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Architect cost for house plan

Architect cost for house plan

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In this article, I have put together the estimated architectural cost of designing a house plan in Nigeria. Which I believe will be of help to you.

The current architectural fees in Nigeria

The cost of designing a house by an architect varies from person to person in Nigeria. The cost depends on what the client wants, the complexity, and the simplicity of the design. Simple design tends to cost less than that of the complex one.

Also, commercial design cost higher than a residential design. For example, in the case of a public project, which is a government project, it can cost from ₦500,000 to ₦5,000,000.

If it is an individual project, the estimated cost of bungalow design from a professional architect ranges from ₦150,000 to ₦300,000. While that of the duplex is from ₦250,000 to ₦500,000.

Read: How to build a house on a small budget in Nigeria

How much does an architect cost to design a house in Nigeria?

The image below shows an example of a simple architectural design, it is an architectural design of 3 bedrooms bungalow. The cost of this type of design can vary from individual to individual or from location to location.

architect cost to design a house in Nigeria

For example, if you were to get it from an unregistered Architect in Lagos state Nigeria, the estimated cost is from ₦50,000 to ₦200,000. If you were to get the design in Enugu state Nigeria you can get it from ₦50,000 to ₦150,000. On the other hand, if you were to get it from a student it is likely going to be lesser.

Check out >>> out our interior design bed frames  for sale

Architectural charges

An Architect does not have a fixed cost. Its charges or fees are always based on the volume of the details that make up the drawing,  scope of the project, or by percentage Just as the legal profession engages professional percentages in billing clients, so does the architectural profession.

Also, it depends on the size of the project, and the location of the project at the same time the level of work you want the architect to do.

However, it is unfortunate that the economic situation of the country has affected the system so much, that architectural fees are negotiated like pepper in the open market, forcing new entrants into the profession to compromise standards and consequently value.

The Nigerian Institute of Architects stipulated 8% charges for the total project cost. That is to say, before the commencement of work, a professional should first ask for a commitment fee from the client, start work on the design, consult a QS for a B.O.Q(Bill of quantity) or an MLP (material, labor, and professional cost), before billing the client reasonably.

These are part of the reason why architectural costs are a bit high.

Read: Cost of building a 3 bedroom flats/bungalow in Nigeria 2020

The disadvantage of engaging an inexperienced architect due to cheap quote

Getting a cheap quote from a desperate architect or even a quack, who calls himself an architect has strong negative effects, especially in the future.

  • One of the common problems clients often encounter for using an inexperienced architect is “design with a wrong dimension”, which after construction can lead to dissatisfaction, changes, and extra cost.
  • Secondly, the design method, quality, and software are entirely different and have lower standards than those of the professional.
  • Thirdly, unmindful of design codes and principles.
  • Inability to deliver drawings that will meet the approval.
  • Lastly, unaware of the importance of capital or financial value of the proposed building.

Architect cost in Nigeria

architect cost

There are industry standards in terms of fees and the level of involvement required when it comes to architectural services and their cost.

However, based on relationships or level of desperation you can get lower negotiated fees as low as ₦50,000 or ₦60,000 especially from undergraduates, new graduates searching for a job, or dropouts, etc.

Cost of Architectural design |Cost of architectural drawing in Nigeria from a registered professional

Minimum cost₦150,000
Average Cost₦400,000
Maximum cost₦2,000,000 to ₦5,000,000

In some cases, some may overcharge especially if it is a government project, or if the architect has workers that are to be paid, sometimes it might be in a case where the architect sees the client as someone that has the financial capability.

However, we advise you to engage with the services of a registered and professional architect with many years of practical experience and negotiate fees with him/her. But note, the fees should not be higher than the scale of recommended fees.

If you don’t have the money or you just want a draft, you may use a new graduate, undergraduate, or young graduate as an alternative. Which is not recommended.

