Choosing a designer for your build

We understand that for most New Zealanders designing and building is a big deal. One of the very first steps, and one of the most important decisions you must make, is choosing the right design professional. But with thousands of residential and commercial designers working in the industry – how do you choose the right one for your project?

Finding your architectural professional

Narrow down your choices through our Find a Designer search option. You can sort by the region you live in and by the type of work you want the designer to undertake. You can also search by keyword if you're looking for something specialised. All designers listed in 'Find a Designer' are professional members of Architectural Designers New Zealand. Check out their designer profiles to find out more about their design philosophy, their practice and if their style and aesthetic is what you're looking for.

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Should I use an architect or architectural designer?

Architectural Designers New Zealand represents both registered Architects and qualified Architectural Designers. All professional members of ADNZ must be able to demonstrate a high level of competency and experience and abide by our code of ethics. They are all skills-assessed and must keep up to date with regular Continued Professional Development to maintain their membership. Choosing an architect or architectural designer comes down to preference and budget.

Briefing your designer

Once you've narrowed down your search to a few designers, you'll need to put together a brief so you can approach each practitioner to find out more about them, their availability, and cost.

A brief is also a good opportunity for you to put down on paper what you hope to achieve from your project. A good place to start is to work through the following questions...

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Meeting your designer

Every architect or architectural designer will have a different approach to the first meet and greet. Take a look at their website or make contact to find out more about their process.

They may want to catch up for a coffee, send you more information on their business, meet you on site, or have a phone/skype chat to answer any questions you might have.

Take the opportunity to ask questions and get to know your designer. It's important to try and discover if you're going to work well together from the start.

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Setting up the agreement to design your home

Once you've made the decision on the designer you want to work with, like any agreement, you need a contract to protect you and your designer. Ask for a copy of your designer’s terms and conditions and make sure they provide you with a legally written contract that clarifies price, timelines and what happens with certain eventualities. If you do not understand anything in the contract or want clarification – ask your lawyer.

Find your architectural designer

So what're you waiting for? Find your designer today.

Find a Designer