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Re: Re[2]: Design fee guidelines

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>The consolation, though, that I get is the fact that the customer would end
up whining of the monstrous cost of material that he had spent.
>So, whenever I put up a bid, I make it a point that the owner gets to know
that for the minimal additional cost on my fee, he gets savings on the
construction cost without fear of compromising the structure's integrity.

I agree that there is no substitute for experience, but for certain types of
projects, I would have to take exception with that trade off. Some times the
engineer with the low fee does not practice the most current standards and
therefore their designs are actually less expensive to build. When you apply
current code seismic requirements to custom residential buildings, for
example, most likely you will receive the ubiquitous comment about being
over-engineered. It is not easy telling the client that not only will my fee
be higher than the competition, but the cost of construction will probably
be more. Having the experience to know where and when to specify more
expensive materials or certain construction assemblies is going to cost the
client more money in both fee and construction. I can analyze the bejabbers
out of something to prove that it is acceptable, but many times more
expensive is simply better (for example floor vibration performance.)


Jeff Smith