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Plan Set Fee


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#1 Steve and Carla Farnam

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Posted 01 May 2021 - 07:21 AM

Good Morning,  After some discussion regarding design fees, with some indicating our fees are a little high and some indicating the fees are low, I am curious what others may consider approximate fair fee for a set of working drawings from full design to plan set including exterior colored renderings, topographic site plan etc. to present for design review. Design is for main house plus outbuilding. Design square footage's as follows;

 

* Outbuilding 960 Square Feet

* Main Floor 3,291 Square Feet

*Basement 643 Square Feet ( Balance of House on Crawl Space )

* Garage/Shop 1,975 Square Feet

* Covered Porches 674 Square Feet

 

Total Square Feet under roof; 7,543



#2 Keith Almond

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Posted 01 May 2021 - 07:36 AM

We would probably be charging about C$9000 for Building Permit drawings. We don't generally prepare full construction details.


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#3 Sam Morgan

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Posted 01 May 2021 - 08:03 AM

I'd be at least 10k for a project like that



#4 Gary Wicklund

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Posted 01 May 2021 - 08:05 AM

I'd be at least 10k for a project like that

Me too, 1$/ft plus hourly for renderings and seismic brace wall plan if required 



#5 Harlon Suttle

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Posted 01 May 2021 - 03:07 PM

On a comarision with commercial projects, Architecrs including the consultant charge from 3.5% of the total project cost and up depending on the complexity...therefore your project is 7453 SF but the complexity and risk is not as extreme, a 0.5% of the projects total cost....for example purposes only 7453 x $300 per SF = $2,262,900 therefore your fee would not be outa line at $11,300....and since your are on the hook for liability issues forever, the future worth cost anaylsis for the ERRORS & OMISSIONS Insurance should also be factored into the pricing structure....You would be surprised at how many owners NEVER consider YOUR LIABILITY for the design.
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#6 Steve and Carla Farnam

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Posted 04 May 2021 - 09:13 AM

Responses appreciated. Design fees are all in line with expected in our area . Architect fee of 3.5% may apply to commercial, which we have not felt the need to pursue, but residential base Architect fee is 10% with percentage additions to a moving adjusted fee of 18% of total project.

Current projects ranging from $250/Sq.Ft. to $1,000.00/Sq.Ft. Fee for above project in the mid $12,000.00 range included renderings for design review and topographic site design for 6.5 acre lot.



#7 Jeremy Stover

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Posted 05 May 2021 - 08:08 AM

Personally, I'd like to see the end product for that kind of fee before I could justify saying whether or not it's worth what everyone's saying it is.  I work for builders, designers, and clients in several and in every one of them this fee structure would be absurdity and I'd be looking for a new job almost immediately.  

 

I think value is a big proponent of the discussion here, and if that's what the value is to your specific clients then that's great.  I also think the area in which you live helps to dictate what that value looks like.  That said, I do think that's way too much money for a set of plans (unless you're going full-on architect, and doing a 30 page residential plan set complete with site plan, details, etc. and taking care of pricing, bidding, change orders, running the project, etc.).

 

For JUST the drawings, on a house that size, I typically shell out about 15-20 pages (if the builder doesn't require less) and I'm between $2,500 and $3,500.  I think that's way more in line with most areas...but then again maybe that's why my volume is through the roof all the time?  Just my $.02...


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#8 Thomas Roman

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Posted 05 May 2021 - 10:38 AM

Sadly there are no "standards" for architect (building designer) fees...
Long ago, the AIA used to publish standard or recommended fees.. but it was deemed illegal for them to do so..
Yet, Realtors can rely on such "standard" rates... why is that then legal?.. I never understood that..
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#9 Steve and Carla Farnam

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Posted 08 May 2021 - 08:25 AM

Jeremy,  I agree that value is client specific. The clients we drew this set of plans for were relieved  when we gave them this low price for their project. Another Designer quoted them 35,000.00 and an Architectural firm quoted a base fee of 10% of the completed project. Every area of the country is different and I was curious how the areas compared. With median home prices in our area over $700,000.00 and with high cost of living an adjusted fee structure occasionally becomes necessary to stay in business. We, my wife and I, work together with a combined experience of 98+ years in hands on construction and design and feel this should bring with it some value to our customers. Given our current oversized workload we are comfortable with our fees being fair even though lower than others in our area.



#10 Sam Morgan

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Posted 08 May 2021 - 09:09 AM

I'm amazed sometimes at the differences in prices around the country for the same kind of work.  I don't do anything for less than $2.00 a foot above grade heated space....I have colleagues around the country that are anywhere from 50 cents to 6.00 a foot for the same work.  I'm busier than ever and probably need to raise prices again this year.  I've done $325k worth of design proposals since January 1st and even with crazy lumber prices, the phone keeps ringing every day.  


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#11 Steve and Carla Farnam

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Posted 08 May 2021 - 09:32 AM

Sam, We have also been busier the last year than any other year, not enough hours in the days each week to keep up. The houses are all getting larger and more complex, which is fun but time consuming at the same time.

We just raised our prices and as you said even with the increased lumber prices etc the phone keeps ringing. Talked to truss supplier yesterday and they are at 4-6 weeks out to get a truss quote. Builders are taking construction reservations at 2+ years out and holding the slot with a non refundable $10,000.00 deposit.



#12 Sam Morgan

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Posted 08 May 2021 - 10:25 AM

I had a builder tell me yesterday that they are cancelling contracts on 6 homes i just finished for them and offering to just sell the lots to the buyers and let them find their own builder.  They are a fixed cost builder and are afraid they can't even get lumber let alone guarantee the price.  I suggested they tell people they have to agree to cost plus contract and move forward.  Other than the crazy financing of the past, this feels a lot like 2006/2007 so I've been stockpiling cash....I'm not going to be in the same position I was in 2008 as a developer/builder when the music stops this time



#13 Steve and Carla Farnam

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Posted 08 May 2021 - 01:09 PM

Sam, We hear ya on the stockpiling cash. We were busy building custom homes when the 2008 festivities began. Fortunate to have sold one and moved into one that we had just framed. Finished it over the

next few years. Thinking about selling it now but would not be able to find a reasonably priced  piece of ground to build on and end up with a house half the size for more dollars. Holding tight

for now. Interesting times!



#14 Thomas Roman

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Posted 09 May 2021 - 07:37 PM

Big factor in comparing fees is what you're providing.. I can draw a set of plans for a $1,500,000 house, 4,500 sq.ft., for a preferred contractor, and we can get through permits with, say,10 drawing sheets, no structural (by others), no site plan (by others), no site visits.. that's the minimum I might offer for a house like that..
Or we can provide a set of plans of, say, 45 drawing sheets with all sorts of cool custom details, interior elevations, custom fascia and rafter tail details, custom railings, etc., etc.. include a site plan.. include structural details and draft the structural foundation and framing plans... assume site visits..that might be the maximum ..
And there is everything in between..
I think often designers talk fees, and they're actually comparing apples and oranges..
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