Why Design is Important
Most manufactured products go through an intense design and development process that includes computer modeling, simulation, constructing prototypes, testing, refinement and redesign before they are brought to the market. The intent is to work out the bugs to insure that the product will function reliably over a period of time and will perform to some established level of specification in an aesthetically pleasing manner. While the front end development time can be extensive, the end results are predictable.
Custom home design on the other hand is a one-shot deal. A home is designed and built without opportunity (except at great cost) to go back and refine the results. A custom home is not only a technologically complex undertaking, it is also for the most part, assembled by a team of subcontractors that may have never worked together and is done so on-site in a non-factory controlled environment. The traditional homebuilding process leaves plenty of opportunities for things to not go right because there are so many variables to control under less than ideal conditions.
In the home design and construction process, the less definition of the design specifications and details, the greater the risk that something will not go as you had expected. Design and planning is important because it gives you the opportunity to control the end results instead of the contractors, vendors or the guy in the field. It also insures that the hundreds of thousands of dollars that you will be investing in your new home will be spent wisely.