the “cut-and-try” approach
A local environmental-design consultant has developed an innovative
approach to the home-design process. Dr. Dwight Miller of Right
Home Consulting has developed techniques that lead to home designs
that are more comfortable for the owners, are environmentally friendly,
and save money. Based on commercial architectural programming, “residential
programming” is performed prior to design, and organically
builds an inventory of requirements for the home without any formulaic
assumptions. The result is a detailed design “program”
that is custom-tailored to the homeowners, specifying exactly what
needs to be included, based on their residential histories, lifestyles,
values, spiritual paths, cultures, and style preferences.
“It’s a win-win solution for homeowners and architects,
who, in many cases have given up on the residential market, says
Dr. Miller. “This approach can eliminate much of the long,
‘cut-and-try’ series of drawings that adds time and
expense to the design process. All of the requirements are stipulated
up-front, allowing the designer to approach the problem more efficiently
and holistically.” Dr. Miller writes the design program with
the concurrence of his clients after conducting interviews, questionnaires,
and other interactive activities.
His background in environmental psychology, and experience as an
ergonomist at Sandia Labs and Adjunct Professor at UNM’s School
of Architecture, allow Dr. Miller to assess the needs of his clients
on many levels. “We consider everything from the time someone
gets up for work, to the kind of house they lived in as a child.
We use thirty-seven proprietary dimensions that measure what clients
value in their home’s location, layout, privacy, etc. The
result is a detailed profile, kind of like e-Harmony for your home.”
The environment is also an important consideration. “The
process fits nicely into the LEED for Homes Integrated Project Planning,
which requires a project team and establishing green-building targets
for design and construction.” Dr. Miller is in training for
his LEED for Homes consulting accreditation, which will be made
available in November.
Why is he doing this? “I see a flawed system. We can do better.
The homeowner deserves a better fit than he is currently getting
for his dollar. I’d also like to attract architects back into
residential design, where their skills are needed. And, if the owners
opt to ‘go green,’ the environment benefits as well.”
To learn more about this innovative approach, call Dr. Dwight Miller
at (505) 934-6718, or visit www.RightHomeConsulting.com.