Architect, do I need one?

We hear many stories about self-builders who have decided to go it alone without the support of an experienced, professional architect. You only have to watch a few episodes of Grand Designs to see the difference.


We have considered the Top Five reasons why we genuinely feel that your project is in considerably safer hands with the appointment of an architect, like TFQ.


Number One: Knowledge

It goes without saying that an architect is going to bring knowledge. To be a chartered architect you must completed a long training process, involving considerable in-practice experience with hands on learning. Hiring any chartered architect will doubtless provide you with space planning expertise and bucket loads of ideas to best utilise your site, as well as offering new design ideas and inspiration.


However, hiring an experienced architect such as ourselves brings a career's worth of experience. To put it simply, if a problem comes up, chances are we've dealt with it previously on another project, meaning we know how to respond and keep things moving smoothly.


This prior experience is invaluable to ensure when problems do crop up, they are dealt with quickly and efficiently, this will save you time and money, ensuring your project remains on time and on budget.


Knowledge is a broad term and applies to all of the reasons we are going to list here, but we felt it needed its own paragraph to explain why.


Number Two: Planning

Planning is one of the first hurdles your project can stumble at. We have to propose buildings which are suitable, appropriate and respectful of their surroundings. Different councils have different priorities when it comes to planning, things are not black and white.


We have fantastic working relationships with local planning departments and have worked with many planning officers on projects for many years, so we understand certain things which are normally unlikely to get planning. This prior understanding is important as it means we can engage in open and honest conversations with our clients about the design, ensuring it is feasible from the start. What we do not want to happen is to design something which hasn't got a cat-in-hell's chance of getting permission to be built, spending our time and your money on something and then having to head back to square one.


Number Three: Connections


We work with many fantastic businesses across the South West, from main contractors through to plumbers, electricians, window fitters, pool experts, lighting suppliers, fire specialists, you name it.


We have spend years building great relationships with these businesses and know who to go to get the best service. We love recommending businesses to our clients as we know that the results will be fantastic.




Number Four: Technical Details


At various stages of the project process, technical expertise is essential to gaining the relevant approvals. The most common place where people who go it alone start to stumble is at the building regulations stage. Technical understanding of relevant details and requirements for complicated matters such as ventilation, construction methods and much more are needed to ensure the project gains approval quickly.


We have heard many occasions where someone going solo has suffered lengthy delays or no approval from building control on their project.


But why is building control important?


Regular visits from building control ensures that buildings are being constructed safely to the described specification in the drawing package, to ensure the building meets all the relevant regulations for safety, efficiency and quality.


In Britain we have a high standard of regulation, ensuring these are met is crucial to creating quality homes which are efficient to live in. Also, if they do not meet regulations there are legal powers that allow the council to demand you alter, at your cost, the building to make it compliant. So it is very sensible to ensure it complies before the walls go up.


Number Four: Complete Service

Receiving that complete service from an architect can transform how your project runs. From a physical perspective, in the end result and the actual building that gets constructed, both through the way it looks and the functionality of its design.

But also from a personal perspective. At TFQ we are hands on and ensure we help things run smoothly for you. We offer an honest and realistic approach to the way we work, to minimise shocks and surprises and keep the project on track.


We think that close relationship with our clients is crucial, so we ensure throughout that we are open, communicative and approachable, when your project is on site we will regularly visit with you to make sure everything is running to plan, so when it is complete we can both look back and be proud of what we produced together.

We offer full packages of design services for our clients, providing expertise across each of the RIBA stages of works, from initial design consultations through to technical drawings and construction oversight.


We take the stress away from our clients by offering comprehensive solutions ensuring projects meet deadlines, budgets and expectations every time.




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