Everyone aspires to build a dream home, but the design and construction of a house is a considerable investment. Therefore, one cannot afford to adopt a trial and error method as each flaw in construction will mean an additional expense towards rectifying the error. That's why one should hire architects to help with the process of planning and building a house.
It's possible to build a house without consulting an architect, and some homeowners prefer it that way to stay within budget. However, the pros of hiring an architect far outweigh the cons.
By taking over the task of supervising and undertaking all aspects of the home construction, architects make the experience of building a house stress-free for the homeowner.
Some renovations and builds don't go according to plan even when the homeowner hires an architect. Usually, it happens when there is a communication gap, or specific aspects of the job roles and responsibilities aren't clearly understood. Therefore, for the project to progress smoothly, we recommend getting clarity on some significant aspects before hiring architects.
Roles and responsibilities: Ask about the scope of the work that he will undertake to get a better idea of what he will do. Based on this, the homeowner can figure out his responsibilities. For instance, what will be the extent of the homeowner's involvement in selecting materials for the floors, cabinets and furniture? By being aware of expectations, it's easier for the homeowner to schedule his time so that the project isn't delayed on his account.
Schedule and strategy: One of the best ways to ensure that the project finishes on time is to ask the architect about the timeline of activities as well as his plan for handling delays if they arise. Often, a chosen tile may not be in stock, due to which the tiling of the bathrooms comes to a standstill. An experienced architect will have a strategy to prevent inordinate delays by sourcing the material from another location or even getting the homeowner to choose an alternative tile or material to ensure the work continues.
Troubleshooting skills: During the construction, several things can go wrong such as a conflict with the contractor or an accident that injures a labourer. It's advisable to ask the architect of the common problems that one might encounter and enquire how he handles such situations.
Ease of communication: It's pointless to hire a well-known architect if he doesn't have the time to meet you regularly to update you on progress or to answer questions. During the initial meetings, one should assess whether the architect is easily accessible. It's best to set up a schedule for weekly or fortnightly updates to keep track of progress.
Work samples: An architect has educational qualifications, certifications and licences, which permit him to practise the profession. However, the level of skill from one individual to another can vary considerably. Before hiring architects, one should always ask about his completed projects. If possible, site visits should be made to verify that the quality of finishes and the design style will be as per expectations. An experienced professional will be more than willing to share these details with you.
In general, the cost of architectural services is a percentage of the total project cost. It can range from 7.5% to 20% depending on the reputation or the experience of the architect. For a project with a cost estimate of Rs.30,00,000, it can vary between Rs.2,50,000 and Rs.6,00,000.
Some architects charge on a cost per square feet basis, ranging from Rs.30 to Rs.500 per square feet. Before hiring an architect, it's advisable to ask about his fees so that one can budget for it.
Besides word of mouth referrals, online listings are an excellent source for identifying architects. We have a list of verified professionals on our architect's directory on homify. Once you browse through the images of completed projects and identify a professional, submit the online form to get free quotes from architects.