Frequently Asked Questions

Moore Construction Group has been a Design-Build company since 2015. Since our founding in 2008, we have recognized the importance of design in all of our projects. We believe that a thoughtful and collaborative effort between our architectural design and construction teams is essential to providing our clients with the best possible end result.

The main difference between a design-build company and a traditional general contractor is that a design-build company provides both design and construction services, while a general contractor typically only provides construction services. In a design-build project, the client contracts with a single company to provide both design and construction services. This company is responsible for all aspects of the project, from developing the initial design to completing the construction work. In a traditional general contractor project, the client contracts with two separate companies: one for design and one for construction. The design company is responsible for developing the plans and specifications for the project, while the general contractor is responsible for building the project according to the plans and specifications. Here is a table that summarizes the key differences between design-build companies and traditional general contractors:  

Characteristic Design-build company Traditional general contractor
Services provided Design and construction Construction only
Number of contracts Single contract Two contracts
Level of responsibility Responsible for all aspects of the project Responsible for building the project according to the plans and specifications
Level of collaboration High level of collaboration between the design and construction teams Medium to low level of collaboration between the design and construction teams

There are many benefits to using a design-build company, including:

  • Improved communication and collaboration: When the designer and builder are working under a single contract, it is easier for them to communicate and collaborate effectively. This can lead to a more streamlined and efficient project process, as well as a better end product.
  • Concurrent design and construction: Design-build firms can start construction on the project while the design is still being finalized. This can save weeks or even months of time.
  • Early contractor involvement: Design-build firms typically involve the construction team in the early stages of the project. This allows the them to provide input on the design and to identify any potential construction challenges early on.
  • Increased accountability: With the design-build model, the client has a single point of contact for the entire project. This can make it easier to hold the team accountable for meeting deadlines, budget, and quality standards.
  • Reduced risk: The design-build team is responsible for both the design and construction of the project, which can help to reduce risk for the client. For example, if there are any unforeseen challenges during the construction process, the team is responsible for finding solutions that work within the project’s budget and schedule.
  • Faster project completion: Design-build projects can often be completed faster than traditional projects because the design and construction phases can overlap. This can be a significant benefit for clients who need their projects completed quickly.
  • Reduced costs: Design-build projects can also save clients money because the design-build team can often find value engineering opportunities and negotiate better prices with subcontractors.
 

Overall, the design-build project delivery method can offer many benefits to clients, including improved communication and collaboration, increased accountability, reduced risk, faster project completion, and reduced costs.

Here are some additional benefits of design-build:

  • Single point of contact: With design-build, clients only have to deal with one company for the entire project, which can simplify the process and save time.
  • Early cost estimation: Design-build teams can provide clients with early cost estimates, which can help clients make informed decisions about their projects.
  • Innovative solutions: Design-build teams can often come up with innovative solutions to meet the client’s needs and budget.
  • Reduced change orders: Because the design-build team is involved in all aspects of the project, there are fewer change orders, which can save time and money.

Check out our blog post: 7 Reasons to renovate with a Design-Build firm

Not at all.  While MCG does offer standard finish selection packages (curated combinations of finish materials such as tile, cabinets, countertops, etc.), clients are not limited to these options. Our Architectural Design team is skilled in developing a wide range of looks and feels for the spaces they create.

Compared to home builders, our clients have the flexibility to create their own custom design and layout rather than the cookie-cutter builder options. We also welcome our clients to collaborate with their own Interior Designers to achieve their perfect aesthetic.

Homeowners who are looking for a collaborative, single-contract approach to renovating their home are a great fit for design-build.  This approach also reduces the stresses of project planning, coordinating amongst multiple parties and understanding the division of responsibilities.  Design-build, especially with MCG, empowers homeowners to be navigated through the design and construction process while focusing on what matters most- creating their ideal home.

Homeowners who are DIY-minded, and who have the time, resources, and inclination to manage a multiple-party project are generally not a good fit for design-build.  The design-build approach is all about streamlining the renovation process.  Homeowners who wish to pave their own way in developing a plan for their project, and then closely manage the parties involved are likely better suited to other methodologies.

