Development: Maximising Your Profits

By Dion Seminara, Dion Seminara Architecture

Property development and architecture might seem unlikely bedfellows, but there are times and particular investments when the two fit together like a hand in a glove.

To fully understand the benefits of architectural design in property development, we first need to understand that there are varying kinds of property developments.

The hard core property developer looking to make a quick dollar on refurbishing units may not see a need for using an architect to design their plans. Their idea is to keep costs down and turn property over quickly. However even in these situations there are times where high quality designs will actually make them more money by adding further value to the property when it sells.

But not all developments are the fix it and flick it' kind. Individuals who are starting out in the property development game can certainly benefit from the input of an experienced and highly skilled architect, particularly if they are renovating a home with a view to selling it at higher than average prices.

It is in fact common in places like the UK and US for property developers to automatically call in an architect the moment they take ownership of a property. These more mature markets understand the value that great designs add to the development as a whole.

But it's not only the visual and liveability benefits of a great design that make property and architecture such a great mix, there can also be significant cost saving benefits as well.

Now it might seem strange to say that using an architect will actually save you money; it's not like it's a secret that architects charge more than drafts people. But a highly experienced architect, particularly one that is a licensed builder themselves, can often save you money by advising on cost saving measures that give you a great outcome, without blowing your budget.

Understanding how to achieve a certain look with cheaper materials is a great example of this. But more than that, an architect can also advise you on how to maximise the selling features of a property.

Having a wow factor is important in getting high offers and getting them quickly. In the property development game it's all about selling fast once the renovation is complete. Poor designs lead to fewer offers, which often means that the property stays on the market longer.

Taking time to sell can be fatal to any property development as interest on borrowings can quickly cut into any potential profits, resulting in the property being let go at well under the intended sale price.

An experience architect will be able to show you how to get the most out of your investment property with the lowest outlay. Furthermore, an experienced architect will also have a very good idea on the type of buyer the property will appeal to, and the features those buyers will consider to be the most important.

For example, if the property would ideally appeal to a young family, having suitable areas for the children to play will be important. But what is just as important is that those playing areas are able to be supervised from the kitchen, so the parents can keep an eye on their children while they prepare meals. An architect can advise you on the most cost effective way to achieve this.

A good architect will have a wealth of experience, not only in architectural design, but also in building to a budget, and will know how to create key selling features on a budget.

So if you're looking to get into property development and want to create a home that will sell quickly for your asking price, make sure you consult a skilled architect.