Read: Requirements for Building Plan Approval

Please note

The quality of works, services, and amount given to you by an architect, will determine the level of experience, the scope of work, the volume of the details that make up the drawing and the professionalism he or she has, also the value he/she will put into the work.

Architect cost of designing a 2 bedrooms apartment

Prices although differ depending on the individual but some prices are way off-limit. However depending on your geographic location, and the architect involved in the design. A 2 bedroom apartment bungalow in semi-detached form and one-story building duplex in Lagos Nigeria ranges between ₦150,000 to ₦400,000.

Nevertheless, charges or cost depends on how huge or small the project is. For example, the design of 5 bedroom apartment at the cost of ₦250,000 when compared to 4 bedrooms at the cost of ₦400,000 might depend on its functions, location, square meter, the scope of the project, and more.

Cost of drawing a house plan in Nigeria (professional fee)

Architectural approval drawing plan

Drawing a building plan requires an experienced professional to handle it if part of the purpose is to submit it for approval. Also, the cost is different when compared with an ordinary plan drawing that doesn’t need to be submitted for approval.

Sometimes the client ends up getting a disapproved building permit, this is as a result of not following the laydown approval requirement when designing the building plan.

This is a frequent mistake made by unprofessionals because they are not aware of some tricks involve when it comes to building plan approval.

The cost of drawing a residential house plan by a professional and registered architect ranges from

₦150,000 to ₦350,000 for bungalows

₦250,000 to ₦500,000 for story buildings

₦300,000 to ₦800,000 for duplex (both contemporary building and traditional building)

The cost of drawing a commercial building plan by a professional and registered architect ranges from

₦300,000 to ₦600,000 Shopping mall

₦250,000 to ₦700,000 offices

₦300,000 to ₦1,000000 for filling station

Architect and draughtsman

Who is a chief consultant in a building project?

An architect is the ‘chief consultant’ in a building project, who coordinates other professionals such as civil/structural, M&E, builders, etc. from the design stage to the completion stage.

But most times clients are bent on cutting costs, so they end up disrupting the process. By choosing to consult a draughtsman or even a bricklayer, because of the belief that since they are the elements they see on site they should know better than the architect, who was trained for so many years to be a ‘thinker‘.

Meanwhile, When the ‘thinker‘ is allowed to think through the project and provide ‘instructions’, otherwise referred to as ‘Architect’s Instruction‘ then, we can avoid the continuous cases of building collapse, rising dampness (for failure to use DPM), and numerous meaningless grotesque structures referred to as beautiful homes just because it is glowing from new paint.

Please Note:

Draughts-men are not trained to design, but to draught (i.e. draw in simple terms) which means translate an architect’s design or sketch into a drawing.

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why you should use an architect and not a draughtsman

hire an architect

  • Architects are completely different from a draughtsman. An architect gives you the best design that suits your area and needs, as a professional with over seven (7) years of training in the university.
  • He also works with the client to find out what exactly is their aim. That is if the property is going to be for lease, sales, or personal, at the same time consider the location and the structure of the land, etc.
  • In other to determine the final design and to provide functionally appealing and aesthetic design, an architect makes sure you get a better value for your building.
  • Architects sometimes are called to the site if the needs arise, especially if a difficult puzzle is discovered. Also, you can always refer to your architect any time you want a change or advice.
  • While a draughtsman can give you cheap design with poor functionality that reduces the value of your house because he is not an expert.

Generally, if you can spend millions to complete a good house so why not work with a better design that makes your building unique and gives it better financial value.

From our experience, we have often re-design so many buildings even at the construction stage where the functionality is so bad, the client ended up blaming himself for using a draughtsman initially.

There are a lot of differences, paying ₦50,000 or more to save a project that will swallow millions. Is better and reasonable to avoid penny wise pound foolishly.

