Since 1980, we have brought practical and cost-saving design concepts to the Bay Area.

We are committed to helping families and seniors use space more efficiently so they may stay in their homes.  Simply re-configuring existing space can bring functional harmony to where you live.

 

What We Offer:

Brockob Design Group offers complete design and renovation services:

  • Money-saving design concepts
  • Pre-purchase consultations
  • Project management from initial concept to final inspection
  • Complete engineered permit drawings
  • Swift permitting & neighborhood review (if required)

FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION
We are available to you anytime in person, by telephone or email for a general discussion of your project.  Please reach out to us:

Email: livearch@aol.com

Phone: 415-447-7992

PRE-PURCHASE CONSULTING
If you are contemplating buying an apartment or home, we can assist you with assessing its condition and estimating costs for the changes you wish to make.  A typical assessment can run from 3 - 10 hours depending on the complexity of the building and what you propose to do. In our experience this has proven to be vital to those needing a quick assessment. A few hours of time with us might save you much potential frustration.

DESIGN
Our strength as a small personal team is to assist you with developing innovative designs, while reflecting your budget and the unique qualities of the existing space. Once we have provided the designs needed to make your space work, you may choose to take over the project from there. We work with many clients in this way. The design phase may take a few hours to several weeks, depending on the complexity of your project.

PRELIMINARY COST ANALYSIS
With over 30 years of building experience, we can be clear with you early-on about the possible costs for construction. We feel it is important to be open and creative in exploring design possibilities, but also informative of costs. Before developing working drawings for builders, the anticipated costs of the project should be clear.

PLANS, DRAWINGS AND DETAILS
We work with you and the complexity of your project to produce solid, communicative documents for officials and builders. These include floor plans, elevations, perspectives, details and specifications. An efficient and workable design may require structural changes to the building and we provide all structural calculations and documents.

SELECTING AND NEGOTIATING WITH BUILDERS
We assist you in selecting and negotiating prices with builders. This is a fundamentally important element in the success of your project. We can save you time, money and future frustration by assisting you in finding the right people to do the work and making sure they fully understand the nature of your renovation.

PROJECT SUPERVISION
For the project to run smoothly it is essential that it be monitored often. A weekly visit and brief meeting with builders can prevent major mistakes from happening. We also let you know what has been completed for proper payment to be made.

GENERAL CONTRACTING
After 30 years of building experience, we know how to fully run a project from beginning to end. We also provide follow-up once you have moved in to be sure everything is functioning for you. Since we worked with you in creating the design and all the documents for construction, we can be of great value in building and general contracting your project. Depending on the complexity and budget for the project, our services for general contracting range from 7% to 10% of the cost of the completed project. This is well below what you would typically pay a general contractor. We can do this because we know intimately your design and expectations. We have also generated the building documents.

BILLING AND PAYMENTS
In general, we work with clients in 2 ways:
1) A fixed hourly rate billed bi-monthly, or
2) An agreed-upon fixed price, billed 1/3 at conception of agreement, 1/3 approximately halfway through construction and 1/3 upon completion.

Building in the San Francisco Bay Area can be difficult. Once you decide to embark on this journey, though it is rewarding, realize that it can be stressful and taxing. Finding competent, dependable and affordable workers is a challenge. Because of our service orientation to our clients, and commitment to communication and follow-through, we can maximize the quality of the work and minimize the severity of potential problems. If you choose to work with us, be assured that we will be with you every step of the way.

 

Background

All his life Bob has been explaining to people why his combined passions for psychology and architecture are not incompatible. Isn't architecture really about people and how we use space? Isn't it important to have listening skills and understand something about family dynamics when designing homes and apartments? So after teaching psychology on the university level for 10 years, including a year at St. Andrews University in Scotland, at the age of 35, he left the protected tenured life and re-entered the field of architecture.

Family photo Aurerbach 2.jpg

Bob, Diane & Max Brockob
Auerbach Schloss, Bensheim, Germany

Bob's strength in the design field is his ability to listen to client's wants and needs. With his extensive building experience, he is also able to understand what can physically be done with the space. His skill comes through harmonizing client's needs with the existing space through innovative and "think outside the box" design.

