Design Process.


Working with Planwise Design

01.Initial Consultation

The initial consultation will be a free brief discussion with our professional staff outlining the proposed project and the documents required to prepare a fee structure (quote) from Planwise Design. As every project is unique it is not possible to give a quote over the phone, there is no one price fits all. In special circumstances a site visit may be required prior to the preparation of a fee structure.

We have prepared a Fee Structure Guide to better assist and inform you on requesting a Fee Structure from Planwise Design. This will also help prepare your design brief. Available for download here.

02.Fee Structure (Quotation)

Preparation of a free fee proposal will begin once the requested information has been received as mentioned in the above downloadable Fee Structure Guide. At this stage property details will be checked against local councils planning requirements. A detailed fee structure will then be emailed to you including all aspects and stages of the design process.

03.Site Inspection     

Upon acceptance of the fee structure Planwise Design will conduct a site inspection. We assess each allotment individually, identifying all existing site features, knowing that every space is unique to its natural and built environment. We take into consideration the aspect of the potential structure, in terms of passive solar design, ecological design and topographical conditions. In doing this we obtain a feel and understanding for the allotment which enables us to better respond to its specific characteristics.       

04.Site Analysis

Whilst conducting a site inspection Planwise Design will also complete a feature survey. Alternatively you can engage a Registered Land Surveyor to conduct a feature survey or we can engage one for you at your request. The feature survey will form the basis of the Site Analysis.

05.Existing Conditions

Drawings are prepared with the information from the Site Analysis, including any existing structures & features on the allotment. This will give the basis to begin conceptual drawings.

06.Concept Design

Concept drawings will integrate the design brief provided by the client together with the physical attributes of the site. This is the most critical phase of the project as it will form the basis for the entire project. Close consultation is required at this stage so that the designer can best accommodate the intents of the client. Engaging an interior designer may be beneficial to develop material and colour schedules/selections. It is important to finalise any major design alterations at this stage as they can be problematic in future stages.

07.Town Planning

If your project requires a Town Planning Permit, Planwise Design will develop documentation to support the application to the local municipality. We will advise the client throughout the process. We generally act on behalf of the client in dealing with local council however you can engage a Registered Town Planner to act on your behalf or we can do this for you upon request. It may be required to engage certain sub consultants at this stage such as landscape architects and civil engineers to meet the requirements of the local municipality.

08.Construction Drawings and Documentation

Construction drawings can begin once concept drawings are finalised and town planning permit has been approved (if required). These are the plans and documentation that will be used to construct your building and apply for a building permit.  


Changes in the design from the original endorsed town planning drawings will require the plans to be to be lodged with council again to be re-endorsed which incurs a small application fee.

We work very closely with sub consultants at this stage. The scope of building works will determine the sub-consultancy required on which we will advise the client throughout the process.

A typical residential construction for example will require:

  • Geo-technical engineer, who will conduct a soil test on site, with a detailed report to follow.
  • A structural engineer can now design slab, footings and structural framing.
  • Accredited Energy Assessor will conduct a 6 star energy efficiency evaluation of the project.

Sub- consultants can be engaged on your behalf or alternatively you can engage other sub-consultants if you so wish.

At the completion of this stage you or your chosen builder can take the drawings and documentation to a building surveyor to apply for a building permit.