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What should you consider when choosing an architect?

Choosing an architect is the most important decision you will make in the building process. It’s the first step towards turning your dream into reality. It’s important that your first step be the right one. That means hiring the right architect for the job.

Considerations when choosing the right architect for your project

  • Make sure your architect is a member of The American Institute of Architects (AIA). Members of this group adhere to a strict code of ethics.
  • The architect’s design talent on recent projects and his/her ability to think creatively and holistically.
  • The architect’s ability to understand budgets and to develop a working, realistic, project budget that will be kept in-check throughout a project.
  • The architect’s ability and temperament to coordinate a large team of specialty consultants on large and complex projects.
  • The range of an architect’s experience and how it may or may not relate to the clients project need.
  • The understanding the architect has of the client’s or user’s business, needs, goals and personnel.

Once you have a list of potential architects, call them and ask if they can take on your project and for a list of qualifications. The next step is to arrange interview with them. It is during the interview process that you’ll find out if you’re both on the same page.

Communication is key

I believe that a good architect knows not only how to listen, but also how to ask the right questions to determine the client’s needs. I consider ease of communication and ability to share ideas and concepts absolutely essential to good design.

As Senior Partner at MSGS Architects, I love to talk with clients about their building programs and needs. I particularly love the moment of creation when I can take a client’s program and turn it into a physical form – creating a form that looks at a client’s needs in a very different way.

Then I like taking those concepts and improving them, finding an even better organization or arrangement or construction concept. I am quick and efficient at space planning.

While searching for the ideal architect involves some work, it’s well worth it in the end when you can find the right team to bring your project to life.

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Tue, February 10 2009 » Inspiration

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