Fresh Out of College Starting Own Firm?


Hi guys I don't come from a prestigious pedigree and I wanted to be an architect. I really didn't want to spend hundreds of thousands at a non-prestigious state college and be unemployed after graduating.  So I wanted to simply create my own job  and use search engine optimization, web design, extreme networking, social media networking, and extreme hustle to simply win business on my own, without having to work at a prestigious firm to be an architect. My ability to get hired at a prestigious high paying firm is doubtful, so I wanted to go out and pound the pavement and win business. So my question is the following:


1. Do I have to gain experience at another firm to be allowed to legally start my own firm?

2. If so what is the minimum amount of time I have to work at another firm so I can start my own firm?

Apr 18, 13 11:09 pm

check your state, because it depends on what they legally allow. 

Apr 18, 13 11:12 pm

good luck.. hope you don't go grey by the time you get your first project.  Working with a team on a building project can be tough in itself... I can't imagine doing all you've described above yourself xD  Sure you could do it but sometimes you have to ask is your time really worth doing web design, search engine optimization etc?  You might end up being the jack of all trades, master of none :/

Apr 19, 13 1:35 am

Totally depends on what kind of work you're (/will be) doing.

And of course what kind of skills and contacts you already have.

Also your location. 

Apr 19, 13 5:36 am

No offense... but if you have doubts that an office would hire you (for a low wage to work under a more experienced team) what makes you think a client would hire you (at a higher fee to complete a project on your own, with no experience)?  

Apr 19, 13 7:55 am

Did you go to school for architecture? Yeah, I think its possible. But if you can work for another firm for even just a year, you could learn a lot and possibly avoid some mistakes that could be costly lessons on your own dime. What I mean is, you should at least try and be aware of all the things you don't realize you don't know at this point. It's complicated.

Apr 19, 13 12:31 pm

Look at home remodeling companies in your area. Those goons get a metric shit ton of work. If you want to make room additions, kitchen & bath remodels, all you have to do is get a client. In most states you don't need a degree in architecture to be a remodeler. Advertise yourself (not as an architect) and have a gruff charm like contractors do. Tons of work is in remodeling and most of these clients are afraid to hire architects. A degree and a license scares away remodel clients. You can charge as much as architects would provided the market will hold your price point. Get a resale license and then you can really bilk. Don't waste your life under someone's heel by being interned in a firm hierarchy for a decade. Its a trap. All you need is a client. You get a good contractor and a client and you are in business. Or wait a decade drafting in an office for some dog food gravy.           

Apr 19, 13 5:09 pm

why even go to school if you wanted to be a remodeler, work on backsplashes, apply dry walls, do paint jobs? xDD    If you want to win big competitions, build entire houses etc, there is no easy way out.

Apr 19, 13 7:09 pm
Erik Evens (EKE)

About 95% of what I needed to know about being an architect and designing good buildings I learned from working for good architects.

Apr 19, 13 8:07 pm

Find some really good, anti-social nose-to-the-board architect and front for him.

Apr 19, 13 9:35 pm

To have your own Architectural Practice or call yourself an ARCHITECT, you need to be licensed by your State Authority, and for that you need to have a combination of schooling and experience.  I believe 3 years is the min.  I would work for a small Arch. firm for 2-3 yrs to gain good experience before starting my own.

Apr 22, 13 7:11 pm

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