary. It is common practice for many architects to set their fee for a project as a percentage of the total construction cost. However, an […]

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construction documentation - mark lawler architects

Construction Documentation

All buildings require construction documents to provide instruction to the builder on what is to be built. Construction documentation can range from very basic drawings (with or without a specification) through to fully complete drawings and specifications with comprehensive details and schedules. Generally the more unique or complex the project, the greater the need for […]

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interior design – how much input does an architect have?

Building Design Newcastle – How Much Input Does an Architect Have?

Sometimes clients are unaware of the role architects play in the interior design of a building. When looking at photographs of architect designed houses it’s often the subtle refinements of the internal finishings that make the house stand out. This can be the selection of fittings, colours and the details of the built-in joinery, which add the […]

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lake house

Lake House

A new home design on Lake Macquarie The Owners of this stunning home located on the southern end of Lake Macquarie, are semi-retired and divide their time between Sydney and their lakeside address at Summerland Point. They were searching for architects in Lake Macquarie and found us. We were commissioned to design a contemporary four bedroom house […]

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beachside apartments

Houzz

Houzz is a great website for collecting ideas on building and design… like an online scrapbook!

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what do architects do?

What do Architects do?

The Architects role in a construction project The Architect’s role during construction and the role of the Supervisor or Construction Manager both play significant roles in the construction of offices, residential homes and apartments. However these roles are fundamentally different, and often open to misinterpretation. Which begs the question: What do architects do? Let’s explain […]

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five things to consider about your home at christmas

Five things to consider about your home at Christmas

The Christmas break is a time when a you get to enjoy a well-earned break and spend some quality time with friends and family. It’s the time of year when it’s not uncommon to have lots of friends and family over for lunches, dinners whether it be a casual outdoor BBQ or extending the dinner […]

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Planning for a swimming pool

Planning for a swimming pool

October 17, 2017 Architectural

Having a swimming pool is a quintessential Australian dream. With our warm climate and sunshine, having a pool is an absolute must-have for a homeowner. There are a few things you need to consider when planning for a swimming pool. Things to consider if building a pool with a new home These notes serve as […]

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What parts of house design will affect resale value

What parts of house design will affect resale value

The following comments can apply equally to the construction of a new house and also to the renovation of an existing house. The emphasis will be slightly different in each case but the general principles will still be applicable. Kitchen With any new house design, our clients typically seek an open plan living/dining/kitchen space. The […]

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