Appointing an architect to get planning permission seems like a fantastic idea, and achieving that is everyone’s dream when it comes to home renovation or retail refurbishment projects, with both the client and architect equally anticipating a successful result.
However nowadays, planning policies have become more and more intricate making it more and more complicated to get approval from councils.
Marketing tactics of some cunning architectural designers and planning consultants consist of unrealistic statements which lure landlords into purchasing their ‘fantastic’ services.
Now, while we all dread the huge 7 letters which make up the word REFUSAL on the decision notice, it allows so-called professionals to easily trigger that fear, leaving most homeowners and businesses heartbroken with money, time, effort and energy gone to waste.
Fear no more fellow readers!
In this blog post I have accumulated 3 major tactics used, so you can be prepared when faced with ‘professional’ treachery.
Although the statement above may sound extremely appealing and promising, claims as such only formulate false hope and unfortunately the only thing it guarantees is unprofessional service providers.
Let’s just imagine what the world would be like if the guarantee of a planning permission existed. All the developers will get away with all types of excessive projects which may include diminishing your local pub, your favourite boutique, shopping centre or that beautiful view outside your lounge window. Policies may be a nightmare, however, at the end of the day they are there to protect our amenities.
Each project differs from one another and so do the case officers who assess the application along with competence of your service providers. So it is wise to accept that the close bond of this trio which determines the likelihood of approval. It is not exclusively based on the ability of the architect or planning consultant who states that they can guarantee it.
Unfortunately, having a certain relationship with a planning officer offers no assurance of planning permission. Any architecture firm that makes this claim is simply lying to you. What helps an architect to get planning permission is putting the effort in to study of the context and other projects in the local area and apply this contextual knowledge to the project they’re working on. Hard work, extensive knowledge and experience are what gets you planning permission, not mates in high places.
Councils (Local Planning Authorities) are extremely neutral whilst giving their decisions and knowing anyone within the institution will not change the possibilities of approval of your project proposal.
This type of service is a high risk, especially for the developer. It means that at least 8 weeks of your time (plus the time for the planning drawings and documentation to be prepared) could be at stake for you, with every chance of it being wasted.
I believe that the offering of no win-no fee expresses an unsuccessful firm’s desperation for custom. Once you come across an offer like this, the questions you need to ask yourself are:
Imagine yourself as a retail owner…
… you lend your finest products to customers in which they will use for up to 2 months, if satisfied they will pay for it, if not they return it. So, in this scenario either of the outcomes are reasonable for both parties.
Now, we all know that you can’t physically return a bunch of drawings to the architect as they will have no value so what’s the catch? There are two outcomes. Their ‘product’ (or services) is below average and is less likely to achieve anything OR the price will be increased beyond a sensible range.
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Again, not all professional are the same. Choosing the right one can ensure the success of your project, but getting it wrong can be expensive, stressful and time consuming!
If you have any questions about how to choose an architect to get planning permission, or if you are interested in bringing your project to life with Urbanist Architecture, click here and send me an e-mail. I’ll make my best efforts to respond to all messages in a timely fashion.