Top tips for working with an architect

Whether you’re renovating a property or planning an extension or conversion, drafting in specialist help will ensure that your project runs smoothly, the project is completed quickly, and standards are kept high in line with relevant laws and legislation. A great place to start is by talking to an experienced and qualified architect who has all the knowledge required to make your property venture a successful one, but choosing the right architect to work with you is a monumental decision to make. Take a look at our top tips on finding an architect here.


Architects have the skills and know-how to turn your dreams and visions into reality. They can assist you throughout the process, from designing and planning, to constructing and completing your renovation. However, if you have never worked with an architect before, it can be a daunting prospect, so we have put together some key advice that we hope will help.


Set your brief and budget

Before getting in touch with an architect to work with you, it helps to first create a clear wish list setting out what you want to achieve from your renovation project, and how you want to use the building in the future. This could include any storage ideas, energy efficiency requirements, eco-friendly features, small design details, and family needs. You should present this brief to the architect with a clear budget for your project, so that achievable and realistic goals can be set.


Meet with your architect

Once you’ve chosen your architect, you need to make them aware of the scope of your renovation project. The brief you have already put together is not a final draft. Once you meet your architect, they will spend time listening to your needs and asking important questions to extract all of the information they require. This will help your architect to see the project from your perspective, develop your brief, plan your works, and finalise the budget with you using a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Domestic Agreement or written contract. They will also propose ideas and make suggestions regarding how to improve your building and reduce your costs.


The design process

After receiving and discussing your brief, your architect will develop some initial design concepts for you to consider. It is at this point that you will see the architect’s visions and ideas about how they enhance your project. This is the time to be open minded as well challenge their ideas, until you reach a design you’re happy with. When it comes to choosing the final design, it should reflect your needs, dreams, and visions in line with your budget, planning permission, and building regulations.


The planning and construction period

Now that designs have been finalised and approved, you will be eager to make a start on renovating your property. Your architect will be able to provide technical drawings, specifications, and work schedules to help the project flow and flourish. You can be as involved as you wish at this stage, with the freedom to choose your own contractors or take advantage of your architect’s contacts within the industry. When works are taking place, your architect will monitor progress, inspect the site, deal with issues as they arise, and keep track of costs to ensure that your renovation project is running to schedule right to the very end. You can expect some changes to be made during the renovation, whether that’s due to you changing your mind about the position of a power socket, or an issue that crops up along the way. However, your architect will be able to assist and advise you throughout.


When it comes to property you want to ensure you don’t make any mistakes that could devalue your greatest asset. Hiring a professional such as an architect will help to prevent any pitfalls in your project plans. Take a look at our available auction properties, you never know, you may find something that could turn into your first or next project.