Tip 3 - The Plans

There are basically three ways to get your plans done:

1. Use a builder

Builders often have a series of standard plans, and they can arrange to get your plans drawn. The benefit is that you can form a close relationship between the designer (you) and the builder. This way works best when you have a reasonably good idea of what you want. Remember that by doing this you will be committing to a builder and won't have the benefits of competitive tendering.

2. Use a draftsman or designer

The benefits of using these professionals is that they should be able to draw up your designs if you think you have all the issues pretty well resolved. The downside is that their job begins and ends at the drawing of the plans. We advise that you check that a draftsperson is a member of a professional body and is experienced with the appropriate qualifications– look at their previous work.

3. Use an architect

A good way to bring flair, design skill, and professional guidance to your project from start to finish. All Architect members of the New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA) have both qualifications and experience and are registered and monitored by Act of Parliament. They can take your broader vision and ideas for your project and translate it into a design. Architecturally designed buildings tend to have an increased value but it can also be more expensive exercise to begin with. The NZIA has information about processes and costs.