(Although geared to homeowners, these questions can be adapted easily for small commercial projects.)
1. Describe your current home. What do you like about it? What’s missing? What don’t you like?
2. Do you want to change the space you have?
3. Do you want to build a new home?
4. Why do you want to build a house or add to or renovate your current home? Do you need more room? Are children grown and moving on? Is your lifestyle changing?
5. What is your lifestyle? Are you at home a great deal? Do you work at home? Do you entertain often? How much time do you spend in the living areas, bedrooms, kitchen, den or office, utility space, etc.?
6. How much time and energy are you willing to invest to maintain your home?
7. If you are thinking of adding on, what functions/activities will be housed in a new space?
8. What kind of spaces do you need (bedrooms, expanded kitchen, bathrooms, etc.)?
9. How many of those spaces do you think you need?
10. What do you think the addition/renovation/new home should look like?
11. If planning a new home, what do you envision in this home that you don’t have now?
12. How much can you realistically afford to spend?
13. How soon would you like to be settled into your new home or addition? Are there rigid time constraints?
14. If you are contemplating building a home, do you have a site selected?
15. Do you have strong ideas about design styles? What are your design preferences?
16. Which family member will be the primary contact with the architect, contractor, and others involved in designing and building your project? (It is important to have one point of contact to prevent confusion and mixed messages.)
17. What qualities are you looking for in an architect?
18. How much time do you have to be involved in the design and construction process?
19. Do you plan to do any of the construction work yourself?
20. How much disruption in your life can you tolerate to add on to or renovate your home?