Before hiring an architect, you need to know...
What is the cost of an architect? If you have a construction, building, or home renovation project, you are likely asking yourself this question. How do architects calculate their fees? Find out in this article.
- What determines the cost of an architect?
- What is the hourly rate of an architect?
- Issuing a building permit
- Building an extension
- The complete project management
- Expertise, advice, or feasibility
1. What determines the cost of an architect?
Although the profession of architecture is regulated, the rates are decided by the architect. Professionals can establish their fees according to their skills and experience. Also, the more time an architect spends on your project, the higher the fee. The cost of hiring an architect, therefore, depends on the magnitude of the project, its complexity, but also on the size, reputation, and experience of the architect’s firm.
2. What is the hourly rate of an architect?
Unfortunately, there is no exact answer to this question. However, on average, architects charge between £70 and £140 per hour, excluding taxes. To this amount, you must add a VAT rate of up to 20% which may be lower in the case of a renovation project.
3. Issuing a building permit
This process begins with the constitution of a request file for a building permit and ends with the issuance of said permit. In this case, the architect generally pins down a fixed price. The architect determines this amount after studying the characteristics of your project and estimating the number of hours required to complete it.
The price depends on the complexity of the project; your specifications and the regulatory context will determine the exact amount.
4. Building an extension
To obtain planning permission to build an extension to your house, all existing buildings on the site must be accurately represented. If you do not have the plans for your house, an architect can measure your home. However, even if you can provide the plans, you will still need to consult an architect to add an extension to these plans. For this project, you should count on spending between £200 and £800 depending on the total area of your house.
5. The complete project management
In cases that require complete project management, the architect typically intervenes from the design to the delivery of the house and ensures all the follow-up of the work. The architect's fees are generally fixed as a percentage of the cost of the work.
In the case of a construction project, this percentage can range from 8% to 16% of the total cost of the work, depending on the complexity of the project.
This rate can be a little higher for a renovation or an extension. Depending on the nature of the work, these projects sometimes turn out to be more complicated than starting from scratch, although this is not always the case. In the framework of a renovation or an extension, an architect's fees can be set anywhere between 11% and 18% of the overall amount of the work on average.
6. Expertise, advice, or feasibility
Architects may also offer expertise, advice, or feasibility studies that only take a few hours. Here the architects apply an hourly rate to which they add potential travel expenses.
Architects can invoice according to (1) the time spent or (2) their fixed rates.
- If the architect decides to invoice you according to the effective time spent working on the project, the architect will indicate his/her hourly rate, generally between £85 and £170 per hour including tax.
- If the architect decides to invoice you using fixed rates, the architect will estimate the number of hours required for the completion of a project and commit to a fixed price. Even if the architect exceeds the estimated number of hours, he/she will invoice you for the amount agreed upon according to the contract that was signed.