Communication is key when it comes to how successful the relationship with your architect can be. Keep in mind that they don’t know you, your interpretation of certain descriptive words may be totally different to there’s. Don’t be afraid to be painfully obvious with what you want, even if you think it sounds like you’re teaching them to suck eggs they won’t see it that way and will be grateful for as clear a vision as possible.
Here are my 6 things you must give to your architect:
- A written brief on how you like to live. E.g. do you enjoy entertaining? Have you got children that come in with muddy boots? Do you have family that live far away and therefore stay over when they visit? Do you prefer outdoor living? Where do you want the children to be doing their homework when they come back from school? All of these things give the architect a really clear picture as to how you use the space in your home and what is important to you in the new design.
- Share your Pinterest board. Nothing paints a clearer picture than a picture! Start with creating a board of everything you like, leave it a few days and then go back to that board and begin deleting things that you now have doubts about.
- Existing Floor plans. If you have existing floor plans then these are really useful to share with your architect before your first meeting. In fact, if you share these with prospective architects that’s even better as you’ll know who is prepared when they come to meet you by what ideas they already have based on assessing the current space.
- Your own drawings. Don’t be afraid to sketch a few ideas down over the existing floor plans or on plain paper. It really helps to get you thinking about the space you want to create before you see the architects drawings in return.
- The separate spaces you want in your home. If you are changing your entire home, or building a new home be clear on the essential spaces that you want to compliment your lifestyle. Some people want just two large open plan rooms on the ground floor, others prefer to have separate rooms for people to split off into. Again, imagine your life and different scenarios of family living.
- Your budget. Be very clear on your budget. Remember that you will need to let them know whether that is your total budget for all renovations, furnishings, garden etc so that the amount allocated for the build can be determined. Don’t worry if you don’t know how much things cost, they should be able to help steer you once they know what you want to achieve and how much you have got to make that happen.
Personally we have a phased budget where we are intending to submit out planning application but the work will be completed over a phased period of 5 years. We have made this very clear to the architect as it’s important that the design takes that into account.
Finally, please enjoy the process! This is the creative bit where you can begin visualising your project with a professional who can help you achieve your dream home. Good luck and please let me know if there’s anything you would add to the above list, I’d love to hear from you!