ABOUT HABITATIONS

WHO WE ARE

Originally emerging as “Designs for Living” in North Florida in the early 1980’s, our passion for residential design transitioned to Atlanta in 1996 preceding the Olympics. Along the Gold Coast of North Florida we produced custom designs for coastal and inland residences from Atlantic Beach to St. Augustine.

In Atlanta, our focus has broadened to address the vast number of older homes in mature communities that present wonderful untapped potential. We have become expert in working with the freedoms and restrictions inherent to modifying these fabulous homes from all eras of every size. It is our belief that within every older home is a new purpose waiting to be discovered. It is from this broad foundation, spanning over three decades, that we present with confidence our ability to serve your design needs skillfully.

WHAT WE DO

Habitations provides full spectrum residential design services with a specialty in renovation and retrofit design for existing homes. Although our passion is the re-purposing of older homes with a new design mission, we are equally comfortable with new home design forged from decades of experience. At our core is the firm belief that the Designer is the consumer’s guide and moreover, their advocate. The residential designer is where the project should, and does, begin. In this day and time, residential construction is a complex process with significant regulatory oversight. It requires practiced design skills coupled with detailed planning and documentation to properly achieve your envisioned outcome. We embrace the privilege of being your creative home design professional, and dedicated project guide through this exciting process.

Our achiEvements

We aren’t big believers in ‘likes’ or ‘client reviews’.  It’s too easy to select just those in our favor.  So, we thought, what better endorsement than that of our peers?  Let’s face it, we have nothing they want AND they know what we do better than anyone.  Beyond the fine professionals and organizations we associate with through the course of practicing our craft, please refer to the recognition of our peers, nationally, on the ‘Achievements’ tab.  These are not “Contest” trophies but moreover ‘Standards of Excellence’ presented for actual project presentations reviewed by the judges of the “American Residential Design Awards” (ARDA) on a nationwide basis.  ARDA operates under the umbrella of the American Institute of Building Design (AIBD); a national organization dedicated to excellence in the residential design industry.  We sincerely hope that these achievements provide you with a superior level of comfort when considering Habitations as your design professional.

THE HABITATIONS FAMILY

Habitations is a family owned business. Our business has a very down to earth style. We will work with you like friends as together we embark on a journey to creating your dream home. Meet the Habitations family.

Residential Design and Construction are my passions. Over the last century, this field has become an incredibly complex, costly, and highly regulated process.
Meet Robert
Ms. Baker joined the Habitations team in 2015 and uses her diverse knowledge to develop design solutions, assist clients with material selections, and communicate those solutions in graphic format.
Meet Aaron
Lacie’ Cowins, an experienced carpenter and contractor, graduated from the Art Institute of Atlanta with a BFA in Interior Design in 2014.
Meet Lacie
Kathryn has experience in a variety of work types, ranging from large-scale Master Planning to detailed hardscape and landscape work
Meet Kathryn
Walter is the newest member of the Habitation’s team. He joined the ranks in April of 2016 and has grown leaps and bounds since then.
Meet Walter
Nemo began his tenure with the company as a security guard at the age of 7. As the years passed, his ambition and loyalty never went unappreciated or unnoticed.
Meet Nemo

SERVICES

We work with state-of-the-art 2D & 3D CADD software to include the following: SoftPlan 2020 & Envisioneer Version 14, Forte v5.3, StruCalc 10.0 & BeamCheck v2016 among others

RESIDENTIAL DESIGN SERVICES

  • Complimentary on-site consultation
  • Custom Fixed Fee Proposal
  • Professional Evaluation of Relevant Existing Conditions
  • Detailed Graphic Documentation of Existing Conditions
  • Custom Design Concept Development
  • Detailed Client Reviews and Modification / Alteration Sessions
  • Permit Submission Drawings & graduated Bid Specification packages
  • Professional support acquisition & coordination (engineering, surveying, environmental, etc.)
  • Project bid release, acquisition and review
  • Builder evaluation and selection assistance
  • Pre-construction Meetings
  • Permitting Authority interaction
  • Limited Project Oversight as desired

ARCHITECTURAL SUPPORT SERVICES

  • Zoning variance submissions
  • Historic compliance submissions
  • Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) submissions
  • Community Association Compliance submissions & Presentations
  • Coordination for Environmental issue resolution
  • Energy Code Compliance (RES check) analysis
  • Structural engineering review affidavits (expedites permitting in some jurisdictions)
  • 3D concept rendering packages (interior & exterior). – Limited 3D is routinely used to aid the client in visualizing the proposed design. These packages are intended for investment clients to aid in advanced marketing and presentation.
  • Expanded Site Planning – Site planning is a component of most designs. This refers to larger parcels that may have multiple structures, future phases, or special considerations.
  • Professional Interior Designer support – We offer a graduate interior designer for personal assistance in specific planning issues, materials selections and acquisitions.
  • Graphic exhibits for trade show booths, presentations, site signage, real estate marketing, legal and courtroom exhibits, etc.

