Let Your Architect Complete the Project
The question of performance and follow-through in architecture is the same as any other aspect of life. Without good follow-through a brilliant idea can fail.
Not contracting with the architect for follow-up and project inspections can actually cost more in the long run.
The typical scenario goes something like this: The client doesn’t want to pay the full architectural fee but would like to have the architect’s creative input in planning. The client then turns over the plans to a builder for construction with drawings that look final, but are actually incomplete because the architect has not been allowed to get to the point of drawing up the final construction documents. The client thinks this will save money but since most of us are not experts in construction we are at the mercy of the builder’s decisions at hundreds of intersections throughout the project. If, however, we have a complete set of drawings and specifications agreed to in advance by the architect and client, the builder has a firm set of guidelines. The builder also has the architect’s assistance whenever needed during construction.
There is simply no way that most clients will be able to tell whether the builder is giving them the value that they expect, although the project may look fine during construction and even at completion. Problems usually do not develop until much later – sometimes years.
Without the architect as supervisor of the project, you are left to negotiate in an area that most of us know little about. Let’s put it this way: would you want to negotiate with your surgeon before he performs your operation?
Who is best qualified to help you when you are faced with a barrage of selections? Your architect, with an arsenal of catalogs, samples and knowledge of product quality that make a world of difference. For the best results be sure to contract your architect from design development right on through construction administration.