How to get my dream house – Use an Architect

How to get my dream house – Use an Architect

Tips and Advice, Services
 “So do you draw pictures of houses all day!?” is a question that most architects are painfully familiar with. I say ‘painfully’ because this mental image of our profession means that many people who can really benefit from our services never consider appointing an architect because they are unaware of the benefits that having a professional on board can bring. So what are these benefits and how do I respond when someone asks if I draw pictures all day? One of the best answers that I can give is that as an architect I am a: big picture, creative, problem solver.

Let us take a quick look at the elements listed above to see how an architect can help you to move from dream to reality:

Big picture: One of the most common complaints about building projects is that things can be so terribly disjointed. Each stakeholder, contractor, builder etc. is ‘king of his own patch’ with no true understanding of the wider scope of a project. Another way in which the big picture is missed is that homes are often plunked down in places without proper regard for environmental conditions or the personal needs of future occupants. A professional architect will help you to rise above this muddle by taking a truly integrated view of the entire project. Careful consideration will be given to the specific needs of your family, the local natural and built environment, legal requirements, the local climate and the cost implications of decisions.

Having someone on your team who can constantly keep the end-goal (e.g. a welcoming, suitable and comfortable home for your family) in mind will keep you from getting so bogged down in particulars, which you feel unable to deal with, that the project turns from joy to nightmare. It is obviously not the case that the details are unimportant, they are! The fact is, however, that an architect is uniquely placed to form (and communicate!) a coherent image of these details so that they can be managed to your best advantage.

Creative: One of the greatest obstacles towards home designs that provide welcoming and homely spaces is the deep desire to ‘do things as they have always been done’! The result is the kind of cookie-cutter homes that dot the landscape and that make no concession to individual needs or local conditions. Architects can help you to avoid this pitfall by taking a creative look at your needs and designing your home accordingly. Creativity in architecture finds many expressions and here are some that you can benefit from:

  • Applying insights into the latest styles and trends creatively within your specific context
  • Thinking through ways in which your home can be energy efficient and sustainable
  • Exploring cost-effective avenues to achieve certain effects and results
  • Thinking ‘outside the box’ in terms of the use of space and positioning
  • Designing a home that reflects your unique personality, range of activities and needs.
Problem Solver: There is no question about it: building projects are complex! So complex in fact that they can bring some people close to a nervous breakdown. Having an architect on your team will not take away the complexity. It will, however, place most of it in the hands of a professional who has been ‘around the block’ a few times and who can help you to solve even some of the most daunting problems as you progress towards your new home. Here are just some of the ways in which architects can act as problem solvers:
  • Preventing budget blow-outs through the application of time-tested techniques of economic and efficient design
  • Providing you with independent advice on costing
  • Dealing effectively with stakeholders including local authorities, regulatory bodies and builders
  • Providing effective monitoring and quality control throughout the building project.
I think you will agree that the picture painted above is a world away from ‘drawing pictures every day’ (although we do that too!). It should also cause you to ask a simple question: “Can I afford not to have a big-picture, creative problem solver on my team?”  We would respectfully suggest that you can’t!
This is why we are proud to offer exactly this kind of service at Brisbane based dion seminara architecture. Please contact us today to see how we can help to turn your dream into reality.
Dion Seminara Architect


Hi, I am Dion Seminara, practicing architect and licensed general builder for 20 years as well as an environmental sustainable design (ESD) expert. I graduated from Queensland University of Technology (QUT) with honours, QLD in 1989. Registered as an architect in 1991 and registered as a builder in 1992, I am also a fellow member of the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA). Having received 12 ArCHdes Residential Architecture Awards, LJ Hooker Flood Free Home Design Award and the 2016 AIA Regional Commendation for Public Architecture, my expertise with both residential renovation (to all types of houses, especially Queenslanders, 50s/60s/80s), new contemporary homes and luxury residences has earned me a reputation as one of Brisbane's architectural specialists in lifestyle design architecture, interior design and landscape design.