When considering your options for building a new home, make sure working with an architect is one of them. In Ontario, a building under 3 stories does not require an architect’s stamp. That means you can download your own house plans off the internet or hire a draftsperson to draw them up for you. Both of these seem so incredibly inadequate to me after working with them on our house.
There is a bit of a stigma surrounding architects: they either cost too much or the build ends up costing too much because there's a disconnect between the design (architects) and the build (contractors). Do your due diligence and neither will be the case. Whether its a basement reno or a new build, consider talking to an architect. Doesn't cost anything to ask and, if they're any good, they'll help you define a beautiful space you never knew you wanted and couldn't imagine living without.
Choose the right architect and the money spent on their services will more than balance out the value and enjoyment you will get out of your house. Don’t be put off by the copious amounts of black in their wardrobes. These fine professionals are incredibly smart and generally under appreciated. They will get to know you and how you live intimately. They’ll practically become family, or in my case, will be family.
Grant over at PNP wrote a post on this very topic (architects, not fashion). Have a read.