Hiring an Architect

Hiring an Architect

Whether you are a business owner looking to design the perfect restaurant or a homeowner who has been inspired by Grand Designs architecture London project, the chances are you will require an architect.  For most of us, this is an area that we do not know a lot about.  We might have heard of the term architect or even visited famous architectural landmarks, but getting someone in to help us build or remodel our most valuable asset is a new concept.

What is Architecture?

The term architecture has several meanings, it can be both an art and a science.  However, the architecture an architect is concerned about is the design, including modelling, drawings and engineering.  It is the process of creating a building or structure from scratch using specialist knowledge and expertise.

Why Employ an Architect

When taking on a big design project, whether commercial or residential, an expert can take away some of the stress.  An architect will help navigate the planning process and look at building regulations as well.  We all have an idea of what we are looking for but advise on the bigger picture can be invaluable. The right architect can maximise the potential of a property and overcome any constraints.

Hiring an architect will also allow you to take a backward step.  We have all had experience of a tricky builder or work not being complete. An architect can manage the project from start to finish, including managing the builders and other tradesman.  The whole job becomes their responsibility and no longer your headache.

The planning process can also be left in the hand of the architect.  This usually begins with a feasibility study followed by the design, planning and building regulations submissions, and the architect can take care of it all.

Do you Always Need an Architect?

An Architect is an expert in their field that can offer a customer reassurance when they need it, however, not every project undertaken will require one.  A good rule to follow is if the project does not require any planning permission, then it is likely an architect may not be needed.  This is not a hard and fast rule and consulting an architect for smaller projects can sometimes be of benefit, but it is a good guide as a starting point.

Choosing an Architect

Like in every industry there are good architects and bad ones, so how do we know how to trust with the big project? Well, the obvious place to begin is to check their credentials.  Every reputable architect will be registered with their national body.  In the UK, architects should be registered to the ARB (Architects Registration Board) and RIBA (The Royal Institute of British Architects), although the latter is not compulsory.  Also, consult friends and relatives who have used architects, word of mouth is a great reference point.  You should also ask the architect for two references, and don’t be afraid to follow up with these people.

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