5 considerations when selecting an architect
Most people think building a new home can be one of the most exciting things in your life. And while it’s certainly possible, you also need to be aware of the process to do things the right way.
In fact, erring when making some key decisions may lead to devastating results. One such make or break decision that can greatly affect the outcome of your project is choosing an architect.
However, we know that without the required experience or knowledge, it can be a fairly daunting decision to make. Fear not, though, as we have come up with the 5 most important factors you need to consider while choosing an architect for your project.
While starting your search for some good architects to choose from, your most important resource will likely be the people who have used one recently. Architects, just like most other professionals, get most of their business through word of mouth, so it’s a pretty common way of searching for them.
Besides asking your friends and family for referrals, you can even simply ask the owner of a home that has caught your eye to share the contact details of their architect, as well as the experience they had with them.
Ask Professionals in Related Fields
Another great way to find some great architects is asking people in related trades for references. They include general contractors, interior designers, as well as other professionals in related fields.
If a contractor has a good recommendation, it may very turn out to be your best bet, as the overall success of the project heavily depends on how well the contractor and architect work together.
Once you have a list of at least five (perhaps three for small projects) candidates, you can start doing some research on them in order to find the best one for your project. While this may sound like something complicated, it may actually turn out to be fairly easy and straightforward.
This is because nowadays most reputed architects have their own websites, where they also share their portfolio, which usually consists of pretty much every type of project they have worked on in the past so that potential clients can get an idea of how experienced they are.
You can even take your contractor’s help, or any other professional in a related trade who is experienced enough to have a say on the matter, to do some analysis on whether the architect will be an ideal fit for the project based on their portfolio.
Once you’ve narrowed down the list to a few, or just one name who seems a perfect fit for the job, you can go ahead and make an appointment to meet and interview them. Usually, you wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) be charged for it.
If you’re not sure what exactly you should be asking the architect you’re looking to hire while interviewing them, here’s a good list of questions to help you get started.
- Can I take a look at some of your recent samples?
- Have you worked on projects like these before? If yes, what do you think are the biggest obstacles while working on them?
- How do you plan to go about working on this project?
- How much would you charge for it?
- How long is it going to take (a rough estimate)?
- Do you know of any good contractors you would like working with (if you don’t already have a contractor in mind)?
- Is there any other important thing that you would like to tell?