Questions to ask a potential architect.

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Real Estate

Questions to ask a potential architect.

Building a home can be an overwhelming endeavor. Selecting a qualified and licensed architect who is the best fit for both the project and the customer is crucial.

Residential and commercial architect, Jeff Schneider, AIA, licensed in NJ and VT advises that when working with an architect there are three basic variables that influence the design of any project:

  1. What the client brings to the table in terms of program, goals and preferences. - Create a vision board to effectively communicate your goals.
  2. The input of the architect’s, ideology and experiences. - Ask for references and previous work completed. 
  3. The site and the associated context of the project. - All details impact the project in some way. 

A client should inquire about the relative importance placed upon each of these three inputs because this will provide an indication of the potential end result.

Schneider suggests clients ask a potential architect if the final product will be a result of the architect’s insistence to always design in a particular style, regardless of site context and client preference or if the architect acts more as a facilitator to achieve the client’s goals for a particular site.

Most successful design solutions strike an equal balance between the three variables, but there are cases where one factor drives the process more than the others. One example of this is when a client has a strong preference for a particular style, image or philosophy. These clients may have a limited field of designers to choose from. In cases such as these the best question for the architect may be “when can you get started?”

To learn more about Jeff Schneider, AIA, visit