Interview of Architect Geert Verschuren, IHC Architects
Is it possible to realize your dream property with a fixed budget?
“First we make an estimate based on the square meters needed to build the desired house. This gives an indication which we need to check during the entire process, so no unforeseen costs will pop up to surprise you.”
Are we as future owners of the property allowed to ask for adjustments to the design?
“The stage in which the design is being created, is a very intensive collaboration between the future owners and the architect. Our goal is of course to create something that meets your expectations in every way. So in this stage it’s definitely possible to make adjustments. In a later stage as well, but we wouldn’t recommend it once the final design is been approved by you. Adjustments during construction usually mean extra costs, unless they are small adjustments that can easily be made.”
Which rules and regulations do we need take into consideration?
“On Curacao we have rules and regulations set by the government and we have rules and regulations set by the resort or allocation plan where you bought your lot that you need to take in consideration. These regulations can be very different per location. So please before you buy a lot, read the regulations very carefully. Usually when the resort or allocation plan gives approval for the design, the government will usually follow the decision made by the resort or allocation plan .”
How can we obtain a building permit?
“You can easily get a building permit if you meet all the requirements in the building code set by the government. There are several documents you need to hand over to the government. We will provide you with the necessary architectural plans. The structural engineer will take care of the structural drawings and calculations. Furthermore a form has to be filled out by the client, stating the name of the client, what kind of building will be built, the expected construction costs, name of the architectural firm etc. As an appendix the following has to be included: measuring bill of the lot, title deed, and a location plan known in the land register.
When applying for a building permit, the client has to keep in mind an advance has to be paid before the government will start judging the plans. Once the building permit has been approved a final payment has to be made, and a seal has to be submitted (the seals are available at the tax office). All payments have to be made in Dutch Antillean guilders.
Source: Curacao real estate