How to choose the right designer
Today we’re going to talk about how to distinguish different types of designers, according to their expertise, their skills, and their knowledge. First of all, there are architects. In Israel, an architect is called an “Adrihal,” a person who has studied at university in Israel or abroad, who has a degree. An architect can design a building from scratch as well as the interior and also handles the interior architecture. There are differences also among architects. Some architects are licensed (qualified) and others who aren’t. A licensed architect in Hebrew is called “adrihal rashui,” who has completed a 3-year internship and has passed an exam. This is fundamental because there are a series of works that require “heter bniya,” that is, the building permit, and not all architects are authorized to sign all types of permits. Therefore it’s important to know when we need a designer who is adrihal rashui and when we can settle for a younger adrihal, who hasn’t yet obtained a license. In Israel, there’s a type of bachelor’s degree that you can get from pan-universities, called mihlalot. Those who graduate from these schools, after two or three years of studies, receive the title of “andessai adrihalut.” The skills of those who have studied for two or three years are obviously different from the skills of those who have studied for five years, and who have a degree. Also regarding the permit signatures, an andessai adrihalut cannot sign everything that an architect is authorized to sign. Therefore, this should also be taken into consideration when choosing the right designer/architect.
We also have a huge number of interior decorators, and this is where things start to get complicated. There are some highly qualified and high-level schools, where one studies every day for two or three years and gets an associate’s degree. But there’s an infinite number of schools where one can obtain the title of “meazev pnim” (interior designer) after studying for one night a week for only one year. The market gets filled with these people who unfortunately aren’t enough qualified. Very often, desperate people who decided do work with an interior designer come knocking on my door, so that I can rescue them.
Regarding what I have said so far, it’s all fundamental to be able to evaluate the person we are dealing with, being able to evaluate the cost estimate and to figure out if the amount asked for is fair or not, and obviously to assess the level of professionalism. In the next article, we’ll speak about how to read a cost estimate and what an architect’s cost estimate should include for it to be complete, reliable and to provide us with an excellent house and design eventually.
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