Skip to main content

If you are looking to start a residential construction project, then you are probably wondering if you need to hire an architect. 

Nearly all construction projects can benefit from a well-developed set of plans that only an architect can provide. However, depending on your project scope, it may be possible to get away without hiring an architect. 

But since the plans are the foundational framework that your project will be built on, oftentimes bringing in an architect to your project becomes an invaluable professional resource. 

In this article, we will explain why no matter the scope of your project, you should hire an architect. 

Why Should You Hire An Architect In The First Place?

While having your project designed by an architect almost guarantees you will be satisfied with the final outcome, the reality is that many people try to avoid hiring an architect in order to save money.

That’s because many consider having their renovation, remodel, or addition, designed by an architect as an expensive luxury that isn’t a realistic option for their budget. 

Unfortunately, architecture services are not always accessible to people, and many people don’t consider the value of enlisting the help of a cost effective architect for their home projects.

Once you understand the benefits an architect provides to your project, hiring one becomes a no-brainer decision. Architects are trained to solve problems, and as a consultant on your project will ensure a high-quality design and construction plan.

So, what are the specific benefits of hiring an architect?

The Benefits of Hiring An Architect For A Residential Project

Understanding the benefits you will get from hiring an architect for a residential project is essential to deciding whether you will enlist help from a professional architecture firm. 

While the possible benefits of hiring an architect are endless, here are the top reasons to hire an architect.

Architects working on a project

Benefit #1: Finding The Right Architect is a Smart Project Investment That Will Save You Money in the Long Run

The upfront cost of hiring a licensed architect stops many people from working with a professional to design their residential project. However, one of the most significant benefits of hiring an architect is that you will save money in the long run by avoiding detrimental errors that could occur if you don’t enlist expert help from the start.

Architects can help ensure that planning your project will happen promptly, without any design errors. Additionally, hiring an architect will help mitigate risk in your project that could incur high costs in the future.

A professional architect will help you stay within your budget and track your expenses to determine what areas of the project are most crucial to the outcome. The correct design plan will save you thousands in the long run by avoiding wasted time and fees that may be incurred. 

Simply put, instead of being a nice-to-have luxury, a quality architect can save you money over the long run by adding significant value to your project. And if you ever plan to sell your home in the future, having an architect involved will dramatically increase its resale value. Never underestimate the value of a well-thought-out floor plan and good design.

Benefit #2: An Architect Will Make Your Life Easier Thanks to a Less Stressful Project Process

Without the proper guidance, the design and construction process can quickly turn into a nightmare. After all, the process of creating a new home design isn’t easy.

Architects will run your residential project through a logical, step-by-step process that completes your project efficiently and gives you peace of mind during the entire process. The team at JMA Architects follows a specific process for each architecture project to make the experience easier and stress-free for you. Below are the abbreviated version of the six steps that JMA architects follows to ensure an enjoyable experience for all of our clients.

  • Pre-design phase to establish your goals and vision
  • Schematic design phase to allow you to review all project components
  • Design development phase to develop drawings and 3D renderings of your project to guide the design process
  • Construction documents phase to produce working drawings and specifications for all bidding and construction purposes
  • Project bid review to allow JMA architects to assist you during the entire bidding process
  • Construction observation to assist you during the entire construction process

Benefit #3: Architects Will Add Significant Design & Functional Value

Hiring an architect for your residential project is essential to designing your home renovations or additions. While you may have a general idea of the upgrades you want for your home, you can only guarantee that your design goals will be successful and functional by enlisting help from an architect service.

An architect will help you design a home addition or remodel in the style you want but can also help you go deeper and explore options that are functional and compatible with your lifestyle. 

A great architect will help you design a more aesthetically pleasing, accessible, and functional space for you. Having a home designed by an architect will be a great investment that enhances your everyday life.

Benefit #4: Architects Will Ensure The Site & Structure Compliment Each Other

Many people who don’t enlist the help of an architect for their residential construction project eventually run into issues if their site and structure are incompatible. 

An architect will ensure that your site and structure complement each other before beginning the design process to guarantee that the experience is seamless and straightforward.

Without an architect, you might discover that different areas of your site and structure do not fit together, incurring extra costs that you didn’t consider in your budget. By hiring an architect, you can avoid stressful situations and obstacles in the design stage.

