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Do I need to hire an architect on my new build project?

Written by Theo Tomlin ,
Published on November 30, 2023 at 1:12:10 PM PST November 30, 2023 at 1:12:10 PM PSTth, November 30, 2023 at 1:12:10 PM PST
Do I need to hire an architect?

Architects are the masters of utilising space for your home – They’re able to assess and spot the potential locked away inside. Furthermore, with their detailed knowledge of planning policy, they’re able to guide you through the ins and outs of dealing with your local authority. This makes them an incredibly useful professional to have onboard.

An architect can be very useful if you’re not sure what you want. Architects are trained to think outside the box and visualise spaces and therefore could push your ideas further.

Just one of the stunning projects from Pritpal Chana architects

But architects aren’t just limited to home design – they can also help secure your project the all-important planning permission. Alongside expert design, they can also act as your planning agent, handling everything from putting together the paperwork to liaising with the council on your behalf.

By having an architect handling your planning process, you not only avoid any admin headaches but also give yourself the best chance of approval. This could help you save budget in the long run, as reversing planning refusal can be an extremely costly process.

Another beautiful project by Pritpal Chana Architects

When to consider using an architect during the planning stage

  • You need help meeting permitted development rights guidelines
  • You want to give yourself the best chance of getting first-time approval for a full planning application
  • Your home is a listed building
  • You live in a conservation area
  • You live in a flat or maisonette
  • Your home is affected by other planning restrictions, such as being located in a flood zone or near a site of archaeological interest

I spoke with our good friends at PC Architects and conducted a Q&A with Managing Director Pritpal Chana on his view on why you should hire an architect.

Q. What is the role of an architect?

For me the role of an Architect is to help evoke a new perception of a space through design.

Q. How much does an architect cost?

This all depends on the scope of the works. But we can work with all budgets.

Q. How long does it take to become an architect?

The minimum study and training time to become a registered architect in the UK is seven to eight years.

Q. How can someone make sure they choose an architect who is right for them?

You always need to look at their work but also have a discussion to make sure you feel you can build a relationship. Working with an architect is a long-term commitment and you want to get on.

Q. Can an architect help with planning permission?

Yes, the right architect has the knowledge and experience to support you in submitting a successful planning application.

Q. Can an architect help with building regulations?

Absolutely. An architect will assist with producing the building regulation drawings alongside a structural engineer.

Q. Hiring an architect can seem expensive. How can an architect save me money?

Through good design an architect can make a space feel and flow much better. Your enjoyment every day isn't a cost you can quantify. They can also help you avoid the most common pitfalls of projects and save money in the long-term.

Q. What different types of project are architects hired for?

We work with clients on their homes for all size projects which are design-led.

Q. At what stage should someone hire an architect?

From experience, an architect is the first professional anyone should engage with when embarking on a build and design project.

Final comments from Pritpal:

“An Architect should not be viewed as a place where you can get a drawing for planning permission and a builder however someone who will be redefining the spaces your family use on a daily basis. Therefore really look for someone with creativity and someone you can build a relationship with.”

Another peek into the projects undertaken by Pritpal Chana Architects

We thank Pritpal for his time and insight - we can see from the examples here how Pritpal and his team have, in his own words, evoked a new perception of a space through design - and redefined spaces that families use on a daily basis.

Pritpal Chana Architects are an award winning practice, with a reputation for delivering a professional service and considered approach. They are fully registered with the Architects Registration Board (ARB) and are RIBA accredited. If you would like to get in touch with Pritpal and his team, you can find their contact details on their website on the link below.

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