What is an Architectural Proposal?
An architectural proposal is a document that is drafted for a client in need of architectural services. It’s an essential part of the sales process, and is one of the first points of contact with the client.
Put simply, it’s an architectural designer’s chance to wow prospective clients by highlighting the value of their services.
What to Include in the Architecture Proposal
There are a couple of important sections you should look to include in your architectural proposal. Of course, nothing is set in stone, but below is a good place to start.
This is the very first page of your proposal following the front cover, and the first thing prospective clients will read when considering your services. The cover letter should peak the reader’s interest and convince them to keep reading your proposal.
This is where you inform the reader on what they’ll find enclosed in your architecture proposal. It summarizes all the important points you’ve addressed and sets the prospective client’s expectations for your proposal.
Business proposals tend to include information on the business itself. It’s a chance to communicate your organization’s values and mission, as well as share any business information or connections that are relevant to the architectural project at hand.
Now, this doesn’t need to be an in-depth breakdown of the architectural project and development services required. It’s an overview of what you’re planning to do that demonstrates your understanding of the project and how your architectural services can make it happen.
This stage doesn’t require exact specifications in terms of resources, timings, or construction process, however you can look to include some of the following information:
- Project scope: include details on how you plan to approach the project. You don’t need any drawings or designs here, but it’s important to give prospective clients an idea of any key events and what your project will entail.
- Timeline: a rough idea of how long the process will take is key when it comes to the client’s decision making process. Don’t be too specific. You want to ensure you can deliver the projects on time, and you can’t accurately confirm when you’ll be finished without fully understanding the project scope.
- Milestones: here you’ll communicate how you plan to track progress, and what the prospective client can expect at different stages of the architectural process.
It’s important to be realistic about everything so as to ensure satisfied clients. Making false promises in order to win the project won’t do you any favours down the line.
The size of this section really depends on the size of your architectural firm and number of architects. If you’re a one-person architectural firm and it’s just you providing architectural services, that’s great too. You’ll have more freedom to make it your own.
If you’re a team, you want to provide some background information on the architects involved in the process so as to convince the interested organization of your expertise and credibility. Here’s an idea of what to include:
- Name and photo: to familiarize clients with you and your team
- Role in the organization: so clients can have an idea of who they’ll be working with on what
- Biography: include some information on your team, such as experience, education, and interests
Depending on how your organization is structured, you can make this page really stand out. If it’s just you—this is your chance to shine.
In industries such as architecture, previous work is an essential consideration for the client. Past projects can be turned into case studies for your portfolio and play an important role in creating winning architectural proposals.
Try and find similar projects from past work to really drive home that you’re the best architect for the job.
This is another essential part of any architectural proposal. These aren’t finalized fees or total cost, nor is it a comprehensive pricing breakdown. It’s a general idea of expected costs in order for the client to consider how this works with their budget.
This will be further developed in any formal agreement that parties enter into, but at this stage it’s just a general idea on what the client can expect to pay.
How to Write an Architecture Proposal
Now you know what goes into an architectural proposal, let’s take a look at some tips on pulling it all together.
1. Find out exactly what the client wants
Never lose sight of the fact you’re writing proposals with the intention of convincing a specific person or group that you’re the perfect solution to their architectural wants and needs. It’s in your best interests to understand what it is they’re looking for.
If it’s a dream home you’ll want to provide different information than if it’s an office building. If they’re looking for luxury you’ll need a different approach than if they’re wanting uniformity. Aim to create a proposal that suits the project at hand.
2. Highlight what sets you apart
Prospective clients will receive more than one proposal—this is a competition. Highlight what it is that sets you apart from the rest, and how your proposed plan is their best option.
3. Include a CTA in your proposal templates
You’ve written your proposal with a desired action in mind—you want the prospective clients to reach out and further enquire about your services. Make this easy for them.
Include guidance on next steps and include the relevant information to enable them.
Creating an Architectural Proposals is Simple with Bonsai
If all this seems like a lot of work, there’s a simple and easy alternative available to you. Bonsai’s professional proposal template ensures you build from the ground up when creating your architectural proposal. Here’s how to get started:
- Sign up for free to Bonsai
- Find your required proposal template
- Edit to meet your needs
It’s quick and easy to create proposals using the proposal software, as well as find other related templates for contracts, invoices, and more with Bonsai’s platform. Join 250,000+ freelancers and SMBs by getting started on your proposal templates today.
Architecture Professional Proposal Template FAQs
What should an architectural design proposal include?
These are the key aspects of an architectural proposal:
- Cover page
- Executive summary
- Company overview
- Project summary
- Team members
- Previous clients
- Payment details
The exact sections are up to you, but this is a good place to start.
How long should an architectural design proposal be?
There’s no exact word count, but you want to aim to provide enough detail without being boring. Make sure to include all the necessary info, but make sure you focus on delivering an engaging proposal too. Don’t be afraid to show your personality.