Free vs Professional Design

Is anything in life really free or are there strings attached?  The “free lighting design” you get implies that you will buy a fixture package to that specification.  You might think that buying a package of anything gets you a discount.  In the lighting world, the opposite occurs.  If you add up the list price of all the fixtures you will find that the “lump sum” price for a package deal is considerably more.  This is why lighting sales people like to give you a “free design”.  Instead of a 10% – 20% profit, they may try to get a 50% mark up.

If someone else sells the very best lighting fixture for a given lighting requirement, will your lighting salesperson offer to specify the competition’s product?  Absolutely not.  You are stuck with their substitute!  Like it or not.  In most cases, you or your design team will never know that you are getting an inferior product and perhaps paying more money for it.

A contract with us as your lighting designer/ engineer brings you not only a full set of rendered images for you to decide how you want your building to look at night, we also provide you with the following services that no other consultant can:

  1. We are a façade lighting design specialist.  We are not only expert in lighting design; we have refined our expertise even further into façade lighting.  There are less than ten lighting designers in the world that can match our skills and knowledge.
  2. We have award winning artistic skills to give you the very best lighting designs.
  3. Our understanding of lighting engineering is unmatched.  We have knowledge of thousands of special light fixtures that create unusual effects.  No architect, electrical engineer or even other lighting designers have our specific knowledge.
  4. Our background as a structural building designer allows us to provide unique mounting solutions for fixtures.  Our aerospace manufacturing background allows us to design and build products never before imaged.
  5. Not having a lighting designer on your consulting team results in the “free lighting designs” by lighting salesmen.  They spend only a few hours on a project and provide a list of fixtures.  To create a lighting design it takes many hours of thought in which many aspects must be considered.   Mounting details must be created.  They are NEVER part of a “free design”.  A list of fixtures is not a lighting design.  It is merely equipment they want to sell you. Sometimes the lighting factories want to unload a fixture they have extras on.  Guess what?  You will be buying many of these fixtures as the salesperson gets a bonus commission for specifying them.  Your electrical engineers have no understanding if this fixture list is correct or not.  In addition, they have little artistic skills to know if the list is correct or to offer an alternative.
  6. Do you really want to spend tens of thousands of dollars for lighting equipment, with very little thought behind what should be used?
  7. We are independent of any particular brand, whereas your “free lighting design” is biased totally into the equipment sold by that sales person.  You will get only what they sell whether it is correct or not.
  8. Without a lighting designer on your team, there is no one to watch out for over pricing of fixtures or the electrical installation.  Our knowledge of new and retrofit lighting installations is far greater than anyone else.  We know what the prices should be for equipment.  Who do you want to trust to watch your money, someone you hire or someone who is selling you the product and who receives a higher commission if they can charge you more.
  9. We can usually engineer the equipment several ways to achieve a desired nighttime image.  That can be based on lower initial cost and higher maintenance cost or higher initial cost and lower maintenance costs.  The “free design” is not a design.  They aren’t working toward a designed image so they have no way to engineer the image to a different level.
  10. At the end of the job, if you must value engineer to lower the budget, we are the most qualified to cut fixture costs without sacrificing the design look.  Your “free design” will not come with good value engineering.
  11. Robert Daniels is past President of the Southeast Florida Section of the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES).
  12. Robert Daniels is Chairmen of the only technical committee in the world for lighting buildings, the IES “Building Façade, Bridge and Monument Lighting Committee”.
  13. Robert Daniels has been accepted as a member of the prestigious International Association of Lighting Designers (similar in concept to AIA, AMA & ABA)
  14. Robert Daniels has won two of the highest international awards given in the lighting world.  In addition, he has also won four national “Awards of Merit”.

You get what you pay for.  For great lighting, hire a lighting design professional, a person you can trust, a person qualified to work on your multi-million dollar building.

Don’t let the fox into the hen house with a lighting salesperson giving you a “free design”!

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