Choosing Your Architect

Architects have a deep understanding of design principles, building regulations and construction techniques. 

Choosing the right architect, one who’s skills and expertise you trust, can elevate the monetary value of your home and enhance your lifestyle.

What Is an Architect

An architect is a highly trained professional who uses creative thinking, highly developed problem solving skills along with finely tuned attention to detail and an in depth understanding of the functionality and buildability of a successful home to make your dream home a reality.


Architects are highly skilled and are required to gain a university degree that is 5-6 years long, depending on the university, and consists of an undergraduate degree followed by a post graduate degree.

An architect is not finished there, in fact they are not yet an architect.  To be called an architect, after a minimum two years practical experience, they must study for and sit a registration exam.

How Do You Know Your Architect Is an Architect

Architect’s working in Victoria must be registered with the Architect’s Registration Board of Victoria, meeting set standards of education, experience, knowledge and continued professional development.  Our Architectural Director Lindsay Douglas is registered with the ARBV (15933), as is our trustee company Douglas Smith Pty Ltd, which trades as Dig Design® (50971).  Lindsay is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects and Dig Design is an A+ Practice Member of the AIA..

Follow this LINK to check your architect’s registration, if they’re not on this list they’re not an architect.

Design Skills + Style

Architecture is a personalised service, a skilled architect will be able to consider and challenge your brief, developing a design direction that will exceed your expectations.

Consider your architect’s style.  Have you seen their past projects?  Do you like what you see?  Be aware that experienced architects can show you more than what’s on their website, so request a meeting and find out if you’re a good fit. 


Architect’s fees are generally calculated in three different ways; percentage fees, fixed fees, hourly rate fees.  At Dig Design® we use a hybrid model for calculating our fees, with the occasional project specific anomaly. 

Our fees are made up of two components, design and documentation then contract administration:

Firstly, for design and documentation, we calculate our fees as a percentage of a construction cost estimate, based on the scale and scope of the proposed work … and then we fix it!

Secondly, at the construction phase if you engage Dig Design® for Contract Administration, we calculate our fee as a percentage of the signed contract price (between you and the builder). 

Follow the icon below to read our more detailed post about how architect’s calculate fees.

Investment in an architect’s fee are a fraction of the cost in any building project and bring a measurable value to a project.

Client Architect Agreement

The Client Architect Agreement is a document which serves to protect both the client and architect by setting out the terms and conditions of service, outlining fees, inclusions, scope of works and responsibilities of both parties, ensuring that everyone is on the same page without ambiguity throughout the project.

Every architect is required to have one in place.

Compatibility + Trust

Beyond all these points, you need to trust your instinct, you’ll spend a lot of time working with your architect, so beyond qualifications and expertise it’s important to choose someone you like.  This intangible feeling of the right fit is almost the most important factor in choosing your architect.  A good architect will design what you are looking for, but an exceptional architect will challenge your ideas, raise the bar and give you more than what you understood was possible.

We understand that choosing your architect is a big decision.  We want you to know that at Dig Design®, when you talk, we listen [carefully] to gain a clear understanding of your needs, aspirations and priorities.  We will be there to guide and support you from start to finish as your partners in the process.

Architects are driven by a passion for good design and when you choose Dig Design® as your architect and interior designer you get years of expertise in delivering custom design solutions with minimal stress.

Find out why people [just like you] choose Dig Design® as their architects and interior designers, click on the icon below.

Do you have a project you’d like to discuss?