Whether it's for a renovation project or new construction, when it comes to hiring a professional to design and plan the structure of the house, for several reasons, it's always better to hire a local interior architect rather than one from another city. Firstly, a local professional will have a better idea of elements that are suitable for the weather conditions in the area. Additionally, interior architects from Bhopal will know the best places in the city to source materials, and they will have a good working relationship with local contractors, ensuring that the work will be completed on schedule and within the budget.
Simply put, interior architecture refers to the science of designing and constructing the structure of the interiors of a building, whereas interior design is the art of planning the space and the look of the interiors. For a bigger project, it's not unusual for interior architects and designers to work together. Once the shell of the interior is in place, such as the placement of the loadbearing walls and electrical outlets, then the designer can take over to execute the finishes of the surfaces, the colours of the materials, the type of kitchen, L-shaped or U-shaped and other aesthetic details that make up the interiors of the house.
An interior architect is formally qualified through a university degree, whereas an interior design professional can get a certification after completing a course, not necessarily from a college or university. While an interior architect can also take on designing, a designer does not have the knowledge or skills to execute structural elements of the interiors.
For a house in Bhopal, the scope of an interior architect will be to plan the structure of the load bearing walls or the placement of walls to optimise the ventilation in the interiors to keep the house cool during the hot summers. The interior designer's work will include choosing the colours of the walls to create the perfect ambiance and to help in the selection of materials for the flooring, walls and furniture. For instance, although natural wood looks beautiful on the floor, it might not be suitable for the summer heat and the high humidity in Bhopal during the monsoon, which will cause the wood to warp or crack unless it is treated.
As with interior design, one can choose from a wide range of styles for the architecture of the house interiors. These range from classic to minimalist, besides country, rustic and industrial among others. The decision regarding the style of the house lies entirely with the homeowner. While it is possible to have a different style in the exterior and interior architecture (for example, a house with a traditional or rustic exterior façade but with ultra-modern interiors), most designers recommend following the same theme throughout to create a sense of synergy. The role of the interior architect is to plan and design the structure to ensure the easy execution of the aesthetic elements. For instance, the homeowner might choose to have domed ceilings in a classic-style home. The professional needs to ensure that the structure and load bearing walls are designed to support the dome without any risk of the roof collapsing.
The scope of work can determine the consulting or design fees that the professional will charge. In many cases, architecture and design firms offer comprehensive services, which include the structural and aesthetic components of the project. For a project that involves just aesthetic design such as changing the layout or redoing the flooring, the rates applicable will be the same as those charged by interior designers. Projects that require structural changes will require the consultation of a skilled interior architect. The fees, irrespective of whether it's an architect or designer, will vary depending on the model used by the professional – flat fee, percentage of the project, cost plus markup or cost per square feet.
For example, if the homeowner needs just the design and drawings so he can get his contractor to execute the project, then the professional fee payable to a designer or architect can vary from Rs. 50,000 to Rs.1.5 lakhs depending on whether sketches or 2D and 3D plans are required. If the professional charges on a cost per square foot basis, then the cost can range from Rs.40 per square feet for a designer to around Rs.400 per square feet for an interior architect. In general, an architect will be more expensive than a designer.
Since an architect's charges are more than that of a designer, it's advisable to take stock of the scope of the remodelling or construction before deciding on the right type of professional. If there is no structural element involved, then one can hire an interior designer. However, if the project involves shifting of the wall or relocating of electrical or plumbing connections, or the planning of the acoustics inside the house, it's always better to consult interior architects in Bhopal to ensure that the project is structurally sound.
One should look at the qualifications of the professional to ensure that he has completed formal education, else if the structure of the house isn't properly designed, it can result in the roof crashing down because the supporting walls weren't strong enough to bear the weight.
Word of mouth recommendations from friends and relatives is a reliable way to identify a suitable interior architect. However, one should ideally see a few projects executed by the professional before deciding to hire. For example, a professional who has completed several modern interior architecture projects might not have the expertise to handle more complicated vintage or classic style design that has completely different structural elements such as vaults and arches.
On homify, our interior architect directory includes images of the projects completed by the professionals listed on our website. After browsing through the images to get an idea of the style and expertise of the professional, you can submit the contact form to get quotes.