MAJOR DAMAGE RESTORATION

  • Interaction with Claims Adjusters
  • Coordination with Restoration Contractors
  • Interaction with Permitting Authorities as needed
  • Permitting Requirement & Tax Assessor Verifications
  • As-Built Baseline (Pre-damage) Drawings
  • Damage Assessment with Graphic Scope
  • Graphic Detail and Scope of Repairs
  • Assessment of Code Improvement requirements beyond Restoration scope.
  • Structural Engineering Acquisition and Review as Required
  • Single-Family, Multi-Family & Light Commercial Claims
  • Requests for 3rd Party documentation such as Surveys, Fire Reports, Etc.
  • Preparation of plans necessary for permit submission
  • Liaison with specialty suppliers (Replacement Trusses, Specialty windows, Etc.)
  • PDF files for archiving, reprographics and Permit Submissions

Robert W Platt

Senior Project Designer, Principal

Residential Design and Construction are my passions. Over the last century, this field has become an incredibly complex, costly, and highly regulated process. Truthfully, regulation is good. It has been born from the need to assure the health, safety, and welfare of the consumer in light of numerous advances in technology and methodology. My intention is to provide the consumer with attainable and objective guidance to navigate this process while keeping their best interest as the focus of all we do. 

Aaron M. Baker

Project & Interior Design

Aaron Michelle completed her BFA in Interior Design in 2009 from the Art Institute of Atlanta. Post-graduation, she explored several facets of the industry, including residential and commercial hard surface specification, plumbing fixture selection, and furnishing applications. As a hard surface specialist, Aaron Michelle educated architects and designers on the fundamentals of proper material selection for various design applications. Following this experience, it was her determination to move ahead with her career and pursue her Master’s Degree in Architecture. Acoustics had a heavy influence in her studies at Southern Polytechnic State University where she completed the program as the inaugural student.  In conjunction with pursuing her Graduate Degree she honed her commercial interior design skills at Coyle-Thompson-Jones. Aaron Michelle joined the Habitations team in 2015 and uses her diverse knowledge to develop design solutions, assist clients with material selections, and communicate those solutions in graphic format. 

Lacie' Cowins

Design Associate

Lacie’ Cowins, an experienced carpenter and contractor, graduated from the Art Institute of Atlanta with a BFA in Interior Design in 2014. A native of Atlanta, Lacie’ grew up admiring the historical architecture in the heart of the city and wondered if he could take what he interpreted as the structured, city-scape sensibilities and imbue it with a soft, lush home-life purpose. Those familiar with his work as a student could see the tangible renderings of his aesthetic in restored ruins, re-purposed as luxurious living quarters, or renovated shipping crates transformed into well-appointed, plush homes for its owners.

Lacie’ began his professional career as a military servant in first the Navy, then the Army and currently serves as reservist in the Army. His experience defending the homeland he loves has instilled in him a pride of ownership that he infuses in each project that he helms. His world travels with the military informs his design perspective and is the foundation for his love of international cultural design elements. As a design specialist, his expertise is evident in his knowledge of color theory, textiles and studio design.  

In 2018, Lacie’ Cowins became the most recent addition to the Habitations team and brings his love of design and repurposing hardscapes into lovely homes to usher in a new era of interior design. He provides his clients expertise in color and materials, 3D renderings and lighting design.

Kathryn Barnett

Landscape Architect

Kathryn Barnett studied at the University of Florida, where she received her Bachelor of Landscape Architecture in 1994. She practiced in Jacksonville for a short time before earning her Georgia Landscape Architect’s license in 1997.  She moved to Atlanta with her husband in 1996 and has been practicing here since then, aside from a couple of short hiatuses to raise her family.  They have been residents of Decatur since 1999.

Kathryn has experience in a variety of work types, ranging from large-scale Master Planning to detailed hardscape and landscape work, and her clients have included multi-family developers, colleges, commercial developers, municipalities and single-family homeowners.  She has also worked alongside some very talented Landscape Architects, Architects, Planners and Engineers.  In 2018, she started Terramore Studios, LLC and continues to focus on thoughtful, client-centered design.

Moose (Walter) Baker

Lead Intern

Moose (Walter) is the newest member of the Habitation’s team. He joined the ranks in April of 2016 and has grown leaps and bounds since then. He shows tremendous promise as an innovator and authority figure in the company. These qualities are evident in the adjoining photo as Walter ponders a difficult design and frankly, what to do next; considering he can’t read yet.  He currently holds the title of event coordinator and free-time dictator, but we expect to see great things out him as he grows within the company.

Nemo Platt

IN MEMORIAM

Ambassador Emeritus
Passing in Dec. of 2017, Nemo was Habitations’ oldest associate with over 91 (dog) years at his post. Nemo began his tenure with the company as a security guard at the age of 7 (49).  As the years passed, his ambition and loyalty never went unappreciated or unnoticed. Nemo held his position as Head of Security and ultimately rose to Director of Quality Control.  A position he held until the age of 98. Nemo rejected retirement and was always seen in the office reviewing plans and protecting the staff from a stream of threats to include Fedex drivers, Postal workers or UPS drivers. One of his favorite activities was clients reception and warming their feet during consultations. The office intensely feels his absence and misses the presence of floating dog hair, dog beds and the calming aroma of kibble.  There is truly a void in our midst that cannot be filled.