Architect Design Advice Kit

The Value of Our Design Advice Service

Buying a Home, Lifestyle, New Homes, Renovations, Services
Architect Design Advice Kit

Design Advice Kit


At dion seminara architecture, the first of the 6 steps in the design process is our design advice service.

But what is the design advice service, and how will it bring value to your project?

In this article, we will be discussing the various benefits of the design advice service, and showing you why it pays to get professional input at the start of your project!


What is the Design Advice Service?

The Design Advice Service is the first step of our process, and is where we explore the approaches we can take to maximise your project outcomes.

Here are some of the benefits the design advice service:

  • You will orally receive a registered architect’s opinion on the feasibility of the project.
  • We will discuss design solutions when it comes to room details, sizes, orientation etc.
  • We will discuss how to maximise the lifestyle outcomes of your indoor-outdoor areas, and how we can improve the enjoyment you receive from your home through external works and landscape design.
  • We will cover potential solutions at a high-level.
  • You will receive the opportunity to discuss the ‘look and feel’ of potential schemes with an architect.
  • You will get to discuss the functional viability of the project, and your ideas.
  • You will get to discuss the planning and legal viability of your ideas, as well as any building regulation requirements.
  • We will orally give you an idea of building costs and budgetary needs.
  • You will be left with our “Design Advice Kit” – a kit containing informative materials to help with your home design.


The Value of Our Design Advice Service

3D Render of our Worongary Luxury Home Concept Design


Above all other benefits, the real value of the design advice service is the ability to receive a trusted expert’s opinion on your proposed ideas, before you start spending money or time on your project.

By booking a design advice service, you are buying the peace of mind that your project is viable, suitable, and will improve the lifestyles of all who live in it.


Do You Offer Free Design Advice Services

Biophilic design - Toowong Exterior

3D Render of our Toowong Home Renovation


Our Design Advice Sessions are a paid service.

Unfortunately, free advice is often worth what you pay for it – nothing!

With that being said, if you are simply looking for a high level overview on whether or not your project is viable before investing any time or money, our principal architect Dion is always happy to offer a complimentary 15 minute phone chat about your project.

This quick chat will give you the chance to find out whether or not your project will be viable, and whether it is worth investing in our design advice service.

If you would like to arrange one of these complimentary chats, simply fill out one of our contact forms and we will be in touch!


How Will the Design Advice Service Benefit My Project?

3D Render of a Concept Design

3D Render of an Architect Designed Home Concept


The main benefit of the design advice service can be summed up in one word – honesty!

A major benefit for clients who engage with our design advice service is that since our time has been paid for, we are focused on providing honest and ethical advice in a consultant capacity.

It is important to note that when companies offer free meetings to discuss your project, they are often heavily motivated to push for sales, rather than to provide honest feedback about your project.

The payment structure of our design advice meetings at dion seminara architecture mean that:

  1. Our time is paid for, and as such we treat these meetings as a consulting service rather than a sales pitch.
  2. We are able to provide complete and honest feedback – we will not try to push you into pursuing services or ideas that will not be of benefit to you, or your lifestyle.
  3. The cost of our design advice sessions are refunded in full if you book one of our complete services after the meeting.

The outcomes clients receive from their design advice session can vary greatly, however I thought that it might be useful to share some examples of the benefits previous clients have received from the service.


Doggy Door to Complete Home Overhaul

When the clients of our Ascot Home Renovation approached dion seminara architecture, their initial scope was simply to find a design solution that would accommodate their desire to keep their 2 Dachshunds contained in certain areas of the home.

Ascot Home Renovation - Dogs

2 Very Lucky Dachshunds enjoying this Ascot Home Renovation


While many people would never even consider approaching an architect to design a doggy door, these much loved pups had a history of attacking architraves and skirting, and the owners decided that a more robust design methodology was needed.

Through talking to the clients, dion seminara architecture discovered that the liveability of their home had great potential, and that there were more ways in which we could improve the lifestyle outcomes of the project.

After providing the clients our analysis of the ways in which their home could be improved, the scope was gradually increased until a complete overhaul of the home was planned.

Although the clients may have only approached dion seminara architecture for a doggy door, our advice meant that their home became the contemporary, stylish gem that it is today.

You can read more about our Ascot renovation project here.


Change of Approach

Ormiston Home Concept

Ormiston Home Concept Design


Another great example of the value provided by our design advice service is the story of our Gold Coast renovation project.

After contacting dion seminara architecture looking for a design solution to effectively merge the 2 apartments they owned, Dion discovered that an alternate solution was needed.

The apartments owned by the clients had issues including:

  • Neighbours who were unhappy with the plans to merge the units.
  • Body corporate fees.
  • Unsuitable for the lifestyle changes (retirement) the clients were about to experience.

Through analysis of their property and lifestyle needs, Dion concluded that the best way forwards was not to merge the apartments, but rather sell them and use the money to buy a house instead.

The clients reported that this ended up being a great decision for them, and they thoroughly enjoyed the lifestyle benefits the move afforded them.

This story is a great example of the benefits offered by the design advice service, client needs and honest feedback come first, even if it means that no formal design service is required.


Same Destination, Different Journey

Another frequent occurrence in our design advice meetings is that we agree with the client’s overall vision, and simply need to alter their proposed execution.

In one example, a client had approached us wanting to build a new carport.


Dion Seminara doing a design advice service meeting

Architect Dion Seminara in a design advice service meeting.


Whilst Dion agreed that a new vehicle storage space was needed, he saw that there was an opportunity to simply adjust the existing garage, rather than needing to build an entire new structure.

This was ultimately a design suggestion that would save the client lots of money, and also simplified the project by using the bones of the home as the base of the design.

This is something we see frequently in design advice meetings – the client knows WHAT they want (for example, more vehicle storage) however what they are missing is the knowledge and experience to best know how to achieve the outcome they desire.

By getting the ideas, opinions, and feedback of a registered architect with over 30 years experience – you can rest assured that your design solution will perfectly suit the problems you are trying to solve!


Why it Pays to Get Expert Advice

As you can hopefully see by now, it really does pay to get professional input on the viability of your proposed project!

By investing a small amount of time and money into your initial design advice service – you can save yourself the stress, money, and heartache that an improperly designed project can cause!


Architect Dion Seminara on a job site

Architect Dion Seminara inspecting a job site.


Our design advice service is all about providing honest expert feedback to help you get the most out of your project!

As experts in lifestyle-focused residential architecture, we can ensure that you end up with a home which perfectly suits your current and future lifestyle requirements, and perfectly aligns with all your project goals.

Want to learn more about the benefits our design advice service can bring to your project?

You can read more about our design advice service here or get in touch today to learn more!

Dion Seminara Architect


We are experts at home design, renovations and new homes and ensure good value for money outcomes.

Hi, I am Dion Seminara, practicing architect and licensed general builder for 30 years as well as an environmental sustainable design (ESD) expert. I graduated from Queensland University of Technology (QUT) with honours, QLD in 1989. Registered as an architect in 1991 and registered as a builder in 1992, I am also a fellow member of the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA). Having received 12 ArCHdes Residential Architecture Awards, LJ Hooker Flood Free Home Design Award and the 2016 AIA Regional Commendation for Public Architecture, my expertise with both residential renovation (to all types of houses, especially Queenslanders, 50s/60s/80s), new contemporary homes and luxury residences has earned me a reputation as one of Brisbane's architectural specialists in lifestyle design architecture, interior design and landscape design.