At HOMETEC, we focus on homeowners and residential design. In designing a home or addition, we provide a number of solutions to the problems and criteria defined by the homeowner.
Homeowners find it easier to review and critique several possible solutions rather than create a solution from scratch themselves. Therefore, our job is to show our clients a variety of ways to accomplish what they want to do to their home.
Please explore our site. And when you’re ready, we’d like the opportunity to work with you!
-Richard A. Hartman, AIA, Principal
Richard A. Hartman, AIA, Principal
- Owner HOMETEC ARCHITECTURE, San Jose, since August 1987
- Design and production drawings
- Residential Projects and Development
- 80 to 100 residential projects per year
- Worked for various California Architectural firms, 1978-1987
- Licensed Architect, California – #C-018952 (Design, structural engineering, construction)
- Licensed Contractor, California – #706111 (Construction)
- Green Building Professional (Build It Green)
- Cal EMA S.A.P. Trainer (Post-Disaster Building Inspector)
- Bachelor of Architecture 1984
- California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, CA
- Associate in Science, Architecture, 1980
- West Valley College, Saratoga, CA
- Diploma, 1974
- Willow Glen High School, San Jose, CA
- The American Institute of Architects, AIA
- National Federation of Independent Business NFIB
- National Trust for Historic Preservation
- National Maritime Museum Association
- San Jose Preservation Action Council
It was always Rick’s dream to have his office in a historic house, and in 2003 we purchased a home built in 1906 designed by the prominent San Jose firm Wolf and McKenzie. It was fairly trashed after having the same tenants for 20 years who took in boarders and an absentee landlord who did not bother with upkeep.
Trees growing too close to the house had damaged the roof resulting in leaks both upstairs and down – ceilings caved in and buckling wood floors. The City of San Jose was happy to see an Architect purchase it because it was in such bad shape that another buyer might have demolished it.
Most of the fixtures had been stripped out way before our time and the kitchen had been remodeled in a horrible rustic 1970’s fashion with fake brick on the walls and a strange diamond pattern of wallpaper and wood siding in the dining room.
Once we removed the abundance of overgrowth, a new roof was put on and the buckled wood floors dried out and didn’t need anything but a bit of sanding and polyurethane to be brought back to their original gorgeous condition.
The old redwood gutters caused 80 percent of the roof overhang to be rotted. A new metal gutter was made to the dimensions of the old, the curved rafter tails were replaced, the roof structure reinforced and new roofing installed.
Restoring a historic house is a labor of love and full of surprises. In one room, we spent a week stripping wallpaper and paint only to have the plaster fall off and we had to put drywall up anyway. We discovered the tracks for the sliding pocket doors were still in place, although the doors themselves were long gone. A good friend created the mounts for the new doors and they slide beautifully on the old rollers and tracks.
The living room, and some of its beautiful wood trim, was covered over with grass wallpaper – which, if you didn’t know, is really a pain to remove! The door and window trim and the baseboards were stripped and refinished in place. In the old dining room, all the trim had been lost, but was easy to replace, because of its simple design.
The building is in a commercial zone so we were able to convert the house to a live/work unit with our business downstairs and living quarters on the 2nd floor. It took us a year to restore it and it continues to be a labor of love as there is always something to be done.
A Little about HOMETEC
I started HOMETEC in August, 1987, concentrating on a market niche long abandoned by traditional architects that of Homeowner projects, additions, remodels and new homes. This choice has enabled me to have a successful practice for more than 25 years.
There are four main reasons for this success. One is that I embraced the Computer Aided Drafting concept about 15 years ago and, using Chief Architect, am able to provide my client with the ability to ‘walk-through’ the home in 3-D during its design.
The second reason is that I do not charge typical architectural fees of 10-15 percent of construction costs. My fees rarely exceed 5 percent and generally range from 3-4 percent of construction costs. I also do not normally charge Time and Materials for a project. This allows my clients to feel comfortable that I am focused on their project and not on billable hours.
The third reason is that in the last ten years. HOMETEC has averaged over 60 projects per year. This means we are very familiar with the rules and regulations for the cities in Santa Clara County. Planners, Building Department Technicians and Inspectors have come to recognize HOMETEC and appreciate the quality of our work.
And the fourth reason is related to our Design Philosophy, as described on the How We Work page – a philosophy that puts the Homeowner first in the design process.