Business Profile: MQD Architecture

Name: Declan Devine
Company: MQD Architecture
Address: The Railway Studio, 240 Melmount Road, Victoria Bridge BT82 9LB
Tel: 07912763251

Can you describe your business?

I run a small Architectural practice providing design and project management services for private one-off bespoke dwellings, extensions and renovations, Housing developments, Community and Leisure projects, Sports Facilities, Commercial buildings and Tourist and Renewable energy projects.

I provide an inhouse service for planning, construction, tendering and project management of your project, I take any project from Initial briefing to project completion. I listen to and discuss your needs, desired outcomes and work with you throughout the entire design and build process.  This service is tailored to suit each of my client’s requirements. 

Why did you start your own business?

Having worked with two other companies since graduating from university I’ve always wanted to run my own business at some stage.  I’ve worked at my own business part-time since 2010, in the last two years I have been able to make it a full-time job for myself.

I have four children, so it is great to be able to manage your own schedule around family life.

Having my own business allows me to explore new products, materials and building concepts, so this business provides a great mix of design flair and technical design, something I love doing and is a core requirement for my job.

What are the best things about running your own business?

There are several…. Flexibility and the ability to work my own hours is a huge advantage with a young family

The satisfaction I get on the completion of a project, the smiling eyes and often tears of happiness of a client when they walk into their finished home, this is something no other business can offer

I also enjoy the challenge of running my business, meeting new clients and helping them make their dreams a reality.

Most of the time I don’t think of my business as work, as I really do enjoy what I am doing daily.

What are the main challenges facing the business?

It’s a challenge dealing with the Local Planning Policies and Building Control Regulations, they are continually evolving, and planning policy is particularly difficult as each local council area can interpret the policy slightly differently.

Building techniques and technologies are also evolving with the Building Control Regulations being altered to meet these demands, keeping up to date with all the innovations within the building industry can involve many hours of research and attendance at CPD events.

It can also be challenging juggling the finances, marketing and admin however my wife does help me with this!

What advice would you give to someone starting a business?

Don’t be afraid to go ahead with something you love doing.  You can always start off something on the side and build it up slowly and get your name out there.  This way you don’t have to take a massive leap by leaving your job.

There is so much help available to get you started and lots of great people willing to help you.

Can you describe your experience of running a business in three words or less?

Busy exciting rewarding