Choosing the right team for your renovation project is a critical decision that can have a significant impact on your home and finances. At Moore Construction Group, we understand that this process can be daunting. That’s why we’ve created a comprehensive guide to help you make an informed choice.

Request yours now

Construction projects, especially in your home, can disrupt your daily life.  While our team is experienced in helping you navigate the process ahead and mitigate your discomfort, your home won’t be the same while we work on its transformation.

Depending on the overall scope of your addition project, you may need to vacate your home during certain construction phases.  Our team will help you define your project timeline, including identifying portions where:

  • Our insurance does not permit you to stay in your home due to health and safety concerns
  • You are permitted to return to your home by our policies, but it will likely be quite uncomfortable
  • Your home will be reasonably comfortable and undisrupted


During phases where vacating isn’t required, you may still choose to find other accommodations dependent on your threshold of comfort.  If you decide to stay in your home, you will likely experience:

  • Disruption to daily routine: Building an addition can be disruptive to your daily routine, as you will have to deal with construction noise, dust, and mess.
  • Reduced privacy: During construction, you will have less privacy as workers come and go from your property.
  • Safety hazards: Construction can be dangerous, so it is essential to follow your Project Manager’s safety instructions and stay clear of areas that can be dangerous.


Building an addition is a process, and we will work with you to develop a plan that will maximize your comfort while your home is expanded.

The process of renovating or adding onto a historic home can be complex and challenging, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. Here is a general overview of the steps involved:

  1. Determine what type of renovation you are interested in pursuing for your historic home
  2. Contact MCG to determine if your home is located in a regulated historic district, which requires special permissions for any exterior modifications. A zoning analysis may also be required.
  3. Schedule an in-home consultation and receive a complimentary Preliminary Project Report from our team.
  4. Engage us for Schematic Design to further define your renovation project
  5. Decide on a layout/floorplan
  6. If required, MCG will prepare and submit an application for your project with the relevant jurisdictional department(s)
  7. Seek design approval by your jurisdiction by either an administrative approval or a public hearing. MCG can represent you for these hearings as well.
    1. Old Town Alexandria: BAR (Board of Architectural Review)
    2. DC: HPRB (Historic Preservation Review Board)
  8. Design development phase
  9. Submission for permits
  10. Construction

Other tips for renovating or adding onto a historic home:

  • Be respectful of the home’s history and character. When making changes to your home, try to preserve its original features and character whenever possible.
  • Use high-quality materials and construction methods. Historic homes often require specialized materials and construction methods. Be sure to hire a contractor who is experienced in working with historic homes.
  • Be patient and flexible. Renovating or adding onto a historic home can be a complex and time-consuming process. Be patient and flexible throughout the process and be prepared for unexpected challenges.

Renovating or adding onto a historic home can be a rewarding experience, but it is important to be prepared for the challenges involved. By following the tips above, and working together with our team of experts, you can create a home with a perfect balance of history and modern convenience.

Our specialty is large-scale renovations and additions.  This includes historic renovations, basement dig-outs, underpinning and more. 

We currently have a $50k project minimum for most Northern VA projects, and $100k minimum for DC.  

We can, however, include smaller projects for clients who we are currently working with.

Our team strives to communicate effectively and efficiently with our clients before, during, and after each project. 

  • Our office staff is available to answer your calls during business hours at (703) 960-0253
  • You may email your project and/or design team at any time
  • Once you have made your way through our process to Schematic Design, you can access your client portal.
    • Your client portal allows you to:
      • View project progress photos
      • Check your project schedule
      • Message your construction and design team members
      • Comment on photos, change orders, invoices, and more
      • View and pay your invoices online
      • View, change, and approve your selection materials
      • Submit warranty requests

In the event of an emergency, you may contact your Project Manager outside of regular business hours or send an urgent message through your client portal.

Moore Construction Group utilizes a combination of staff technicians and subcontractors to complete our projects. Regardless of the mix of resources used, each project is built to our high standards and overseen by one of our talented and experienced Project Managers.

All of our trade partners are properly licensed and insured (both liability and workman’s compensation coverage), and we hold all the current certificates of insurance for each subcontractor working in your home.

MCG is a licensed Class A Builder in Virginia, General Contractor in DC, and holds plumbing, electrical, and gasfitting trade licenses. 

