Before starting with a project and dealing with clients, it is important to know and understand what your client exactly needs. Here are five important elements to consider in crunching real numbers to your client’s budget.

1Know the budget limitations.Several clients love to dream. They desire for their dream project to be designed like how they envisioned in their dreams. Dreaming to the point as if sky is the limit. As consultant, it is our responsibility to encourage and allow creativity to flow freely like the Fallingwater of Frank Lloyd Wright.

2Bring clients back to reality.Although we encourage our clients to dream and help unleash their creativity, it is part of our responsibility to ensure that our clients are grounded. To do this, as your client the maximum budget for the project. This we help bring them back to reality. Assess if the budget matches the envisioned design concept.

3Present concepts and design inspirations to help trim down the options.Ideally, it is best to present three design concepts and several design inspirations. If the envisioned design fits the budget, you may proceed. Otherwise, present alternative design options that will match the budget. Always offer solutions and alternatives rather than outright telling your client that his/her design intent is not possible. Approaching it this way will make your client feel more comfortable working with you.

4Remember not to over promise. Setting the right expectations from the start of every project sets the tone and ensures that you and your client/s are aligned. If the budget however is not sufficient for the intended design, do not over promise. Rather, carefully choose the right words to communicate with your client and offer design solutions that will fit their budget. This gesture will be appreciated by your client as this will give them an impression know exactly what you’re doing.

5Select and recommend the best options. Equipped with the knowledge of your client’s maximum budget, recommend the best design solution based on the three concepts. Explain why that concept was chosen for your client’s better understanding and to help him/her make a sound decision. 

Taking these five elements into consideration will help you and your client save time. Furthermore, this will allow you to efficiently work on the project and avoid several design revisions throughout the duration of the project. 

With these five elements in mind, it will be much easier for you to help and lead your client in making their dreams a reality.

Notes About the Writer
Rey John is an Architect, Environmental Planner and Real Estate Professional Managing Lorcatecture Corporation as President and CEO.

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