California is home to numerous ingeniously designed homes and buildings, and many of these buildings come from the work of a licensed architect.
From the Golden Gate Bridge to Dodger Stadium, designing any structure is a complicated process, one that requires a great deal of skill, education, and direct experience, which is why a licensed architect is a person best suited for this job.
Even after achieving a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree, an aspiring architect must endure thousands of hours of on-the-job training before he or she can become a licensed architect. California mainly requires nearly 2000 hours of training outside of the classroom before a license is issued, in addition to several grueling exams.
Why Hire a Licensed Architect?
A licensed architect California and most places throughout the U.S. have completed a process that (in some cases) can take up to ten years. This not only shows determination and a strong focus, but it shows commitment and gives a sense of trust that a project will be carefully considered and brought to life most professionally.
A licensed architect comes with experience obtained through on-the-job training and from studying under professional, established architects. This type of experience isn’t typically found with architects that have just completed school and are looking for their first big job.
Bottom line, with a licensed Californian architect, you’ll avoid critical mistakes that could result in lower property value or even design flaws that could render your project unsafe.
Benefits of Licensing
Not only do architects with a license here in California have a higher degree of experience, but they also have direct knowledge of federal guidelines. They are familiar, particularly with California’s state and local guidelines regarding building codes, permits, and fees associated with certain types of building projects.
Licensed architects in California are trained to identify and implement design solutions that meet the requirements of the client’s needs alongside any regulations governing the region where the project is being considered.
An architect without a license may offer exciting ideas, but only a licensed architect can be trusted to execute those ideas with intimate and direct knowledge.
How to Identify a Licensed Architect
In the United States, only people who are licensed, registered architects (RA) are legally allowed to call themselves architects. Other people trained in architecture and design may have the educational requirements met, but they still must refer to themselves as “junior” or “unlicensed architect” by law. If you’re unsure if someone is genuinely a licensed architect, California has a State Architects Board where all RAs are documented that you can contact or search to look for a listed name.
Additionally, you can perform a search through the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards to find out if the person you’re considering hiring is genuinely a licensed, registered architect.
Getting the Stamp
A licensed architect also can stamp documents, plans, and the like. If an architect stamps a document, it ensures a licensed architect has produced an item.
These stamps are recognized by all California local agencies such as any municipal California Departments of Building or Community Development. The document stamped is then considered a legal document, and the person attached to the stamp is the “Architect of Record.”
Going Ahead with Planning
Once you’ve verified that the architect is licensed in California, you may rest easy in giving him or her your trust that your project will be designed professionally, and with experience.
Remember, with just a little research, you’ll be able to verify licensure quickly.