When making the investment to build in Barbados, an architect can make a valuable contribution to the design and construction of the property, and despite what you might think, it might be the best decision you could make.
Architects can provide a wide variety of services for the potential home-builder in Barbados, tailored to their needs – from basic consulting to a complete building design, or simply managing the entire project. Choosing the right architect to work with can potentially save you enough money during the building process to at least cover their fees, as their knowledge and experience in construction and building projects can help to avoid potential pitfalls.
They can help you to translate your concept into a well-designed, original and functional Caribbean residence, built to withstand natural disasters, take advantage of local breezes and idyllic views, making it an investment that not only you can appreciate, but one that will increase in value over time.
The best way to find a suitable architect in Barbados is to ask for recommendations, or simply call or visit various listed companies and request a brochure or even a meeting to find out more about their experience and capabilities. Make sure you meet the individual who would be working directly with you and ask questions about their experience, current workload, procedures and fees. When you have one or two choices, let them take you to sites of their previous work on the island and see if you can get references or talk to some of the owners they have worked with before you make your final decision.
Once you have selected an architect, and have both agreed the terms and conditions, payment is usually made in advance of each phase of the project: the design itself, the required building documents, any bidding and negotiations, and finally overseeing the construction.
In order to begin the architect needs to know about your chosen site, lifestyle, future plans, preferences and – most important – the budget; a good architect will know how to research this information and utilise it to create your vision as accurately as possible.
The architect creates the blueprints, detailed drawings of the building including elevations and possible landscaping options along with a list of specifications such as materials, fittings and finishes.
They can also assist you in finding a contractor to manage the day-to-day construction site at which point the architect will – once retained to do so – visit the construction site periodically to ensure work is progressing and on schedule, assist with payments to the contractor and any suppliers, and generally oversee the project.
With the high cost of construction in the Caribbean, many people find it necessary to compromise in their expectations and be forced to find alternative solutions, but the resource of a good architect can help to steer the way.