Architect & Engineer Cost Guides

An architect can translate your individual requirements, dreams and thoughts into the form of a plan. They are sensitive to land conservation, environmental issues and familiar with applicable building codes and zoning regulations. They work for you as your agent and can help you in bid evaluation and selecting a contractor. They can even manage your project for you!
An engineer uses scientific knowledge, mathematics and ingenuity to develop solutions. They design materials, structures and systems while considering the limitations imposed by practicality, safety and costs. Basically, an architect is the designer managing the overall design of a building, with primary emphasis on space planning and appearance. The engineer handles safety and is also responsible for the layout of plumbing and electrical.   Continue Reading
  • Hire a Land Surveyor Costs
    Most homeowners spent between:
    $339 - $670
    Average cost:
    $505
    Low cost:
    $200
     
    High cost:
    $1,000
  • Hire a Structural Engineer Costs
    Most homeowners spent between:
    $322 - $659
    Average cost:
    $488
    Low cost:
    $200
     
    High cost:
    $1,260
  • Hire an Architect Costs
    Most homeowners spent between:
    $2,022 - $8,337
    Average cost:
    $5,158
    Low cost:
    $650
     
    High cost:
    $20,000
When should I hire an architect?
Architects are necessary whenever a home remodeling calls for making an addition, altering room sizes and shapes, or making major changes to the plumbing, electrical or heating systems. Architects will explore a homeowner's lifestyle and use of the house, assess the house's structure, and draw up construction plans that address both the owner's desires and the structure's requirements. Depending on city codes, homeowners may also need to submit plans with an architect's seal before beginning work and retaining a permit. You may also want help with the management of your project.
How much do architects make an hour?
Architects normally charge a percentage of what the total construction cost, which can range anywhere from one to eight percent. You may encounter ones that charge an hourly fee from $85-125. Either way, the architect should be able to save you money during construction. Be sure that you get a very detailed bid that includes what your architect will do for you and how often you can expect to communicate with them.
What should I hire an engineer for?
You will need an engineer when you make changes to the roofing, walls, plumbing, wiring, or foundations of your home. It's also a good idea to call a structural engineer if you feel your home has issues that make it unsafe. Engineers will explore the house and recommend what needs to be done, keeping in mind city building codes and your needs.
Engineer Types
If you are building a home or adding an addition, you may need a structural engineer or a soil engineer. A structural engineer is needed if the load-bearing walls in your home are being modified or removed, changes made to the plumbing or wiring, or if other structural elements are being tampered with. In these types of cases, it is crucial than you employ one in order to ensure your structure is safe.
Soil engineers (also called geotechnical engineers) analyze the soil structure of a proposed building construction site and existing structures for problematic conditions concerning the ground under foundations. They make necessary calculations for designing a structure's foundation and the structure itself. A chimney continually going down, wall cracks, moving buildings - a soil engineer can help alleviate possible problems like this.
How much do engineers charge?
Some structural engineers will charge anywhere from $100-150 per hour for their services with an average amount of $350-500 spent by homeowners and construction managers. Soil engineers cost on average $500-1,000 for testing the ground for any problems. You might consider seeing a local government soil engineer to save some money. Also depending on the project, it might be better to hire a land surveyor.
Your architect will let you know if you need an engineer and may be able to suggest where you can find one. Although engineers cost more than architects, their work is often imperative to the success of the overall project.

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Help others plan and budget for their projects

Syma Kazeminy More than 1 year ago
Our architects in San Francisco charge $200/hour along with 12-16% of the market rate of construction costs ($500-$600 per square foot). Really hard to budget in this area - no one wants to give you real numbers.
Alison Kendall More than 1 year ago
Your hourly rates for architects and engineers are way low for Westside of Los Angeles, where we have complex and changing building and planning codes and high contruction and housing costs.  Architects are $80-200 an hour. Engineers are $150-$300 and hour.  Both often have lower cost associates who work with them on more routine tasks, so the average hourly cost might be lower.
Tina Bergen Russell 12 months ago
This price line is way low for architects in upstate New York as well as the city. We encountered 150-250 per hour.
jay bright 12 months ago
As an architect with 45 years of experience,I charge 125-$200/h for full services-design, bid documents, bid management & construction monitoring.
When worked backwards at the end of a project my fees, if the client is decisive and efficient are about $15% for renovations, historic and additions.  It can easily go to 25% if clients change their minds or insist on using a inexperienced, cheap contractor.
Kathy Pennock More than 1 year ago
I'm having a stairway built from my wrap-around porch to the side yard of my home in Pittsburgh, PA.  Architect cost is $600 for a $2300 project.  While they use an hourly rate of $110-150/hour, they seem to have a minimum per project rate. I'm not sure where you came up with your numbers, but they're quite low for Western PA.
Syma Kazeminy More than 1 year ago
Oh, that's the average price, by the way, not the higher end. Price per square foot was $400 two years ago - and it's still sky-rocketing. 
Robert Jamieson More than 1 year ago
I would say architects are 8-15%.  8% being very little design work.  1%?!
George Turner More than 1 year ago
Your hourly rates are way low for architects here in New York City
carlos borja More than 1 year ago
Thankyou for the help ,your information is of great help for starting any proyect

Terry Love More than 1 year ago
Thanks for the tips..

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