Following up on our 2018 Blog –“10 Questions to Ask your Architect”, we thought we would dedicate this blog to how to choose an Architecture Firm. Finding an architect or architectural firm is now easier than ever with internet tools like HOUZZ, google, and search engines on local architect association websites.  However, choosing an architecture firm is a lot more involved then simply choosing a proximate or high-profile firm. The following three steps can help you choose the best firm for your project. 1. Be Prepared The first important thing before visiting an architecture firm is to be clear with the needs and goals of your project. It is important to develop your own “design brief”. At Lakeside Architecture we have an E-book that can help you do just that. “How to Prepare for your Design Project” is booklet with a series of questions that help develop your design vision and the priorities for your project. Once you have your needs and goals –your vision for your project, it is important to research an architecture firm that shares your vision. Hiring a very modern firm to build your traditional cottage design may not be the best fit for you or your project. Use the internet, referrals from family or friends to find a firm that has interest and experience in your design project. Choose three firms and meet with them to discuss your project. Analyze whether they will be able to transform your ideas and give them shape. Any good architectural firm with ample experience would be able to understand your ideas and give them life. The goal of this meeting isn’t simply to review the architect’s qualifications and abilities. You’re also looking for a work-style fit, since the success of your project will often rest on whether you can communicate effectively with your architect. Will regular status updates be provided and, if so, how often? Make sure you’re clear from the beginning what your expectations are. If you’ll be working with more than one person at the firm you choose, be sure to learn as much as possible about the employees and contractors who will be helping with your project. Ask to speak with the architect’s colleagues to ensure they’ll be the right personality fit for your project. 2. Ask Questions Don’t be afraid to ask hard-hitting questions about how the architect will handle the many challenges that arise over the course of a project like yours. Make sure the firm you choose has the right insurance in place to cover any problems and get a full quote that builds in extra room for unforeseen expenses while still fitting within your budget. To ensure your upcoming project is as successful as possible, take extra time in your search for an architect to carry out the necessary duties. If you find a professional who has the skills and experience to handle the job and also determine your communication styles mesh, you’ll already have steered your project in the right direction. 3. Make Project Visits Ask them whether they will be able to show their completed projects or current projects. Visit the sites of current project to analyze their working method. If possible, pay a visit to completed projects to have a look at their designs, how efficiently they have utilized the spaces, the materials used and observe everything to take a decision. If opportunity permits, discuss with the owners about their relationship with the firm and how satisfied they were with architecture firm. The above important three steps will help you to be well prepared in choosing a firm with confidence. You can take your dream can be turned into reality if and only if you are satisfied and trust your firm.