The 5 steps of working with an architect


When people hear about architects, images of people in tight, black turtlenecks and thick-rimmed glasses may come to mind. What most people don’t think about is what it might be like to work with an architect.

More people work with an architect than you might think, and it’s not always just to build a new, completely unique home either. Often, an architect can play a huge role in planning a remodel or kitchen redesign. Plus, not all of them wear turtlenecks! 

Here’s a five-step breakdown of what working with an architect looks like.

  1. The first meeting. This is one part job interview, one part first date. It's the time when you sit down with the architect you might be working with and go over your ideas, discuss their portfolio and see if they are a good fit to make your vision a reality. There’s no magical formula to use to see if you two will work together well, and that’s a big reason why it’s so important to have this face-to-face meeting.
  1. The design stage. The architect will come to your home or the building site and assess the state of things. From there, you may look at photos or other images for inspiration and to give the architect more precise aesthetic direction. Based on discussions you have previously had, they will draft designs and eventually come up with the plan that works for you.
  1. Documentation. The architect now takes the agreed-upon design and comes up with a more detailed design plan. This can include a computer-generated model and a set of drawings that include virtually every detail needed to secure the proper construction permits.
  1. Acquiring permits. In this phase, the architect submits plans to the local authorities who will approve the construction. This may take two weeks, or it may take four months.
  1. Construction. Once the plan has been approved and you have the necessary permits, the fun part begins. This is when your dreams start to take shape. But first you have to find the right contractor. Many times the architect you work with will have preferred partners; other times you may have to interview several builders and weigh their bids against one another.

No matter what path you want to take with your current home or future home, talk to a Coldwell Banker Hedges Realtor® today. With years of experience, they know just about everything there is to know about houses and the housing market.

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