There are a few different kinds of professionals that you can work with when you’re remodeling your kitchen. Contractors, usually either general contractors or renovation specialists, are necessary for the build process. But what about your new design? Architects and designers can help with this—though sometimes it isn’t always clear which type of professional you should choose.
Which is Right For Your Remodel?
Let’s start by understanding the differences between architects and designers. Designers are typically hired for aesthetic upgrades. They can help with color and material selection, and they have the knowledge to pull an interior design together. Some designers are also able to help your architect with larger remodels that may involve moving walls or adding square footage. However, interior designers typically operate in a somewhat different area with experience in the aesthetic aspects of design rather than the structural and architectural elements.
An architecture firm, on the other hand, is capable of a lot more in terms of structural changes. For example, if you want to enlarge your kitchen by moving walls—even exterior walls—an architect can draft structurally sound plans to help you do this. Architects also have experience with local building codes where a designer does not.
This means that if you plan to rearrange key fixtures, like your lighting system, the location of your stove, or plumbing, an architect will be your best bet to make sure everything flows and is up to code.
Another key part of an architect’s training is design theory. With knowledge in design theory, architects are capable of putting together a kitchen design that not only suits the floor plan you have in mind, but also has an efficient traffic design that makes navigating your kitchen easier.
Should You Choose an Architect or Designer?
The choice comes down to the scope of your kitchen remodel. If your renovation will be a big one including structural changes or moving key elements like plumbing and electrical, then look for an architecture firm that has the expertise you need to make these changes. An architect can also help you with things like securing permits and helping recommend a builder to complete the work, which is an added advantage.
If, however, you simply want to update your kitchen aesthetically, then a designer may be the better option. These professionals are typically well versed in colors, materials, textures and know what works well together. Plus, they may even be able to help you source the materials, which can save you time and money.
What if I Want Both?
Your kitchen remodel may need both an architect and a designer. This is the best of both worlds, giving you access to expertise in structural design as well as a professional with an eye for style. Drafting Cafe Architects has professionals in both areas, as well as architectural and interior design packages to help you make the most of your renovation.
We even offer our Design-to-Build package that provides both an architect and a designer, plus recommendations for established local contractors, plus a personal project manager that visits the jobsite regularly and keeps you informed.
Ready to get an estimate for your kitchen remodel? Drafting Cafe Architects offers a free online instant estimate tool! Just answer a few questions about your project—which you can do in less than a minute—and we’ll send you budget information free of cost.