Moore Construction Group is a Lead-Safe EPA Certified Firm. On April 22, 2008, EPA issued a rule requiring the use of lead-safe practices and other actions aimed at preventing lead poisoning. Under the rule, beginning April 22, 2010, contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 must be certified and must follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination.

EPA requires that firms performing renovation, repair, and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in pre-1978 homes, child care facilities and schools be certified by EPA and that they use certified renovators who are trained by EPA-approved training providers to follow lead-safe work practices.

D.C. requires additional licensing which we hold as well.

Yes, by law in Virginia, all labor and materials we provide  are guaranteed for one year from completion of Final Inspection by your jurisdiction. This excludes any materials re-used or provided by clients.

Additional warranties may be offered for various services and materials as well.  Documentation for these warranties will be uploaded to your client portal.

Throughout our process, we offer clients reasonable budget expectations based on the amount of information we have at each phase. Generally, budgets are offered:


Once your Design Development phase is completed and your permits have been issued, you will receive a contract document at a fixed price for the scope of work defined in your design phase.

We utilize the American Association of Cost Engineering (AACE) chart to illustrate the confidence of each estimate we give.

Design and Permitting Summary

Supplementary Design Development (Supplemental drawings/diagrams, Finish Selections, and Permitting) will likely fall in the $16k range and take 1-3 months. This budget will depend significantly upon design selections, material selections, and finalized installation details.

 

Construction Summary

Based on the above scope and considering Classic Package finishes, we expect a reasonable budget to start in the $550k range and the project to take between 6 and 8 weeks.

We are scheduling new projects like yours about two months after Construction Contracts are signed.

Based on the level of information provided, we consider this to be a Class 3 Estimate, as indicated in the chart below.

Notes:         [a]

Cost estimate classification matrix as presented by AACE International (Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering)

                          [b]

The state of process technology and availability of applicable reference cost data affect the range markedly. The +/- value represents typical percentage variation of actual costs from the cost estimate after application of  contingency (typically at a 50% level of confidence) for given scope.

It’s important to keep in mind that the budget provided is only an estimate. Our team has done their best to prepare this budget based on the information available, and it reflects our current understanding of the cost to construct your project in today’s market.

While we generally decline to engage in the bidding process set forth by outside Architects and Architectural firms, we do offer a path forward with a Supplementary Design Development for prospective clients under these circumstances:

 

  • We provide a base project estimate, to help you become calibrated on the overall cost from our preliminary review.  There are still many unknown details and unselected materials at this point in the process.  However, our estimated cost calculation is a fair starting point for an overall budget.
  • We can then meet at the property or office to further discuss the project, asking and answering questions.
  • If you choose to proceed in working with us, we offer you a supplementary design development proposal that includes the following:
  • Creation of your online BuilderTrend Client Portal
  • Consultation and summaries for project phasing and value engineering
  • Preparation of your finish selection schedules
  • Finish material selections
  • Detailed elevation drawings for any custom tile, trim, and finish carpentry work
  • Any additional design work required to construct the project or requested by the client.
  • Permit submission and expediting through building permit issuance (optional/as required)
  • Preparation and presentation of variance or historic hearings (optional/as required)

*All of the above items are your property and can be used to secure other detailed bids

**If MCG obtains your building permit, it can be transferred to another company upon request.  Some jurisdictions charge a nominal fee to make this transfer.

***MCG cannot make edits to plans developed by a licensed Architect.

  • Once your permit is issued and your supplementary design development is complete, MCG will offer an executable contract for your project.

For products purchased on our website, we accept Visa, American Express, Discover  and MasterCard. These are the only services which can be paid for via credit card.  

Design Development and Construction Contracts are billed through our online portal where they can be paid directly via ACH.  We also accept checks for all of our services.  If you have questions, please contact us online, or via phone at (703) 960-0253.

If you’re looking to secure financing for your project and would like some guidance, we’re here to help. For over 15 years we have aided our clients in securing financing, worked with banks and other financial institutions on construction loans, and offered a class in Renovation Financing. Please feel free to reach out to us and schedule a call so we can discuss your project further and explore the best financing options for your needs.

Great!  You can get the process started by completing our online form. If you would like to chat over the phone you can reach us at (703) 960-0253.