When should you hire an architect?
So you want to improve your home. It doesn’t work exactly how you wish it would. How do you begin and what are the things you need to know? We thought we could dedicate the next few posts to help folks out and talk you through the ins and outs of home renovation. This first post will address the question, “Should I hire an architect or can I do this myself?”
When you’re starting a new building project, and considering hiring an architect, you might fall into a cycle of asking yourself, “Should I? Shouldn’t I?” Second guessing is easy to do when you’re facing an undertaking that promises to consume a lot of time and money. But here’s the secret formula for putting those uncertainties to rest: When you combine large scope with high complexity, you need an architect.
If your main goal is to change some color schemes or finishes, you don’t need an architect – you might need an interior consultant, like a certified interior designer or an interior decorator (check out our post about these two professions and how they differ). As soon as you venture into the realm of adding more square feet or modifying structure, you’re talking about a project with scope and complexity that likely demands an architect to help you achieve your goals.
So, if you think you do need the help of an architect, when should you get in touch?
As a rule, it’s a good idea to make the call early in the process. It might even make sense during the stage when your “plans” are better classified as “dreams.” At Shelter, our Reality Check services are ideal for people who find themselves at a confusing crossroads and aren’t quite sure what route they should follow forward.
An architect does so much more than simply delivering you a set of blueprints. We develop a deep understanding of your needs and goals. We investigate, guide, analyze, suggest, give options, anticipate and ask the right questions to help clarify your goals and your own understanding of the heart of your project. This understanding sets the foundation of every decision to be made during the design process.
It’s not unheard-of to contact an architect when you’re further along in a project, but as we know from personal experience, waiting too long can end up costing you more in time, headaches and cash. We’ve seen too many projects started the wrong way, only to need a major rehaul once an architect is brought on.
Any true professional will appreciate the time and consideration it takes to get it right, and will appreciate the opportunity to build trust and a relationship with a client – even before contracts are signed or money changes hands. At Shelter, we’re in it for the long haul; we want to be your partner in making the places you live better and more beautiful.
Look for more info on remodeling and renovations soon. Have a great Labor Day everyone, your friends at Shelter.