Eight Steps To Hire An Architect

How To Make Sure You Find the Right Architect

Hiring an Architect is an important step toward building a quality project, and also ensuring that the project runs smoothly. Here are the basic steps in meeting with Architects and assuring you hire the Architect you need.

  • Initial Discussion-Your initial discussions with an Architect will include a statement of your general needs (e.g., building a two bedroom home with a pool). The Architect will then let you know an approximate fee for the services that you will require.
  • Credentials-Is the Architect licensed with the State? Inquire as to the Architect’s background and work experience. What are their credentials? What types of projects have they designed? Are they posted on a website?
  • Visit Projects-A good Architect will take you to some of their past projects so you can get a sense of their style and discuss their general skills and philosophy. Ask the Architect if you will be dealing with them directly, and who will be designing the project.
  • Check References-Talk to former clients of the Architect and assess their satisfaction with the Architect’s performance. Did the Architect deliver what was contracted? How was the quality of their work? How was their communication and professionalism? Were the home plans (technical drawings) approved for a Building Permit on the first try?
  • Fees-How does the Architect establish the fees to be charged? What would the Architect expect as a fee for your type of project? Who will pay if the Architect makes a mistake. What will the cost be if the homeowner desires to make changes during construction?
  • What are the expectations from the homeowner? How much time will the Architect spend showing and explaining the project to the homeowner?
  • What types of representations of the project will be provided (e.g., drawings, models, Blueprints, computer animations).
  • Oversight-What will the Architect’s role be during construction—what level of supervision/observation will be provided.

Conclusion: After fulfilling all of these steps and getting the appropriate information you will be able to make an informed decision about the Architect you wish to hire, making sure he or she is the right Architect for you.