How to Find an Architect to Design Your Home
Building your dream home from the ground up is an exciting (and sometimes stressful) period for any homeowner and knowing how to find an architect to design your home is an early and essential step you won’t want to approach lightly. You need to find a residential architect who will be up to the task at hand and who can guide you through the design and build processes. Not surprisingly, these processes can take a good amount of time and it’s important that you’re comfortable with the vision and guidance of the architect you choose. Otherwise, you may be asking for more challenges, more uncertainties, and more headaches than necessary.
What to Look for In A Residential Architect
It probably goes without saying, but your search for the perfect residential architect ought to be more than just picking out the cheapest option, the fastest option, or the friend of a friend option. You’re going to have to dig a little deeper than that. Fortunately, with a little hard work and research early on, you’re sure to find the right person for the job. Here are a few ways to help ensure that your pick is the right one.
Read Online Reviews
Before you even pick up the phone or fill out an online form, you’ll want to scour the Internet to find out exactly what people are saying about the particular architect or firm. Of course this means visiting their site and checking out reviews there, but be sure to go to Google, social media, and industry-specific review sites for a more honest and unfiltered perspective.
Ask for Referrals
When searching for the right residential architect, it never hurts to ask for a few prior clients who would be willing to sing the praises of their client/architect relationship. Any architect or firm worth your time and investment should have a laundry list of satisfied clients ready to share their experiences, insights, and advice.
Check Out Galleries of Other Projects
Go on a virtual tour of some of their past projects to get a visual idea of what they’re capable of (and it might just inspire some ideas of your own). As they’re dealing in a highly visual medium, most established architects will have interactive galleries built into their site that you can browse and many will include detailed case studies of what the projects entailed. This allows you to get a unique retelling of the process from those who brought the idea to life and might help you better understand what you’d be getting into in regards to your own project.
Trust us on this. There is no such thing as a stupid question when it comes to architecture. Working with a residential architect to design a home is obviously not something most people will do more than once in a lifetime. So it’s perfectly reasonable to approach your partnership from a novice level. Ask all the questions you want. Ask them multiple times if that’s what it takes to improve your understanding of the process. Your architect should be receptive to this and help you to get the answers you need (if they’re not, chalk it up to a major red flag).
Might as well get this out in the open early on just to make sure that both parties are on the same page. And until you have some initial discussions with your architect about the size and scope of your project, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to make any sort of educated guess relating to pricing. Architecture costs and fee structures can vary greatly depending on many variables both in and out of your control. So you’ll want to get some estimates from a few reputable businesses, compare what they offer, and decide what is best for you. And remember, as is the case with everything, you get what you pay for!
Picking a residential architect or residential architecture firm is a major commitment and the most important thing is that you find someone who is up to the challenge and who will keep you involved and informed every step of the way. At Mitchell Wall Architecture and Design, we go the extra mile for our clients to ensure that they get what they need out of their partnership with our firm. We’re proud of the processes we’ve adapted and refined over the past 45+ years and we love the reality that every project brings its own challenges and opportunities. So if you’re still wondering how to find an architect to design your home, we invite you to check out what we bring to the table. Contact us today.