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What to do if your architect leaves you high & dry after permitting

Bringing together a great team to see your project to completion comes with a lot of ups, but it can also come with some downs. For example, what are you supposed to do when you receive your building permits, but your architect just shakes your hand and leaves you with your GC? For whatever the reason, losing someone that has intimate knowledge about your construction project suddenly can cost you a lot of time and money. It can also cause you a lot of stress. Here are some tips on what you should do if an architect leaves you high and dry.

Normal architect transitions

When an architect leaves a project, there’s an architectural responsibility that should be followed. Though every project is different, a transition process of some sort should be followed. For example:

Communicating early on

If the architect is intending to leave, they should inform everyone involved  as soon as possible or as early on in the process as they can. This should include the homeowners, the General Contractor, and the owner’s representatives (if there is one). Communicating early on could limit technical debt on the project down the road.

Find a new architect

Once you have your permits, you’re ready to build. But it’s a good idea to ensure that the designs you worked with your architect on – and got approved – are adhered to. While you don’t need a new architect per-say, hiring one to act as your owner’s representative will smooth out the construction process significantly. 

Handling the Transition

Under normal circumstances, the shift from the design phase of a project to the construction phase is a bumpy road. You’re bringing on a General Contractor after spending months working with your architect and they are fresh without the background knowledge of why certain decisions were made in the design phase. 

More often than not, the GC will have questions and not understand why the design has X not Y detail in it. When the architect isn’t there, they’ll ask the homeowner, who (more often than not) will not know why the architect did it that way and have to call the architect who has moved on to a new project and may not be responsive. This could happen a dozen times a week at the outset and slow construction to a standstill. 

Having an architect act as your owner’s representative smooths out the transition, can receive the question from the GC and if they can’t answer it immediately, they can give the question to the homeowner in an easier way to understand so they can make the quick decision and the project can keep moving. 

Debowsky Design Group—your renovation partners

At Debowsky, we understand the financial, physical and emotional stress that can come with renovations, especially when incidences like the above occur. That’s why we’ll never leave you high and dry at any stage of your project. Just take a  look at the great work that we’ve accomplished for Miami residents. If you have any questions about how to bring about your next project, give us a call. Our team of experts is ready to help you from Day 1 to Day Done.