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Advantage of using an architect

  • An architect helps to produce the design or the blueprint of the proposed building project.
  • He helps to add financial value to the proposed building project.
  • A registered architect also helps to produce the documentation required for building plan approval.
  • He/she can oversee (supervises) “if given” the entire building project to make sure every detail on the drawing is been followed.
  • He/she make sure the proposed building project follows the laydown rules and associated building codes.
  • An architect can also help to get reliable contractors or laborers for the project.

Some disadvantage of using an architect

  • The cost of using an architect sometimes can be high.
  • When you engaged an inexperienced architect, mistakes and changes can result in poor jobs and over cost.
  • Some unreliable architects can work with contractors to rep clients off their money.

The consequence of NOT using the right professional like Architect, builders & Engineers

Even though the building often looks good after completion, but with time the paints will start wearing off, the building will also start having different cracks or the ground and the walls may start to soak water within the shortest time.

Also, the reasons why cases of collapsed buildings seem to be increasing in the country can be traced to defects in due process in construction and the use of cheap professionals or contractors that has no or little knowledge on the job.

Nowadays, clients often discover these too soon. We have consulted for clients, who had built a house before we met him. But they appreciate the difference now.

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Difference between Quacks and certified architects

Quacks say ‘Yes sir’ to the clients. Certified architects insist on design principles

Tips on things to do or discuss with your architect

  1. You will need to sign a contract, stating the fee, scope of work, and the services he/she is to provide. Make sure everything is stated on the contract and is very clear for all parts to understand and signed.
  2. Ensure you stipulated on the contract that “if by mistake, you find any design error the architect will have to correct it without extra charges”.
  3. “If after the design you don’t like it, the architect will have to redesign or modify it with no or little extra cost”.


Ways to start looking for the right architect for your project in Nigeria

  1. Through Referral: These days you can easily meet an architect through a friend or relative contact, especially if you happen to see the proof of his or her work.
  2. Through online: one of the popular ways of engaging or hiring an architect is online. I also admit that is the fastest way of getting an architect to work on a project easily. But it has some disadvantages.
  3. Lastly, through Buy a genuine real estate property in Nigeria”: we offer professional architectural design services irrespective of the building location in Nigeria for both local and international customers.

4 bedroom semi-detached – Residential apartments in estate Lekki, Lagos

Frequently Ask Questions (FAQ)

How much does an architect cost to draw plans in Nigeria?

The cost of drawing a plan or designing a building plan by an architect is a factor of the type of client, the project scope, and the volume of the details which make up the design.

Also, the price varies based on the type of design. The estimated cost for a bungalow is from ₦50,000 to ₦350,000. While that of a duplex is from ₦150,000 to ₦400,000.

Meanwhile, the cost of designing a factory can cost higher. The estimated cost is from 400,000 to 1,000,000

How do architects charge for projects in Nigeria?

Architect charges or fees on building projects in Nigeria strictly depend on:

  • The scope of the project.
  • The size of the project
  • The volume of the details of the project.
  • Statues of the client. For instance, if the client is an affluence person or the government, an architect charge based on a percentage of the total project and the money can be paid in stages or phases. But if the client is an average income earner the amount can be negotiated based on the scope of the project and the details involved.

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How much does an architect charge to design a simple 3 bedrooms bungalow?

The cost of this type of design varies from location to location.

For example, if you were to get it in Lagos state Nigeria, the estimated cost is from ₦150,000 to ₦300,000. While if you were to get the design in Enugu state Nigeria you can get it from ₦150,000 to ₦250,000. Also if you were to get it from a student it is likely going to be lesser.

If you need the service of an Architect, feel free to get in touch with us.

I hope you find the article helpful if you have questions, corrections, or addition please drop it in the comment below, also if you have a different architectural quote from an architect, please feel free to leave the cost below.

You may want to read:

Why you need an architect to design your house
Ways to know if an architect is good or qualify to handle your building project | Architect in Nigeria

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Victoria Nonye Web design, Content writer & SEO, Real Estate Consultant/Agent Email: vic4realy@yahoo.com

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