Building a new home may be one of the biggest decisions of your life and should never be treated lightly.
On average, the procurement of a new residence will take almost a year and 80-90% of your financial resources. With so much at stake and with so many pitfalls along the way, it makes sense to consider using qualified, registered and experienced professionals.
There are a number of consultants involved in this process:
- The Architect (Chief Consultant, responsible for coordinating the services of all the other consultants and building practitioners).
- Geo-Technical Consultants (responsible for soil testing and reporting).
- Land Surveyors (responsible for property and land surveying).
- Structural Engineer (responsible for design, documentation and certification of structural elements of the new residence).
- Civil Engineer (responsible for all civil works on the site).
- Registered Building Practitioner (RBP – builder, responsible for the procurement of the building itself).
- Before considering who will be the Chief Consultant, ask yourself these important questions:
- What style of building do I want achieve? Will it be simple, modern, open-planned, volumetric, stylistic or even ecologically sustainable…?
- Where is my site? Will it require a Town Planning Permit?
- Should I build myself, or engage the services of a qualified Registered Building
- Practitioner? If I do, whom can I rely on to control the time, cost and quality…?
- What is my budget, including consultants, permits and building construction fees?
- What does an architect do?
The Architect’s role goes far beyond that of designer or documenter of building drawings and specifications. The role of the Architect should be about turning an idea into reality and focusing on the project delivery as a turn-key operation; from start to finish.
Prior to an Architect commencing the design, a comprehensive Design Brief is established with the client, followed by the signing of A Client and Architect Agreement. This is issued by the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) and clearly outlines the budget, fees and responsibilities of both parties.
During the design, documentation and actual construction of your project there are countless decisions to be made. Some decisions may appear quite simple, while others can in fact be extremely complex. An architect is someone qualified to make these decisions on your behalf. They are involved in the decision-making process throughout the entire project.
Sometimes clients feel as though they can save a few dollars by engaging a draftsperson instead of an Architect to procure a set of building drawings. But often the drawings they receive are so basic and so unresolved they cannot be effectively priced off yet alone built from. In such instances, the client is left having to do all of the hard work themselves in order to finish the project. They find themselves having to review quotations and estimates all by themselves. Often unable to decipher what the figures in fact mean? They find themselves signing contracts designed to entirely benefit the builder. They find themselves on site day after day, having to resolve countless issues that arise during construction. They are forced to make rash, illinformed decisions, which often lead to costly mistakes. Not to mention the endless frustration for the builder and sub-trades knowing that are being guided by someone with little to no industry experience. Changes are made on a daily basis and before long the builder is putting in variations for these changes and the costs continue to escalate and the completion date seems further and further away.
Often, the quality of the project is compromised in attempt to reign in the costs. Eventually, when the project is completed and clients have audited their project they find they’ve gone over time, over budget and arrived at a result well below their initial expectations. The ‘false economy’ of choosing a draftsperson instead of an architect becomes a painfully reality, learned all too late.
A recent study by the Australian Institute of Architects established that by cutting the costs of an architectural consultant’s fee by just 2-3%, clients ended up paying 11% more for their projects, which were often riddled with compromises, construction problems and time overruns. The realities are quite confronting.
AMG Architects are committed to providing you with an entire service focused on project delivery; within budget, on time and to the highest practical quality.
* To learn more contact AMG Architects and arrange a time to meet and discuss the details of your project.