How to start an architect firm

As in any business enterprise, the start up capital is crucial for initiating or setting up an architectural firm. Two kinds of expenses are to be met. One is the initial expense and the other is cash for funding operations until sufficient cash flow. Though an exact nature of capital which is necessary is unknown, cash enough to cover three to six months of operational costs must be available.

The organizational needs are office space, acquisition, computer equipments, soft ware, furniture, printed material, marketing materials, brochures and other office supplies. Expenses for benefits, salaries, rent, insurance, travel, copies, telephone, shipping and others are also to be met. Including an emergency contingency fund will be an added advantage.

Professional services needed in setting up an architectural firm

An architectural firm needs a banker, a lawyer, an accountant and a tax advisor as well. You may want to be the sole proprietor or work in partnership but during both times your firm needs some assistants. Bankers are good members of our community and developing a good relationship with them is a prudent choice. You may need the advice of a management consultant to solve any underlying issues related to operation of your business.

Practice of ethics in your architectural firm

It is very important to set up your architectural firm on the highest of ethical principles. You can become a member of the AIA’s code of ethic and professional conduct for any guidance. Your contacts and old relationship with your former employer can provide you with support, references and sometimes referrals. You can cite examples to your clients about the projects that you participated in your former employment. Never burn bridges as you may have to cross them again.

As a creative architect who wants to translate your venture of setting up an architectural firm that is successful, you will need not just your design skills, communication skills, social skill but also a keen business sense. You can try reducing your operational costs and there are plenty of ways to do it.

 Your client care is very important for your business and should be not just a business interaction but part of a project delivery. Remember that your architectural firm’s behavior contributes as a marketing tool for future work.