Use a registered architect

Let me explain how a person becomes a licensed architect. We attend a university or college and receive a B Arch, (5 year program) or an M Arch (equal to 6 years of architectural education). After we graduate, we meet extensive requirements as an intern and ultimately take the exams. Exams require a tremendous amount of studying and commitment and equal approximately 2-3 days’ worth of time to pass. It is grueling and an impressive achievement. Once exams are passed, as “registered” architects, we must continue to uphold our license responsibilities by taking a minimum of 21 hours per year of continuing education. As licensed architects, we are also licensed interior designers, require expensive insurance and have earned the honor of calling ourselves architects, which only a licensed architect may use next to his or her name. Residential projects do not require licensed architects. All commercial architecture requires the design and associated work to be completed by a licensed architect. It is illegal for a non-licensed architect to practice commercial architecture. Don’t be fooled or convinced by low fees or other reasons to hire a non-licensed architect. Non-licensed architects sometimes hire licensed architects to stamp their drawings. This is unethical. Ask questions and make sure they have a license. It will only benefit the owner and other licensed architects in our industry.