Lessons Learnt

This information is intended to assist architects to NOT be the subject of complaints.

From the complaints received, the following often applies:

  • Generally, complaints relate to residential projects with home-owner clients.
  • When residential projects founder it's usually because of poor budget control.
  • Sloppy communications with clients is often central to the problem.
  • Loss of control of the project is worst in relation to money matters, setting budgets, and obtaining cost estimates at the various design stages of the work.
  • Not getting independent estimating advice is a common failing.
  • Often conditions of engagement and fee-setting are not formalised and changes in scope aren’t documented.

Cautionary Notes
Where the NZRAB becomes aware of ethical or other issues of concern, cautionary notes are issued to assist architects avoid being the subject of a complaint, as below.

Cautionary Note 1: Unethical Behaviour

Cautionary Note 2: Ethical Marketing

Cautionary Note 3: Confidentiality Agreements

Cautionary Note 4: Terms of Appointment

Cautionary Note 5: Service Ethic

Cautionary Note 6: Providing Professional Services

Cautionary Note 7: Ethics and Honesty

(Note: Cautionary Note No 8 has been withdrawn)

Cautionary Note 9: Avoiding Inducements

Additional information for architects is also available.

Disciplinary Decisions
A listing of the NZRAB Board's disciplinary decisions can be accessed here.

Information for the public
When members of the public contact the NZRAB with concerns about an architect's performance, if appropriate they are provided with additional information also.