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DESIGN DILEMMA: HOW CAN WE AVOID SPENDING $15,000 TO $20,000 TO BUILD TEN STEPS?
On a picturesque 40-acre property densely filled with older trees, the client commissioned a spacious custom home design. John suggested a site placement for the home and recommended getting a topography layout from an engineer to insure proper placement due to small hills and valleys. Typically less than $1500, the topography fee would have been a small investment that later proved a good idea.
The client declined the typography layout since the county didn’t require it. The builder poured the foundation, but not per John’s recommendation. Two immediate problems ensued: there was no maneuvering room for cars to get into the garage, and it required ten steps up to the front door! Neither issue pleased the client. John was contacted to help, “How can we avoid spending $15,000 to $20,000 to build ten steps?”
The answer to minimizing costs and beautifying the property was to build retaining walls. John recommended a tiered landscape plan, as shown in the picture. This allowed better access to the garage from the street and only two steps into the house instead of ten.