You can`t be edited to include conditions specific to your needs or projects, but they`re great and quick to use if adaptability isn`t a priority. One last advantage: since you control the language and appearance of this document, it is best to adapt it to make it attractive to your customers. It won`t look threatening and your customers will be quicker to sign it. You can even revise any contract to customize each customer personally. A contract is, in simplicity, the communication between the owner and the architect. It puts everything on the table and draws everyone`s attention to the expectations and roles that everyone will play. A contract can be used later to resolve disputes, but if a contract is well done, it will prevent problems from appearing. In cases where your client does not wish to use the Institute`s consulting agreements, another alternative is the Australian Basic Consulate Agreement, AS 4122. That`s why the Institute has developed and published a number of consulting agreements for its architects, such as the Client Architect Agreement 2019, to help them in practice and help them fulfill their professional obligations in order to give a written agreement to clients.
If a client accepts your letter proposal, take the next step with an old-time handshake, a letter of intent, a contract conclusion, a contract prepared by the architect or AIA contract documents. Each of them has offered different legal protections for you, with a handshake that offers no legal protection, and architect-prepared contracts or AIA contract documents that offer complete legal protection. What you use depends on your comfort, but we advise you to avoid a handshake. If close coordination between the owner, architect and contractor is ideal, this contract is usually best suited. Considered one of the most effective contracts, it is still relatively new. Also known as a flat-rate or fixed-price contract, it is the architectural contract in its most basic form. The owner accepts a set price and the amount they pay says the same thing, no matter the bumps along the road. The contractor is responsible for completing the work at the agreed price.
The Institute recommends to the architect and the owner a signed written agreement that at least clearly defines the services to be provided and the costs to be paid. This agreement should be reached before the architect starts working on a project. In some states, the law requires an architect to vote on a written agreement with the client. See NSW, Queensland, SA and Victorian Codes of Conduct Notes. A little formal and stifling, AIA`s contract documents did the job. They contain impartial language – which offers the same protection to all concerned – and comprehensive conditions and documents for each project of all sizes. AIA has contract documents for many types of projects, including conventional, sustainable, small projects, design, program management and more. As they are adapted to each project, they have very broad terms and language. This requires very formal legal language that could intimidate your client.