FAQs


  • How much will this home or garage plan cost to build?
  • What is included in a "set"?
  • Do your plans meet the most up to date codes?
  • Can these plans be modified for our specific needs?
  • Do our plans come with architect/engineer seals on the plans?
  • Which package should I order?
  • Can I order a materials list without ordering the plan?
  • When will my plans be shipped?
  • Can orders ship to PO Boxes?
  • What will the shipping cost on my order be?
  • I changed my mind. Can I return my plans?
  • I'm still confused. Can I get more information?


    How much will this home or garage plan cost to build?
    In one form or another, this question is one of the most frequent requests we receive from our visitors. Unfortunately, it is also one of the hardest questions to answer accurately.  Labor and material costs can vary substantially based upon the time of the year, complexity or uniqueness of the project, good or bad economic times, jobsite conditions, regional markets, the unemployment rate, local building codes and zoning laws, availability of supplies and workers and several hundred other factors.

    Adding to the confusion, there really isn't a uniform method of measuring square footage. Is your builder or realtor using exterior dimensions or interior dimensions? Have they included the garage or basement in their calculations? What about decks or covered porches? All of these play a major role in the final pricing.

    We do provide an estimated cost range for each plan.  This number is calculated by multiplying the total square footage (including any bonus room) times the average cost to build per square foot acoording to the most recent US Census Bureau data.  This is only a rough estimate for you touse as a starting point. 

    We recommend that customers speak with a local lumber yard and/or local builders who have a better idea about the local market.  If you bring a copy of your plans to your local builder or lumberyard, they should be able to provide a far more accurate estimate.



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    What is included in a "set"?
    Most Home and Garage Plans include:
    • Foundation Plan - a full basement, walk-out, crawl-space, or a slab foundation. This varies depending upon the design.
    • Floor Plan(s) - each level of the design in detail. Dimensions for rooms, doors, windows, stairways and structural info are some of the details shown.
    • Cross Section and Details - elements of the actual construction.
    • Electrical Floor Plan - a standard layout for outlets and lighting fixtures.  (Note - Some designers do not include electrical plans as electrical contractors frequently create their own.)
    • Exterior Elevation(s) - the way each side of the house will look like when it is built.
    Please note our plans generally DO NOT include separate detailed framing plans.  If you require framing plans, please contact us for availability and pricing.


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    Do your plans meet the most up to date codes?
    At the time they are drawn, they are drawn to the national codes that would apply. Our plans comply with at least one of the three most common codes - CABO, UBC or IRC. It is virtually impossible to design for and meet all codes, therefore some plans may need small revisions to pass your local codes, but this can be done by you or your builder, based on your building department's recommendations.


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    Can these plans be modified for our specific needs?
    In general, yes they can. Some designers prefer to do modifications to their own plans while others allow you to hire an outside professional.  You will need to call us to check on this. Design Connection LLC can do revisions to plans as well. In most cases it is most effective to have the plans revised locally, because a local design firm would be more familiar with local building codes.


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    Do our plans come with architect/engineer seals on the plans?
    No, unfortunately our plans do not come with seals on them. The designers we represent are scattered across North America.  While they may provide seals for the state or province they reside in specifically, it would be impossible for each designer to be certified in every state and county. 

    If you are required to have a seal on your plans, we recommend purchasing a vellum, PDF, or cad file of the plans and have them reviewed and sealed by a local architect/engineer in your state. They will charge you for this service, but by purchasing a stock plan you will still save over the cost of custom drawn plans.

    CA, OR, SC, WA and NV residents please note that our plans do not meet seismic/wind code requirements. Additional engineering will be required.

    GA, SC, FL and NC coastal residents please note that your plans may require additional engineering to meet hurricane/wind codes.

    AL, AZ, CO, CT, DE, FL, ID, LA, KY, MD, MA, MN, NV, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, UT and VA residents please note that your plans may need to be engineered to meet local building codes. Please check with the building department in your local municipality for details.

    If you are planning on having local engineering work  done on the plan you purchase, you MUST purchase the reproducible vellum, PDF plan, or a CAD file.  An engineer performing services on a blueprint is directly in violation of international copyright law.


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    Which package should I order?
    The package you choose will vary depending on you and who is constructing this project for you. In addition to a set for yourself, you will need to give several copies to your general contractor, who in turn distributes copies to his subcontractors, mortgage lender, and local building department.  We highly recommend going with the 8 set package if you are bidding out your project, as most contractors don't return the blueprints after quoting.

    Many of our customers purchase the standard package of 5 or 8 sets. These two packages are good if you are going to build the home as is, with little or no modification.

    If you are planning on having changes made or need an engineering seal, you will want to purchase the Reproducible Media or the CAD file (if available). Reproducible media is a single set of either erasable vellum or Mylar that is used when you want to make changes to a plan, as well as allowing you to make the necessary copies to construct your project.

    The CAD file is an electronic computer aided design of the design. It is assumed upon ordering either of these, that you will be using a design professional for the modifications. As for the CAD file, you will need CAD format software that supports DWG, or DXF formats, as this is the most widely used formats that our designs are created in.

    When purchasing the Reproducible Media or CAD file, you will receive a Release of Copyright letter allowing you to make copies of the original or changed home plans, which are then used to construct the home.



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    Can I order a materials list without ordering the plan?
    Maybe, please call us to see if this option is available for the plan you are interested in. 



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    When will my plans be shipped?
    Generally plans are shipped within 24 hours Monday thru Friday. Whenever possible, plans are shipped the same day.  However because plans are shipped from the original designer, we cannot guarantee this.  Unfortunately plans do not ship on weekends. If you have requested optional services such as alternate foundations, mirror reverse (or right reading reverse) or other revisions, the order may take longer.  We will advise you of any delays longer than 2 business days.


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    Can orders ship to PO Boxes?
    Sorry, but no.  We frequently use delivery services such as UPS and Fedex.  These courier companies will not deliver to PO boxes.



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    What will the shipping cost on my order be?
    Shipping costs apply for each individual plan number you order as each plan may come from a different shipping location.  Since plans ship directly from the designer, some shipping prices vary based on the designer's home base.  For the most part, the following shipping costs apply:

    PDF or CAD file orders - Free
    (Continental U.S.) Ground (7-10 days) - $30
    (Continental U.S.) Express (2 days) - $45
    (Continental U.S.) Express (Overnight) - $60
    Alaska/Hawaii Ground (7-10 days) - $50
    Alaska/Hawaii Express (2-3 days) - $90
    Alaska/Hawaii Overnight (1-2 days) - $125
    Canada (3-4 days) - $99
    Canada (7-10 days) - $65
    International (overseas 7-10 days) - $125
    All prices are in US dollars
    Pricing for some select plans may vary.



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    I changed my mind. Can I return my plans?
    Unfortunately, no.  Architectural plans, like software, are copyrighted and once you have opened the package, we cannot accept any returns.



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    I'm still confused. Can I get more information?
    Absolutely! Please click here to view a list of contact options. 



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Design Connection, LLC
5055 Live Oak Circle
Bradenton, Fl 34207
Phone: 860-485-4188  

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