Benefit #5: An Architect Can Help You Preview The Design Before Construction Begins

Working with an architect can help you understand and preview the design of your home renovations or additions before the construction process begins. For example, 3D rendering software can offer you a realistic visual impression of your project’s appearance upon completion.

The best architects will provide you with past 3D renderings they’ve completed to help you understand their skillset and visualize the design elements and structures you want in your project. 

Without hiring an architect to provide you with realistic previews on the proposed exterior and interior design, you’re essentially flying blind. 

Benefit #6: An Architect Can Manage The Construction Process On Your Behalf

Dealing with the construction phase of your residential project can be incredibly stressful if you aren’t sure what to look for to guarantee that everything is being completed to your specifications.

An architect will ensure that your residential project is done according to plan, which is especially helpful if you aren’t experienced in construction. If the contractor on your project strays from the plan, an architect will identify the issue to guarantee that it’s resolved promptly.

Benefit #7: An Architect Can Help You Select Materials & Finishes That Fit Your Budget

Planning your upcoming residential project is more than simply sketching a design and drawing up plans for how you want your renovations or additions to appear. The materials for your project are also very important, and an architect is often able to advise you on what the best options are when taking into account the entire design of the home and your budget.

Working with an architect is the best way to guarantee that your design goals are met while staying within your budget. Selecting proper materials and finishes is also essential to avoid future costs that go over your budget due to issues with your building materials.

Benefit #8: Architects Can Help You Find Project Partners & Coordinate Between Them

Architects are a valuable resource for your residential project, for their creative contributions and to help you find and connect with project partners. 

For instance, your residential project will likely need to partner with other services like interior designers, contractors, or landscape architects.

Instead of conducting research solo and going through the stressful process of finding and vetting partners, an architect can coordinate the search for other building professionals who share their design philosophy.

Partners discussing a project

Ask The Architect: Answers To Common Questions

Now that you know the benefits of hiring an architect, you may have some additional follow-up questions. Below are answers to some common questions homeowners typically have when choosing whether to hire an architect.

What Types of Residential Projects Can Architects Help With?

Architects can help with a variety of residential projects. Some residential projects you might consider hiring an architect for include brand-new, renovated, or expanded single-family homes, townhouses, apartments, or multi-family housing.

What Residential Services Can an Architect Offer?

You can expect standard services from an architect, including design development, programming/pre-design, construction documents, hiring contractors, schematic design, and overseeing construction.

Do You Still Need to Hire a General Contractor if You Hire an Architect?

While you must still hire a general contractor after you hire an architect, an architect can help you find experienced contractors to guarantee a successful project.

For instance, JMA architects provide drawings and specifications so multiple contractors can bid on your residential project. JMA architects can then help you analyze each bid and help you select reputable contractors.

What Parts of a Residential Project Are Architects Responsible For?

An architect is responsible for the structural design of your project and overall project planning. Architects are also responsible for the visual appearance of your residential property and overseeing construction to ensure that your vision is met.

How Much Does it Cost to Hire an Architect?

An architect’s cost depends on your project’s scope, timeline, and necessary materials. Architects generally cost around 5-10% of your construction cost but can range anywhere from a few thousand dollars to tens of thousands for extensive, full-home services. 

What Traits Should You Look for When Hiring an Architect?

There are various traits to inquire about when you have an architecture consultation. However, it would help if you prioritized architects with traits like creativity, confidence, leadership, foresight, and experience with projects similar to your residential project.

Furthermore, you can learn about an architect through their portfolio or by asking the architect questions about their experience and costs.

What is the First Step to Hire an Architect?

The first step to hiring an architect is to clarify the details of your upcoming residential project. Defining everything you know about your project will make hiring an architect much more straightforward. Plan your ultimate goals, budget, schedule, scope, and complexity of your residential project to begin the hiring process.

From there, we recommend preparing for your initial consultation before moving forward with setting up appointments with local architects in your area.

Final Thoughts On Hiring an Architect

Expert architects are an invaluable resource for your project that will undoubtedly increase the final design value of your home along with making the process much less stressful. 

JMA Architects provides advanced architectural services while maintaining open communication with our clients to guarantee that your residential project is straightforward and stress-free. 

Contact the expert architects at JMA Architects today to set up a consultation so we can help you plan out the project you are considering. 

John Musinski is the founder and Principal Architect at JMA Architects. John has worked on different building types from small residential to large scale institutional projects. He is accomplished in new construction, additions, renovations, and restoration projects. If you have a project you would like to discuss with John, call 201 529 3524.