Vicki Telford Architects, VTA Vicki Telford Architects, VTA
The Role of the Architect
:: WHY USE AN ARCHITECT?
:: HOW TO SELECT AN ARCHITECT
:: THE STEPS OF USUAL SERVICES
:: FEES AND CONTRACTS
:: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Fees and contracts can vary greatly from architect to architect. Architects may arrive at a cost for their fees based on an hourly rate, a percentage of construction cost, a lump sum total, dollars per square foot, or size of job. In Barbados, the Barbados Institute of Architects has a recommended fee scale, available to the public, based on the final percentage of the total construction cost.

Vicki Telford Architects is more than happy to send persons requiring an architect or project manager a proposal based on an initial discussion of the person's requirements for their project. VTA will confirm the fees in the proposal. We work on the final percentage of construction cost for architectural services, unless otherwise agreed upon. We sometimes agree to negotiate a limit on the total amount of our fees for basic services, based on construction cost.

When comparing architects, it is important to know what their estimate of fees includes. Services can vary greatly, and it's important to know what you are going to get. Asking to see actual drawing sets, projects under construction, and completed projects will give you an idea of the level of detail and design refinement that an architect includes in their drawings and specifications.

A typical complete set of construction documents from our office will include all the information a contractor will need to accurately price and construct the project. It will include a site plan, floor plans, lighting plans, interior and exterior elevations, building sections, interior and exterior details, and complete specifications. More complex projects may include additional drawings as necessary to clearly communicate design intent.

Once you have selected an architect, you'll want to clearly outline the services to be provided in a contract. Some architects will use the Barbados Institute of Architects (BIA) Standard Owner/Architect contract; others will use their own contract or a letter of agreement. At VTA we use our Standard Conditions along with a proposal. Our proposal will establish any nonstandard conditions and the particular details of your project. We believe our agreement is a little more detailed and user friendly and establishes a clear understanding between our client and ourselves.

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