Ten things you need to think about before starting an architecture project

What you should know to design and plan your new home.

The opportunity to design and build your own house is exciting SteelCell, but careful planning will be required at the very beginning. Consider your aspirations and your needs prior to meeting an architect. This will help you create a framework for your project. Hunter Architects & Planners are used to dealing with clients that have never undertaken similar projects before. So don’t fret if your ideas seem vague. It is part of their role to help you develop a project brief.

We have listed our Top 10 Things to Consider Before Meeting:

Project in Cheshire East & West

List of wishes or brief

Think about the areas and finishes most critical to the success of your architectural design. What are you after? A family room better connected to your garden. An en suite master bedroom with dressing area. Are there any “must-haves” or “would like to haves?” It is likely that the brief will evolve throughout the course of the project.

The scope and style

In addition to the specific spaces and finishes, it’s also important to take into account the future performance of the building and the way the house is used. Is future adaptation required? Should the home be energy-efficient or sustainable? What are your favorite materials or styles?


What budget are you looking at? Do you have any contingencies? Are there conditions to the funding (re-mortgage) and where is it coming from? What would be the consequences if a project was overspent? Is the budget realistic? The project could be completed in stages, etc.

RIBA Chartered Architects Cheshire East & West


It is important to understand the timelines of the projects in order to develop a strategy and plan.

i. If you are expecting any major life changes (school tests, a baby or other important events), then consider this.

ii. Take into account when you would like to begin or finish the construction work

iii. You should also consider the financial impact of your project.

iv. Think about what would happen if timeframes are not met

What is the purpose of your project?

Understanding and analyzing why you require the project to be built can prove very helpful. As an example, while one option could be to add a bedroom to the house, the real need may be to create a room that is larger to allow for certain furniture pieces or improve sound insulation. Consider the possibilities of future changes and flexibility.

How will you solve the problems?

The same as understanding the specific need, knowing what issues need to be resolved helps you understand exactly what your project should be. The house is dark or cold. Are there enough chairs for the entire family to eat at the dinner table?

How can you improve the house?

You can use this information to create a brief, whether you’ve lived in your house for some time or have just bought it. You should consider the flow and size of each room, as well as the areas that are too dark or too cold.

RIBA Chartered Architects Cheshire East & West

How would you describe your perfect home?

If you were to think about your perfect home, the first thing that comes to mind is warmth, brightness, light and lots of happy kids playing. Or maybe a quiet cozy place with a book, accompanied by booze and good company.

You can use any existing information on the home to help you with this step.

You may have copies or permissions for planning, land registration, covenants and easements, etc. Is the property in a Conservation Area?

You can collect information by collecting things you are interested in.

It can be very useful to find similar images on websites such as Pinterest and houzz. They can show specific details or materials. Or they can focus on subjective factors like light and space. Highlighting things you do not like is a great way to help us understand your needs.