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Do you need to find the right architect for your building project?

Are you still deciding whether you need an architect for your project?

Would you like to know more about engaging and working with an architect?

You’ve come to the right place. This site is all about helping people to understand the architectural process and to find the right NZIA architect for your project.

EARTHQUAKE HELP!
To find NZIA Architectural Practices for help with your earthquake buiding issues click here


Why use a NZIA architect?
The New Zealand Institute of Architects Inc (NZIA) is New Zealand’s only professional architectural body. When you use one of the architectural practices listed here you do so with the knowledge that our members are highly-qualified professionals who make an outstanding contribution to local and international architecture. The NZIA Practice is a mark of quality you can rely on.

Only Registered Architects can call themselves Architects.
New Zealand architects’ professional status is protected by statute. Registration is earned through a combination of academic qualifications, significant practical experience and examination.

To check to that your architect is registered, visit the NZ Registered Architects Board web site.

Finding an Architect:
These listings are a good way to get in touch with architects in your area and you are assured that all these practices have at least one partner who is a Registered Architect and an NZIA member.

Choosing the right architect for you.
A good working relationship with your architect is vital to the success of any building project. Selecting the right architect for your project is a critical first step.

Where do you begin?

  • Many of these architects listed here will also have websites which will show you the sort of work they do.
  • You can also visit the NZIA website to view the work of award-winning residential and commercial architecture.
  • Personal recommendations by satisfied clients are another valuable way of selecting an architect.
  • Magazines are another good way to get a sense of who is out there and what sort of work they do. Publications which showcase the work of a cross-section of architects include: Architecture NZ, Houses NZ, Home, Urbis and Home and Garden.
How do you choose?

  • Do your homework. Compile a shortlist of architects (no more than three or four) who seem to be a good fit for your project. Give them some idea of your budget and expectations and ask if they are interested in talking to you about it.
  • Be well prepared for your first meeting. Put your thoughts down on paper to clarify your own thinking, but remember, it’s something which can and will evolve over a number of meetings.
  • It’s useful to have the architect write down their understanding of what you want (a reverse brief) and to refer this back to you for confirmation or further discussion.
  • Establish fees and services provided. Be very clear about how much you will be expected to pay at each stage of the project.
  • Ask to look at the architect’s previous work and perhaps talk to clients they have worked for. Remember though that ultimately this is about the architect’s ability to engage with you and come up with designs that are right for your needs and budget. It’s about fit and comfort level as much as it is about past achievements and reputation.
  • Don’t rush it! This is the most important decision you will make in the whole process, so allow yourself plenty of time. You are under no obligation to engage the first architect you speak to. On the other hand, meeting with too many architects may be confusing. Generally, two or three meetings should give you a sense of who you prefer.
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