Choosing an Architect
Having chosen your plot you are now ready for the next phase, choosing your architect. This can be done earlier if you are very clear about what you want in that case you will of bought a plot to fit the plan. However if you have decided on your plot first it is important to see what you can expect to get on it.
As with most things it is always best to go on a referral from some one you know and whose opinion you trust but failing that don't be afraid to ask for references. There are a number of architects advertising in your local area, we have used different ones over the years depending on how busy they are when we need them or what type of build is required and have found them to be very good.
An architect will deal with all the planning permission submissions and building regulations you require and liaise with the local authority as to what they will and wont allow, he will also produce a full set of drawings for you to get prices from trades/builders it is always advisable to ask for a few copies of the plans as you will need to leave one with the builder etc. for them to be able to price things and work from.
Cost? I would suggest you allow at least £2,000.00 for Architect costs as a lot of work is involved in preparing working drawings but remember the more times you change your mind and alter things the greater the cost so think clearly about what bits are important in your dream house, sizes and layout then think about the parts you would like but aren't essential perhaps things like a balcony it would be nice in the summer but you may receive objections to that when it comes to planning depending on where it is.
Allow approximately 3 months to get your plans approved longer if there are more conditions applied this can sometimes seem an eternal length of time when you want to get on but don't be tempted to jump the gun and start without planning permission as this can be a costly exercise.
(Image courtesy of bygraphics/wordpress) not a plan of any of our buildings.