Our Process

We’ve refined an architectural process that blends creativity, precision, and client engagement, ensuring your vision comes to life.


Design Elite architectural innovation in Upstate South Carolina icon design and Planning - Our Process

Design Conceptualization and Planning

Personalized sessions to capture your vision and objectives.

Conceptual Design:
Drafting the initial vision into tangible designs.

Preliminary Phase

This is where we get to know your wants, your needs, your lot, and your budget. Each of those items can present both opportunities and challenges. We meet with each client to discuss design goals and share inspirational images. We will also visit the property to understand the views, slopes, and daylight. During this phase, we might present rough sketches that show preliminary placement on the property and general room layouts. This is usually the shortest phase, taking only a few weeks to complete.

Schematic Design:
Enhancing details and infusing structure into the concept.

Schematic Phase

Once we feel like we are heading in the right direction, we transform rough sketches and vague ideas into something more concrete. This may be presented as more refined hand drawings of floor plans and elevations or computer aided design. During this phase, rooms begin to have definite sizes, bathrooms and kitchens become more detailed, and the overall “look” of the exterior starts to come together. These creative phases are more difficult to provide a definite timeline, but we have found the schematic phase takes four to eight weeks on average. The completed schematic allows most builders to present an educated “ballpark” range of cost. If the schematic design falls outside of the target budget, we suggest adjustments and redesign as needed.


Design Elite architectural innovation in Upstate South Carolina icon Design Elite Execution and Completiond - Our Process


Design Development:
Fine-tuning the design for the perfect balance of beauty and functionality.

Design Development

Design development is the most important and time consuming phase of any project. We take the approved schematic design and input the floor plans, site plan, and exterior elevations into computer aided design. We create rough wall sections and cross sections to understand how the house comes together. We also play with scale, materials, and refining the space plan. 3D services are available during the design development stage. At the completion of design development, the builder has enough information to provide a more accurate estimate. We encourage a pause in the process to allow for that estimate.

Compiling comprehensive documents to pave the way for construction.

Construction Documents

We take the fully developed design and create construction documents for building the home. Sections, details, lighting layouts, door and window schedules, and notes and dimensions are all incorporated. 3D models provide more complete details. The drawing set is checked and finalized. The home is now ready for construction!


Design Elite architectural innovation in Upstate South Carolina icon Design Elite Execution and Completiond - Our Process

Execution and Completion

Contractor Selection:
Assisting in selecting a contractor who upholds our high standards.

Construction Oversight:
Ensuring the construction process aligns precisely with the design intent.

Delivering the keys to a space crafted to exceed your expectations.

Elements that Impact the Process and Timelines

Client Feedback

Our turnaround time is directly impacted by how quickly our clients can provide us with feedback. We ask clients to let us know If more than one week is needed to make a decision as this could impact our workflows.

Working Hours

Our hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Fridays. With advance notice, we are happy to accommodate meetings outside of those hours.


We strive to answer all emails and phone messages within one business day. We encourage any written correspondence to be done through email versus text message, as emails are easier to catalog and reference over the course of a project.

I have now done a basement project using Design Elite as well as a new house build and architectural plans. They have been fantastic to work with, and I have become a huge believer in using their team to confirm all details and drawings prior to getting bids from contractors. This has helped the contractor process tremendously so there is no confusion of expectations. Thank you all so much for your help and support.

– Kevin