Depending on the community your project belongs to and the complexity of the work covered by the plans, various specialty work may be required. For example, if you are adding new space, both the services of a Structural Engineer and a Soils Engineer may be needed. If your project is for your business, you may need the services of a Mechanical Engineer or Electrical Engineer. Most projects will require an energy study typically conducted by companies that specialize in this.
Most of these specialty services are costly. It is possible that the specialty work your project requires may cost more than the design. Be sure to ask whoever has proposed to develop your plans about which specialists (if any) are required and whether the costs for their services have been included. If their costs are excluded, at a minimum, you will want recommendations as to who the proposed plan developer normally uses. Better would be for the plan developer to include in their proposal at least an estimate (a range is preferable) as to how much each specialist is likely to charge. If the plan developer is going to hire the specialists on your behalf (we do this) then so long as the expected costs for these specialists is included in their proposal you should have the necessary cost protection to know (either exactly or at least a range) of your total plan development costs. However, if you are going to end up hiring these specialists yourself (based on the plan developer’s recommendations) then you will need to contact each specialist before you authorize any plan work to validate their costs.
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