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Working with an Architect

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Services that an architect can provide

Private House Glencree - ABK Architects, Shortlisted , Best House, Irish Architecture Awards 2009

Private House Glencree - ABK Architects, Shortlisted , Best House, Irish Architecture Awards 2009

An architect offers a level of professional service and expertise which no other building professional can provide. An RIAI architect is professionally qualified, legally registered to practice and bound by a code of ethics established by The Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland.

An architect works as a team leader as well as an individual. In many building projects the role of the architect is to coordinate a team of specialist consultants such as landscape architects, engineers, quantity surveyors,interior designers, builders and subcontractors.

The fees charged by an architect for design and documentation rarely exceed one per cent of the total cost of constructing and operating the building throughout its useful life. By investing in the services of an architect, you ensure an exploration of various options for the design of your building. Through good design, an architect can enhance the value of your building and may produce significant savings, especially when it comes to operating, staffing and/or tenanting the building.

You and your architect will identify the service to be provided in your agreement and their fee will depend on the scope of their appointment. Services provided by architects include:

Building Design
The primary training of an architect is in the design of buildings in terms of function, form and regulatory compliance

Brief Development
A good brief is the first step to delivering a successful project. Often clients require help from an expert in formulating the brief for their project and the architect is normally best-placed to assist.

Applying for Planning Permission
Advising if your project requires planning permission and producing the relevant information for making an application to the local authority. You may also engage an architect to provide services in connection with planning appeals. Your architect may communicate on your behalf with planning authorities.

Design Certifier and Assigned Certifier
An architect is typically the most appropriate professional to act as Design Certifier and Assigned Certifier under the Building Control (Amendment) Regulations, S.I.9 of 2014. Although your architect may also be your Assigned Certifier, there is a requirement under S.I.9 that the appointment be made under a separate agreement.

Project Supervisor Design Process (PSDP)
Your architect may act as PSDP or an alternative person  may be appointed to the role.

Administrating the Building Contract
Dealing on your behalf with the building contractor and administrating the project to ensure that it is delivered in accordance with the design and planning permission.

Coordinating other Consultants
Your project may require the input of specialist consultants such as a Structural Engineer or Quantity Surveyor, and your architect will coordinate their involvement.

Measurement Survey & Drawings
Measure existing buildings for the purpose of making drawings to assist in design proposals for alterations or additions.

Condition Survey
Inspect and establish the condition of a property and prepare a report.

Interior Design
You may engage your architect to provide an interior design service, advising on loose furniture, artworks and finishes.

Sustainability Advice and Design
Your architect can advise you how to optimising orientation, microclimate, building fabric, lifecycle costing, energy and water consumption and ensure compliance with Building Regulations. Additionally, if you require options for future proofing your building against future costs, or creating a zero carbon building the implications can be established by a specific studies at an early stage.

Conservation skills
If the building you own is ‘historic’, a ‘Protected Structure’ or in an ‘Architectural Conservation Area’ you will need the advice of an architect with skills in conservation. Even if your building is not listed by the Planning Authority it can still be worthy of conservation and you will want to make sure that its character is not damaged in the process of any alterations or extensions you plan to carry out.

Project-management
The architect normally is best positioned to act as the project-manager coordinating the other inputs to deliver a project successfully.

Urban Design & Master-Planning
Architects are at the forefront of the design of urban spaces in existing and proposed sections of our towns and cities.

Dispute Resolution Services
Architects offer dispute resolution services such as mediation and conciliation.

>>Read More: 20 Questions before you start