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How an Architect Designs Your Home: An Interview with Nick Hovick of Hovick Design

By Nick Hovick

Tell us a little bit about your firm and the services you offer.

Our mission is to harvest, preserve, conserve, enhance, embellish, complete, the work our customers desire.

What are some of the first steps you take when you're starting a new project for a client's home?

In the meeting phase we are sharing histories (HovickDesign and the Clients), and aims. The Clients begin the process of describing what is wanted: New Construction or Alterations Construction, Renovation, Remodeling, New Space, Reconfigured Space, Furnishings, Amenities. If there is prior design work (some customers begin working with one Architect or Designer and then move on seeking a greater feeling of "eureka!"). If not, we begin to explore Styles, Periods of Architecture, Uses of space, preliminary budget, past experiences of buildings that have moved us.

How do you come up with a home design that matches what the client wants and improves on it at the same time?

Coming up with the space is often surprisingly easy. Most clients have been thinking about their desired projects for some time. They've web-surfed, found pictures, styles that trigger feelings of discovery, and pleasure. The challenge is to draw out of the clients this information, and begin to identify all the characteristics they desire. Drawings, illustrated books, the web, local buildings ? all offer means of illustrating significant parts of the project.

Is there something that most people don't know about working with an architect that they should know?

Architects and designers vary widely in style and psychological availability. The client needs to determine before looking for a Design person what their chief aim is. Do they want to nurture a personal concept and get help in bringing it to fruition? Do they want to hand their personal needs to the Designer and be given a finished project with relatively little involvement. Some clients want a distinctive look, characteristic of a Designer's previous Works.

What are some of the biggest challenges that architects face when it comes to implementing their design during the construction phase?

The chief concern to me is the rapport between site foreman and myself. I need to know that the measurements, materials, and detailing I've provided will be properly identified and carried out.

What advice do you have for people who have a strong vision for their home, but with some unrealistic expectations given what they're working with?

For clients new to remodeling and building, I suggest that they begin with attractive photos. I'd urge them to think of spaces, furnishings, places that held special comfort and wonder for them as children. This will open up unexpected horizons for design discoveries. Finally, I would ask them to consider the mechanics of their materials: Material, Psychology, Site, Community. And remember, this is an exciting journey that can and will change your life!

What's the best way for people to contact your firm?

Get in touch with us through the internet (, or phone (831-236-7181) or (831-375-4949 phone and fax).

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About The Author

For 25 years, Nick Hovick has designed, managed and built sophisticated environments...

Phone: 831-236-7181

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