Working with an Architect can help you get the most out of your building design or renovation project throughout the entire design and construction phase and even save you money in the process. Selecting an Architect for your project is like selecting a “partner”. As much as you are hiring a design expert, you want a consultant who makes you feel comfortable and with whom you can have open communication. Most importantly, you want a designer with experience in your project type.
You should start looking for an Architect as soon as you make the decision to begin planning your project. Involving an Architect early in the process will help you avoid costly mistakes and will ensure your overall satisfaction with the project.
So where do you begin looking for a good Architect?
- Word-of-Mouth Referrals
Word-of-mouth referral is the most influential and effective way of selecting a good Architect. Recommendations from those you know who have worked with an Architect previously can prove very reliable. Especially when starting out for the very first time, you need the confidence that comes from a quality referral. Why not ask around?
Organized professional groups such as the Architectural Association of Kenya [AAK] or BORAQS regularly hold networking events geared towards engaging different key players in the built environment. Most events are open not only to members but also to non-members as well. Attending these events helps to build long-term relationships, meeting and getting to know professionals who you can assist and who can potentially help you in return.
- Recommendations from Other Architects
Architects specialize in different areas of design. These fields of specialization range from Historic Preservation or Renovation Architecture, Residential Architecture, Commercial Architecture, Interior Design Architecture, Green Design Architecture, Landscape Architecture Urban Design and Industrial Architecture among many others. If your project is particularly out of the scope of his/her expertise, an Architect would very well easily refer you to another Architect who is knowledgeable in the area of your interest.
- Leads from Architectural Design Magazines
Architectural design magazines are a good way to find Architects. These publish new content either quarterly or bi-annually. They regularly feature the work of top Architects and designers as well as the best in style and culture. Popular local magazines in Kenya include The “Architect” magazine which contains great leads, among others.
- BORAQS Website
In Kenya, the Board of Registration of Architects and Quantity Surveyors [BORAQS] has made sourcing of Architects a lot easier. The BORAQS website is an excellent client resource tool. With the click of a button, it is possible to access a database of more than seven hundred registered Architects who are in good standing with the board. Check it out: https://boraqs.or.ke/registered/architects
In conclusion, before you settle on a suitable Architect, it is important to carry out your due diligence. Ask your prospective Architect to share their Client references with you. It is also good to ask to check out the projects they have done before which are similar to what you’re in the market for. Some Architects have great portfolios uploaded on their websites for ease of referencing as well.
Knowledge of the tools to find the right expert goes a long way to ensure that you land in the right builders’ hands – those of licensed architectural design professionals. Builders Pith is an excellent choice!