Just add water: architecture startups!

All in the Family?
February 27, 2013, 5:22 pm
Filed under: Startup

All-In-The-Family-tvSomeone once advised me that you really shouldn’t do business with friends (and family).  That in the event something goes awry, it could be the end of a  beautiful friendship.  Nevermind the impact and entanglements on your other friends and family.  One friend likened his break up with his professional partner/friend as a bitter divorce with a nasty alimony that seemingly never ended.  *wince*

That all makes sense, but when you’re starting out– the easiest PR (and client base) is your own network of friends and family. In the last year, I took on a few projects for friends and family, which so far has been a good thing.  Just wondering if you’ve taken on work with friends and family?  Or have you collaborated with friends or family?  Will you take on more work within your own social/familial network?  Any thoughts?


Uncle Sam
February 14, 2013, 12:59 am
Filed under: Startup

Tax time rolls around and I’m pulling out all the random wadded up receipts (along with my hair)… trying to make sense of what we’ve billed, expenses…financial reconciling time!  (Fingers crossed that I’m not just a non-profit for rich people!)

Advice that I’ve been given before is to keep track of everything and talk to your accountant about what you can/cannot deduct. Doesn’t hurt to try for everything!    Some of these things include:

+Rent of your workspace — whether its just your den in your home or a proper rented space.

+Utility bills – electric, phone, internet, car for site visits

+Lunch, dinner, drink meetings with clients and consultants

+Health insurance

+Medical bills that exceed 3.5% of your income can actually be deducted

+Last year’s accountant’s bill to do your taxes

+Travel expenses — subway cards? rental cars? gas for site visits/meetings?



Do you guys have any other goodies that you’ve deducted? Or other tricks to make tax time less painful? Are you paying quarterly taxes or just a lumpsum?


Street Cred
February 11, 2013, 4:33 pm
Filed under: Startup

Most of my professional career so far has been under the umbrella of someone else’s office.   Regardless of my role in a project, ultimately the person who gets credit- whether its awards, publications or client referrals – is the head honcho. That’s fine- She paid the liability insurance and my salary… But now my portfolio is primarily attributed to an office that’s not mine.

There’s a wealth of experience (and scars!) that we’ve all gained from our old offices, but the work itself isn’t ours.  Just wondering how you’re marketing the work that you’ve done in the past?