RBA Logo

How To Choose an Architect

May 2023

Finding an architect to work with is an important decision - how can you make sure you get it right?

You might have a rough idea of what you want to build or do to your house, you may have done a quick google search, asked friends for recommendations or used the RIBA’s ‘Find an Architect’ service, but how do you decide which architects to choose?

Start by making a shortlist

Have a good look at their websites. Check whether they are a member of an accredited body, such as the RIBA. Ask yourself some of the following questions:

Are they experienced in similar work?

Your architect should have carried out similar types of projects previously. For instance, if you are considering work to a listed building, a barn conversion or a new home, they should be able to demonstrate experience in this area.

Do I like their work?

It is also important that you like the style of their previous projects – whether you would prefer a contemporary building, or something more traditional. A good architect will be versatile and able to design to your tastes, whatever they are.

Are their values similar to mine?

Consider whether the architects’ ethos matches your own. Do they make sustainable design a high priority and demonstrate a concern for the environment, or understand the importance of respecting the building’s heritage?

Next steps

Once you have your shortlist, it’s time to contact a few architects. At Richmond bell, we are happy to meet prospective clients on a 'no-obligation' site visit. We will listen to your ideas and aspirations and understand what you hope to achieve with your project. We will make suggestions to help you refine your ideas and recommend consultants you might need to work with, such as planning consultants, ecologists or historians. We will also discuss timescales and advise how realistic they are and whether we can work to meet them. You might also wish to visit one of our previous projects, or speak to a former client to get a feel for the finished product.

Following the site visit, Richmond Bell will provide you with a fee quote for the architectural works and will set out the next steps for the project. We will also put you in touch with other recommended consultants, so that you can factor in their fees as well.

Do I like them?

You also need to feel a connection with your architect and be able to communicate with them. Do you think they understand your goals? And will you be able to establish a good working relationship with them? They should respond to queries quickly, efficiently and knowledgeably.

Think about the cost

Finally, let’s face it, money is also a major factor. A good architect will consider your budget and help you work out what you can realistically afford to do.

Get in touch

Richmond Bell would love to hear about your project, so please do get in contact.

Related Projects & Insights

All Insights

Let’s discuss your project

Contact Us

01722 324 835 info@richmondbellarchitects.com

20 Milford Street
Salisbury, Wiltshire