Bob has worked with excellence in a diversity of styles including French neoclassic, art deco, post modern, traditional Japanese and arts and crafts. He has designed everything from apartment and loft conversions, small home additions with low budgets to grand residences, to historic landmarks and restaurants. Much of his work has been published. (see JAPANESE HOME)

He traveled to Paris in 1998 to research classical French interiors for his restoration of the famous Jack's restaurant in San Francisco. (see JACKS RESTAURANT) He was back in France in 2002 traveling the countryside of Normandy in search of authentic details for a traditional Norman style residence he was designing in the wine country of northern California.

He moved to San Francisco in 1980 to design a compound of 3 Japanese styled residences. These were published in Authentic Home, the largest architectural journal in Japan. Bob continues his fascination with Japan through study and design of the Japanese tea house. On a crisp fall morning in 1992, he floated his tea house known as "True Emptiness" on the Chicago River through canyons of skyscrapers, as host and guests from Japan and U.S. shared a simple bowl of tea. It was a perfect morning as if a leaf had gently fallen upon the river and floated with the current. (see TEA HUT).

Bob has a Bachelors Degree from Colorado University combining architecture and psychology and a Masters Degree from The University of Chicago in social psychology.He has taught at Columbia College, Northeastern Illinois University, St. Andrews University and lectured at The Art Institute of Chicago.

What Does Diane Do?

 This photo is dated as evidenced by the non-cordless phone.

This photo is dated as evidenced by the non-cordless phone.

Diane brings her science and technical background to our practice with a Masters of Science degree from UNR, and 10 years of experience with design work.  Diane provides the working drawings and documents necessary for communicating to officials and builders.  She also can produce 3-D generated drawings that aid in the design process and help you visualize your project.

As a husband and wife team we are able to relate more fully to your needs. We understand the interpersonal dynamics so vital to good design. Because our clients always lead us into new design territory, we enjoy getting to know you and your unique projects.

Bob opening a roof for a skylight at one of his loft conversions

Testimonials


"Bob is a breath of fresh air in the design field. He listens and understands me and what I want. He then translates this into exquisite functional designs that realistically reflect the space. He is a pleasure to work with."

Carole D.


"I just wanted to say again, and I know I have said this before, but you are such a joy to work with. I cannot emphasize enough how human you allow the design process to be, much more than anyone I have ever worked with, even in my work which is in the arts. In the construction end of things you allow it to be human and to have change and undulations. You remain open to all possibilities and then make wise choices at just the right time to keep the project running smoothly. We love our home, it works beautifully for us thanks to your patience, insight, and talent."

Luana and Coni S.

 
"Just after we bought our apartment in the 11th arrondissmont we were having second thoughts about how we could make the small 40 square meter space work for us. We invited Bob over for a consultation. He quickly saw the issues facing us and came up with a plan on the spot for unifying our space and in so doing gave the kitchen and living area a more expansive feeling. We followed his guidance in our renovation and are very pleased with the results. The apartment truly works for us."

Dean and Donna S.

 
"My kitchen and dining area was a relic from the past. I needed light, storage and more open space. Bob created a very inventive plan and completely transformed the way I use my space. I love cooking and entertaining and with the work Bob has done my entire apartment works better."

Chuck M. 

 

"Bob is a blast to work with. From the first meeting I knew I had the right person to trust my apartment to."

Susan F.

 

"Bob came to our rescue when we were unable to continue working with our architect and builder. He immediately rolled up his sleeves and went to work disentangling the loose ends and solving problems. We are pleased with the final product. It truly works for us."

Brian and StephanieW.

 

"Bob listened to our complicated needs. He observed how we live and the patterns of our coming and going. He got to know our family and we trusted him to create a new floor plan and flow for our apartment. He also listened to what our apartment "wanted to be" in terms of its structure, its soul and its history. He knew what would be cost effective in terms of changing and adding walls. He advised us on materials, floor and wall coverings, appliances and plumbing fixtures. The changing needs of our family have been translated into a new, bright and flowing apartment. We came in on budget and on time."

Beverley and Mike H.


 

We have removed the last names of our testimonial clients for their privacy. At your request, we will gladly supply phone numbers and e-mails of our clients for reference.