In T&T, building plans for construction approvals can be prepared by a draftsman or an architect, how do I know which one I need?
While most draftsmen are proficient in preparing technical drawings, architects are trained to design buildings. Keep in mind that design isn't all about looks, there's form AND function and let's not even get into building codes. So if you want someone to redraw your existing home, go with a draftsman, but if you plan to renovate your current home, or build a new one, choose an architect... you don't just want drawings, you need a sound plan for your real estate investment.
Are you a Registered Architect (with BOATT - Board of Architects of Trinidad & Tobago), and what does that mean for me as the client?
Yes, I am. That means I have met the educational and professional requirements as well as pass the required exams. So you can rest assured that I am qualified and experienced to give you sound and practical advice. Be careful of people calling themselves architects but aren't registered. Most of those guys are just playing with AutoCAD and your money.
To find out more about Registered Architects and the profession of architect in Trinidad and Tobago, head over to www.boa-tt.org
What do I need before I start my next constuction project?
I can't stress this enough: a realistic construction budget. Construction is usually more expensive than people anticipate, so it pays to plan extensively. If you need financing, get pre-approved from your money lender.
What do you need to start working on a design (renovation or new construction)?
We usually start with a site visit and a conversation. That allows me to get a feel for you and your project. From there, I’ll develop a very short project brief to help determine an estimated cost of construction and my service fees.
I have a pretty good eye for design. I'm pretty creative. Why do I have to pay thousands of dollars for drawings?
Designing isn't just about making something that looks pretty. You're about to make a significant investment into your property and you need a sound strategy to make the most of your space and money. Drawings are the instructions and trust me; you need very clear instructions to keep construction on track. Don't worry, even with an architect, you'll have lots of chances to put your personal touch on your project.
Tell me more about the collaborative Pinterest Boards?
Pinterest is a great place to find inspirations for just about anything. By setting up a secret board for your project, we can share ideas with each other and provide feedback in real time.
How would you describe your design style?
Clean. Modern. Practical. Small space enthusiast. We believe gardens should be edible and windows, like ceiling fans, should be used generously.
Are you a builder/contractor?
Yes and no. You won't catch me mixing concrete on the jobsite, but we can spearhead getting your project built if you want us to. Instead of contractors, we can be your construction concierge.
You seem to focus on residential architecture, do you design commercial spaces?
Yes. In fact a lot of my experience is in commercial and retail spaces, but there's a lot to consider for a commercial project, so we are very selective about the ones we do.
Do you think Trinidad and Tobago has an architectural style?
Absolutely. While we may not fully appreciate it as a refined style, the use of wrought-iron burglar proofing, bright exterior paint colours, masonry construction, with small punched openings and metal roofs are just a few of the things that make up Trinibagonian architecture.