Architect – Hire a Home Designer With Care
Doing your best to avoid missteps when contracting with an architectural professional is essential. This is someone who must carefully focus on the job at hand in order for the dream house in your mind to become a three-dimensional reality. Paying careful attention to the interview and hiring process is essential.
Shopping randomly for an architect on the internet can be hazardous to your project. A web search for an architect for your planned straw bale or pumice abode might connect you with an architect who knows more about optimizing his website for search terms than he actually knows about those building materials.
Being impressed by where the architect studied can be a mistake. Don’t confuse an ivy league university name with the caliber of the architect.
When you make initial contact with the architect, just be aware that while you are looking for a qualified professional, he or she may simply be looking for work. If you haven’t even described your project in detail, and the architect seems ready to accept the commission, beware.
The architect may say, “Your project sounds interesting.” While that might feel flattering to you, keep in mind that such a statement could also mean, “I need to make my bill payments, so I’m thinking I’d better take this job.”
Be sure to call the customer references supplied to you. While we assume that anyone provided as a reference will probably say only nice things, this is not necessarily true. Ask the reference who else you should be talking to about the architect. Then ask that next person the same question. While friends of the architect may not feel they can tell you derogatory information, they may well know who will tell you what you actually need to know.
Confirming current professional licenses is essential. Inquire whether there are complaints on record with the state architecture board. A complaint does not necessarily mean your prospective architect did something wrong, but it could indicate something you need to investigate further. Many states have all of this information online on their website.
Being asked to pay too much money in advance may be a red flag. Find out what is customary for your area, and for the size of your project.
Drafting the plans for your home is a critical task. Approach the task of hiring someone with caution. It is better to take the necessary time in the hiring process, than to have the project explode later.