Does a home office extension require an architect?

The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in most people working from home, often in temporary space in a spare room, bedroom or living room. After the pandemic is over, many people are expected to continue to work from home for at least part of the week, but many want more permanent home office space.

A home extension is ideal for a home office. In the following sections, we’ll explore why consulting an architect is recommended for such a project.

Why not go straight to the builder?

It can be useful to talk to a builder about the likely costs of a home extension, but they will be unable to provide accurate quotes without the detailed drawings and specifications an architect provides. With this information, you can approach several builders for an exact quote.

Choosing between an architect and a professional designer

Some builders have a “design and build” service using their own in-house designers, who may not be qualified architects. They will be able to help with the design and technical drawings, but their services are limited.

A qualified architect has had rigorous professional training and is registered with the Architects Registration Board. The membership records are public, so you can check that an architect is a member. An architect may charge higher fees, but overall, they are better value for money. As well as creating detailed design drawings and specifications, an architect can help with planning permission, and they can make sure that the contract between yourself and the builder is sound.

Some people try to save costs by using an architecture student. While they may be able to help, they do not have the same level of expertise as a qualified architect. Hiring students can also be risky, as they don’t have professional indemnity insurance.

Choosing an architect

After you have realised an architect is the most suitable person to design a home office extension, the next issue is choosing an architect who is right for the project. Visit their website and view building projects that have been completed. If you like what you see, contact them for a meeting. A good architect will be happy to provide references from previous clients.

Ask the architect if they have experience in home extensions, especially for office space. They will probably suggest features that the extension needs. For example, two main features a home office requires is good lighting and access to the internet. It also helps to have natural light, with plenty of windows.

A home office extension could be an extra room added to the house or a loft conversion. Some people convert a garden shed into a home office, but a more permanent structure in the garden is better for long-term remote working. An architect will discuss all home office options and help you find the best solution to fit your budget.

If you intend to spend many hours working in a home office, working with an architect is recommended to create a room you’ll be happy and productive working in.

Posted by Mark
April 28, 2021
Features

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