Room addition - How do I find a designer/architect?
August 20, 2012 in Design Dilemma
We are considering adding an additional bedroom, full bathroom and laundry room over our garage. Would an architect be the best person to contact for this? Do architects do something as small as this or are there others that I should consider?
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Amanda Fossum Design
I would start by searching NARI in your area. You can also call your local permit office and see which contractor has been pulling the most permits for the kind of work you're looking to have done. If someone tells you that you don't need a permit...RUN!
August 20, 2012 at 2:29pm   
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Thanks for your idea!
August 24, 2012 at 7:18am   
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Walsh Krowka & Associates, Inc
It depends on the architect and the firm. Some architects specialize in residential architecture; I would stick with them. Bigger firms deal with large commercial projects and consider projects like yours an annoyance. I would suggest a web search for residential architects in your area, meet with the top two or three at their office. It's important you have some chemistry with them as you will be spending some quality time together.

Get references and visit one or two of their projects if possible. In my opinion, architects will give you a better project than one designed by a builder. Architects are more creative give more thought to space, light, and form than builders will. Of course, I'm an architect so I am biased. I used to be a Building Official in a local jursidiction and have review many plans by builders as well, so my opinion is not simply a bias.
Check the link above to a great description of what an architect can do for you, and how to find one. It will be an exciting endeavor.

Good luck

August 24, 2012 at 9:07am     
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SWA Architects
You most certainly want to get an architect involved. Not to be too biased, but an architect will be more attuned to your wants and needs than only involving a builder, and yes a residential architect will take on any project, and this is by no means too small of one.

If you do not have any personal recommendations from friends, neighbors, etc., start right here on Houzz. You can search design professionals right in your area and get an idea of their work.

Get in touch with 2 or 3 that look like they might be the right fit your project. Most architects, or a good architect, will come to your home for a free consultation to get a sense of your existing home and what you are looking to do and discuss the feasibility of the project and your budget. Use this opportunity as an interview and make a selection based on whom you feel most comfortable with and that will provide you with the services that make your addition a reality.

The key when talking bout your project with an architect is to give them as much information about what you are looking for and what your budget is. The more information you can provide them, the more quality service that will be provided. I feel like a Houzz marketer here, but you are in the perfect spot, create an ideabook with images that you like, and what you are hoping your addition can be. Architects are very visual, and we all have different ideas on what terms like modern, or classic, or french country mean, so use these images to really convey what you want. Your architect and you should become a team to endeavor on the project, not just a client and service provider.
August 24, 2012 at 1:31pm     
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