We Love Architects. Once upon a time I was an architectural grad, working in the field, bright eyed & bushy…. Anyway, keep reading to find out find out 5 Costly Things Architects Don’t Want You To Know:
They don’t control the Contractor. The contractor works for the homeowner. At the end of the day, if a cosmetic mistake is too costly to fix, more often the plans will be changed for permit filing before the mistake is fixed.
They don't really 'do' Interior Design. Unfortunately, due to the amount of minutia they deal with from Local Governments, running a business, coordinating the necessary engineers & servicing their clients - there’s literally no time left. In fact, the architect often finds themselves overworking on the price they gave, despite the markups they’ll hit you with later. They won’t pick your paints or your vanities. Sorry.
The Building Department takes FOREVER. While not impossible, the likelihood of getting a work permit 1 week after you file with the local Building Department is a task left to a chosen few. Of course everyone says they can - but if money’s on the line expect twice as long as you heard.
There will be more.... Payments. An architect gets paid upon deliverables - and the big deliverable is your work permit, with minimal work legally required once construction actually begins. This means your contract is probably loaded with extra’s including site visits, ‘interior design,’ renderings & any extra efforts to get the permit or make changes if you’re picky.
They don't show up during Construction. Because they don’t control the contractor. And Because they’ve met their deliverable. And Because they have to keep focused on getting new clients to sustain a viable business. Make sure your team is coordinated so no one is trying to interpret blueprints without the Architect’s input. Hiring a project manager, or at least having some kind of service agreed upon in writing will save you a lot of gray hairs and money.
Keep this in mind when you review the contract proposal you receive. Don’t blame them - it’s just years of misunderstood business advice in lieu of business classes required for an Architectural Degree. Your architect brings a lot of experience & value to the job, but they can’t often do it by themselves. You’’ll need a good team to build your dream home, you won’t regret it.
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