Why should I use an Architect?

Before employing the services offered by Derrick Whittaker Architect it’s worth understanding why you should employ an Architect. The fact is that anyone can design buildings. Unfortunately many people do …with varied results. When you employ an Architect, your interests are protected. Architects practising in the UK are:

  1. “…subject to a statutory code of practice set up to protect the interests of Clients, have compulsory Professional Indemnity Insurance to protect their client’s interests (many “designers” are uninsured, leaving clients with potential future problems)”
  2. Properly trained, for seven years, academically and practically, before being allowed to practise.
  3. Obliged to undergo regular further training (Continuing Professional Development)
  4. The Architects Registration Board (the ARB) investigates complaints by clients – and unlike any other Professional Regulatory Body – has majority lay representation to ensure that clients’ interests are properly considered. This model of regulation is being considered by other professions for the reform of their Regulatory Bodies.

When designing there are many factors to consider, specific constraints to work around, client requests and planners to please; the process of developing a concept design into a beautiful final build is unique to every project and each and every project is considered on its merits and respecting the project specific context.

Incidentally it is an offence to use the title “Architect” in the UK unless registered with the ARB. You can check at the ARB website (see the “Links” page) to see whether someone is a Registered Architect – and if they call themselves an Architect without registration they are committing a criminal offence. It makes sense to use a properly trained and qualified professional.

Can’t my builder do the drawings?

Possibly he can, and in some cases, especially for very small jobs, this may be satisfactory. However, you are paying for the drawings in the price for the works. And you need to satisfy yourself that the drawings have been prepared by someone competent to do this. Many projects are subject to the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations, which put a duty on the client to ensure that the designer is competent.