Architects/ Architectural Designers

(picture displayed ADNZ winner House of the Year up to 250 m2 - Bryce Ardern)


Architectural Designers

  • purely creative aspects of designing your building
  • technical aspects of preparing construction documentation
  • And provide support to you and your contractor during construction.


It is important that you thoroughly discuss the range of service offered to be sure that you will have the right support throughout the whole building process


– and no nasty surprises.

The world of architectural design is incredibly varied and while all architectural designers will be able todemonstrate their experience in some areas, it is important that they are able to competently deliver your unique project.

Looking at relevant examples of their work and talking with client and contractor referees will help you establish the designer’s competencies.

Finally, given that the building project is likely to consume many hours of your time over a number of months, a key element is for you to have an effective professional relationship with your designer.

Finding this fit is perhaps the single most important item.

  • Be comfortable with the way your designer communicates and their alignment with your personal values. Positive relationships lead to positive outcomes.


Price is a small consideration specifically not considered. The value the right designer will add to your project will far exceed any small difference in fee. While it is important to have a clear understanding of your costs, emphasis should be placed on achieving the project budget. Perhaps the matter of architectural fees could help separate the final two designers on your short list!



To be eligible for membership of Architectural Designers New Zealand Inc (ADNZ), members must hold a recognised certificate or diploma, undertake compulsory professional development, and have their skills assessed to ensure they meet the requirements of the ADNZ Competency Standards. They are also bound by the ADNZ Code of Ethics.

ADNZ (Architectural Designers New Zealand Inc.) is the national professional body representing architectural designers. ADNZ members are specialists in building design and construction, undertaking residential and commercial projects at all stages of the construction process. 

In selecting a professional member of ADNZ, you can be confident that you are engaging an architectural designer who will bring professionalism, accountability and integrity to their work. 

For more information and to contact an ADNZ member visit


Registered Architects


In order to register with the New Zealand Registered Architects Board (NZRAB), architects must first graduate from university with a degree in Architecture and,  after some three years’ practical experience in a mentored environment, submit to rigorous registration assessment. 

Registered architects must re-register every five years, and to do so must demonstrate that they have undertaken Continuing Professional Development (CPD).  

Most registered architects are members of the New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA), which actively supports graduate development and CPD, provides a wide range of technical documentation to its members, and promotes excellence in design through award programmes.

For more information on Architects or to find a Registered Architect visit or

Important Information: Not all architects are members of the NZIA, and not all members of the NZIA are architects (architectural students and graduates are encouraged to join). There may be designers who infer that they are an ‘architect’, or call themselves ‘architect’ who do not have the professional standing for this to be valid.

Make sure the designer you employ has professional indemnity insurance that provides cover in case of professional negligence. From November 2007, architectural designers and draftsmen have to be assessed for licensing by the Department of Building and Housing (DBH) as Licensed Building Practitioners (LBP Design) under one of three classes limited by size, complexity and type of buildings undertaken.  Further rules with regard to LBP design of ‘restricted work’ will be introduced in 2010 and 2011.


Written with assistance from the Architectural Designers NZ and New Zealand Institute of Architects