When starting any major design project, it’s beneficial to have it properly documented. Being upfront about your design needs will save you precious time, money and make the whole process move more smoothly.

Here are early stage questions your architect should be asking a client before any designing happens.

  1. What kind of accessory dwelling unit are you thinking about? (garage conversion, basement conversion, stand-alone unit, etc.)
  2. What is your address? (This will allow them to pull up site plans or look at Google maps)
  3. Who will use this space? (kids, elderly, tenants, etc.).
  4. What is your 5-year, 10-year and long-term plan for this space?
  5. What is the daily routine for the new space? What activities do you see yourself doing routinely?
  6. How much time do you spend in the different areas of your home (indoors and outdoors)?
  7. What is your lifestyle? Are you at home a great deal? Do you work at home?
  8. Do you entertain often? Describe the backyard. Will any trees need to be removed?
  9. How concerned are you about privacy?
  10. Is there anyone in the family with a disability or who has mobility problems? (think long-term as well)
  11. Do you have any sustainability goals for the project?
  12. Are there any views on the site that are particularly important to you?
  13. What kind of ideas do you have for design or materials?
  14. Do you have any images from magazines or Pinterest that show us a style that you like?
  15. Are there any particular design features that are important to you?
  16. What style of architecture do you prefer? (Check out Maxable’s free lookbook for ideas)
  17. What kind of kitchen do you like?
  18. How many bedrooms do you want?
  19. How many bathrooms do you want?
  20. What kind of spaces are most important to you? (Bedrooms, kitchen, family room, bathrooms, etc.?)
  21. What storage needs do you have? (Bicycles, vacuum cleaners, camping gear etc.)
  22. Do you want a loft or second floor?
  23. Do you have any landscaping requirements?
  24. What are the time constraints of the project?
  25. What is your budget for the project?

Hint: If your architect isn’t asking you these questions, it might be prudent to keep looking around for an architect that is.

Maxable makes planning, hiring, and building your accessory dwelling unit simple

Still need help figuring out where to start? Whether you’re still exploring options or you’re ready to hit the ground running, our team is here to help. We’ll connect you to the best local designers and builders for your ADU project. Book a call with us to get started!

24 Questions an Architect Should Ask You