Posts tagged #architect process



If you are considering making alterations to your home or property, and wish for advice, contact us on 0121 2466927.


Should you wish to liaise with us and ask questions regarding anything architecture related, such as 

Planning permission,

Permitted development rights,

Re-modling your home,

House Extensions, 

Listed Building applications 


When considering changing your home its best to Ask The Architect and we have outlined some of the reasons why in several documents that you will want to look through

Frequently Asked Questions            

We have answered some of your more frequently asked questions, such as “How much will it cost ? How long will it take?” to make sure you have some understanding of the process,  we have also created a small glossary to explain some of the terms that you may not have come across before, to help you with the process. 

The Project Process 

Here we have explained the various stages that you will go through, from concept design through to hand over of the finished project. We have given a brief description of what will happen along the way, and outlined what you should expect.  We are here to help you through, and will happily explain anything that you are not sure about.  

Get the Brief Right 

Here we have asked some questions of you, so that you will better understand your own wants and desires for your project, so that we may create a design brief.  This is done to crystallise what you want from your project. it sets out key requirements, outlines your aims and aspirations for your home.  We have also outlined the services that we can offer to aid you in this process

Contact us, for a free consultation with the Architect. 

The Project Process

The stages 

We provide much more than just the drawings for your home. we can provide a tailored solution to meet your needs, which you can be as involved in, or separated from as much as you wish. 

If you choose to have a full service, we can take you through the entire project, to completion or work with you only on the services that you wish for.

Call us for a free consultation, which can be carried out on the phone or face to face.


Consulting us at the earliest stage will allow us to gain a real feel for your needs so that together, we can establish a clear brief and a realistic budget. This will help reduce the overall design costs and help minimise any potential problems early on.


0    Strategy Definition 

The first thing we will do with you is identify what your needs objectives and visual goals are for your project, this allows us to understand what your aims are, and analyse how best to go about achieving this. We shall also look at the constraints that you may have on achieving your goals and how to overcome these.  

You will want to consider our questions for you in "Get the brief right" taking a snap shot of your wants for the project. 



1    Preparation and brief

We shall create a design brief, confirming key requirements and constraints for your project.  Project objectives, such as light, space, Quality  and even Sustainability aspirations will be considered. We will need to discuss your Project Budget, your strategy for when and how you wish to build, and how the site constraints will affect what you wish to do

We then go on to undertake a survey of your property, this will take a minimum of a few hours, and it allows us to visualise how best to achieve your goals whilst completing this, and again whilst producing the plans and elevations as existing. (example)  We may then go on to further develop the design brief and to assess the options available in order for you to access how to proceed i.e. if the project  would benefit from pre-application advice, topographical or ecological surveys. 

2    Concept Design 

We will work with you to develop designs that will interpret your ideas imaginatively, maximise your investment, ensure your project is cost effective and can help add real value to your home. We will come up with a range of ideas for you to discuss, develop and refine together

Implementation of the design brief

We will produce sketch proposals utilising the as existing drawings, plans, elevations, sections where appropriate. Working up outline proposals for structural and building services, outline specifications, sustainability strategy and preliminary cost plan if required at this stage

3    Developed Design 

Using the sketch design and liaising with yourselves we shall then prepare a developed design ready to submit. Where deemed necessary we may submit the proposals for pre-application advice to ascertain the likely hood of the proposals being favourably received 

We will then complete an application for planning permission, should this be in a conservation area, or be a we would complete a Design & Access Statement to accompany the proposals. (example) 


4    Technical Design

Once planning permission is approved we move on to the preparation of technical design and specification, We do this in two stages.

The first

Production information - Preparation of production information in sufficient detail to enable an Application for building regulation approval / statutory approvals.

At this stage the drawings could be used to gain budget costs for the scheme should you wish. 

The services of a Structural Engineer will almost certainly be required to complete calculations and the structural design for the scheme. Please note their, and all other professional fees required, are separate from our own. 

The Second

Preparation of further information for construction required under the building contract, in sufficient detail to enable a tender or tenders to be obtained. 

5    Construction

Guiding you through the construction phase we can help you select suitable builders, obtain appropriate prices for construction, appraise the quotes given, monitor progress and standards, supervise safety on site, liaise with other specialists and oversee the construction through to successful completion

6    Handover and close out 

Once the building has been completed we can assist with any initial teething problems that may occur, during your initial occupation period, and during this time we shall conclude any administration requirements of the building contract at this point

7    In Use 

Here we like to complete a Post occupancy review, reflecting on the Design brief with the finished outcome. 



Printable version - The Project Process 

RIBA plan of works - RIBA publication 

RIBA plan of works overview - RIBA publication  

Get the Brief Right




A brief is your wish-list, it will cover everything we need to know about what you want from your project. A well-written design brief is essential to success. It should be clear and unambiguous, setting out key requirements, outlining the vision and communicating your aims and aspirations.

It will describe the main function of the finished project, outline motivation and expectation, design direction, establish a single point of contact and where appropriate set a realistic timeframe and budget.

We can point out what is possible in terms of cost and design, asking you questions and making suggestions. We are well placed to help identify the best and worst spatial characteristics of your home and to offer ideas that will enhance your living space. Your contribution at this stage is vital and will involve a number of discussions which is essential for the success of your project. 

Our FAQ for you

What are you looking to change and why?


How are you looking to use it in the future - i.e. who will use it and for what?


What do you hope to achieve by this project in the short and long term?


Is there a specific approach or philosophy of design that you wish us to follow (e.g. traditional, contemporary, sunlight, sustainability, etc)  


Are there certain materials, fixtures or finishes you favour? 


Design direction - would you like the proposal to be contrasting or in keeping with existing, contemporary or traditional? 


Who will sign off decisions about design, costs and about day-to-day matters on-site?


How do you use the house at present?


Have you visualised how these activities will be accommodated and provided for 


What are your motivations and expectations for the build?


Is the house listed within a Conservation area or does it have any special covenants on the land (e.g. rights of way, easements, tree protection orders etc.) 


Do you have a specific time frame that you require the project to be completed within?


What level of finish do you want for your project? Do you have a budget for the build and furnishings  / fittings of the project?


Timetables and budgets, have you considered when you wish key stages to be completed, how much they should cost, and how they will be financed?


Printable version - Get the brief right