1

Design Skill:
The typical route on becoming an architect takes 7 years; with a minimum of 2-3 years working practice experience, mentored by more senior architects. In that time we would have been critically analysed on our individual approach through numerous projects, scenarios and exposure in construction methodologies and materiality. What this means, by the time you engage a fully qualified architect they would have had nearly a decade of design experience to provide solutions to your brief – with a high quality design to make a substantial improvement in your everyday life. The design process would have under gone a series of exploration but not exhaustive; your needs, wants and aesthetic taste, site, context, statutory compliance in tailoring a building to keep you both warm and cool during the seasonal change.

2

Avoiding the pitfalls:
Whether you’re proposing a new building, looking to alter, refurbish/extend an already existing building is a tricky path which comes with financial risks. From the moment you decide to embark on this journey there will be a considerable amount of decisions to be made each with their own implications with many traps and pitfalls to be avoided. The question is, how are you going to avoid these pitfalls? The answer is through experience. An architect with their years of knowledge and years of experience are well placed and can assist in guiding you through the process.

3

Guidance through statutory approvals:
We all have our own personal vision on how we would like our home to be designed. However, there’s just the matter of obtaining statutory consent before that vision can manifest. Designing a building, from the moment the pen is put to paper is highly regulated by laws, and a design should statutory consider policies that are constantly changing. We guide you through the process of obtaining statutory approvals, whether it is full planning permission or an application that falls within the remits of your permitted development rights.

4

Value for money:
To get the most out of your project, the design process is extremely critical. Listening to the client’s needs is what an architect does best. Working closely with you, managing your expectations and identifying opportunities/pushing the boundaries that you may not be unaware of. We develop design solutions whilst highlighting their limitations to you so that you are able to make an informed decision. Some critics say that architects fees are too high. Or why should I pay for an architect when I can draw myself – the architect does more than draw. What you get from an architect, through their years of experience is professionalism, a thoroughly thought through design, assurance and peace of mind. Assurance in the fact that if the architect fails to provide a service according to their code of conduct then you are protected by our professional body, the Architects Registration Board. So ask yourself, how someone who is able to provide drawings be brought to justice and reprimanded in the event of them providing a poor service or acting unprofessionally? Invite us to give you a quote for your home project, you’ll probably find that our prices are competitive and if a little more than a non-registered person, we offer peace of mind, so cheaper may not always be the better option, it is a small investment for what is likely to be one of the your most expensive assets.

5

Project management and coordination:
Architects do not work alone or in isolation. All projects require a team of various professionals – each with a specific role. Depending on the location, site condition, building type, scale etc, it is likely you will require input from other consultants for your project; such as a structural engineer and party wall surveyor to name a few. Co-ordinating with your project consultants is a task in itself to ensure everyone is singing from the same hymn sheet. An architect will have the experience in working with numerous consultants. Going forward, this would provide a smooth working relationship amongst the team where the architect would coordinate and manage the rest of the project team on your behalf to ensure the project comes in on budget and on time. If the planners have an issue with the design or the builder needs confirmation on particular aspect, the architect is the one point of contact and will liaise with you throughout the course of the project.

And just in case that doesn't convince you.....

When we go to the dentist, we are rest assured that the dentist is trained to a sufficiently high standard to treat our dental pains, to follow through the treatment and refer us when required. We wouldn’t think of going to someone who wasn’t trained to look after our body. An Architect is to the home what a doctor is to the body, or a dentist is for your mouth.

We are trained for 7 years to understand buildings and the processes involved to make your home building project a reality and like a Doctor we are bound by a Code of Conduct and listed on a national register, so you can be rest assured that we follow a process and know what we are doing! And as a consumer you have the protection of working with a registered professional.

There are many architectural service providers in the market place, but those that aren’t on the register are unlikely to have the same level of training and don’t offer the same peace of mind. Don’t let a cheaper price tempt you on what is likely to be your most expensive asset – your home, an architect offers good honest value and is likely to pay dividends in the long run through the course of your project and will be involved through each stage as little or as much as you need.

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