Long Beach, California has many rules and regulations when it comes to what you can do with your residential or commercial space. If you want to build a new structure or remodel the one you have, you’ll have to do it according to code. You may be of the opinion that you should be able to do whatever you want on your own property, but city officials will not agree. It’s important, therefore, to have an experienced Long Beach, CA architect on your team to help you design your space so it meets all local codes.
How do you go about choosing the right Long Beach, CA architect?
It might sound obvious, but one of the first things you should look for is an architect who has a good amount of experience working in the city of Long Beach. Whether city officials want to admit it or not, a good amount of the building code is open to interpretation. An architect who has successfully got plans through the approval process in the city many times will know what plan checkers are looking for (and what they don’t seem to care much about). They will know how to draw up plans that meet the city planning department’s expectations, and will therefore be likely to have to go through several rounds of revisions before your building’s plans finally get approved.
As you start interviewing architects in the area, ask them how many projects they got through the City of Long Beach’s approval process in the last year, and approximately how long the process tends to take in their experience.
You will also want to ensure that the Long Beach architect you hire has experience with projects like yours. Some architects only work on residential projects. Others specialize in large commercial projects, and still others focus on tenant improvement projects. Check the architect’s online portfolio to get a sense of the types of spaces they design most often to see if they would be a good fit for a project like yours.
After narrowing down your search to a few Long Beach, CA architects that complete projects like yours, you should schedule some initial consultations. At the consultation, you can tell them about your project, but what you really want to do is find out how well you can communicate with the architect. Do they listen to you and your concerns. Do they answer your questions clearly and thoughtfully? You should not feel rushed into signing a contract. Instead, the architect should make you feel comfortable that they are the right firm for your project and will take good care of you throughout the process.
After gathering a few quotes from various architects in Long Beach, make sure you carefully compare them. Some architects will offer services such as handling the approval process and overseeing construction, while others will only offer design services. If you have questions about what a quote includes, be sure to ask! The last thing you want is to get a surprise bill at the end of the process!