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Monday, February 23, 2009


 An Architect in India is paid Professional Fees in accordance with the stipulations laid down by the Council of Architecture (CoA), India. This has been briefly explained here.


The Council of Architecture, India, has prescribed the mandatory minimum Scale of Professional Charges under the Architects (Professional Conduct) Regulations, 1989, in order to make the Client fully aware of the fees chargeable by an Architect. In consideration of the Comprehensive Professional Services rendered by the Architect, he shall be paid professional fees for the following reasons:
  • The efforts involved in preparing designs,
  • The cost involved in making drawings and other documents,
  • The cost of supervision in terms of time of the Architect,
  • The fees paid to the different Consultants appointed by the Architect, and
  • Adequate compensation for responsibilities undertaken by the Architect.

  • Percentage- The fees payable to the Architect shall be computed as a percentage ( see Scale of Charges) of the Actual Cost of the project works, as on completion. The Actual cost of the project shall be the actual cost of the completed building work as calculated on the accepted tenders, including the cost of Structural, Sanitary, Plumbing and Electrical work, Sanitary and Electrical fittings and fixtures, lifts, escalators and all items on which the Architect has rendered professional services, but shall exclude the cost of the Client’s site office, cost of land and cost of supervisory staff at the site.
  • Negotiating Fees- The percentage fees listed in the Scale of Charges is the minimum payable for the Architect’s services. However, depending on the complexity of the project, the Architect is free to quote higher fees. For works costing upto Rs 15 Lakhs, the professional fees may be negotiable between the Architect and the Client. For projects of social importance like social housing, slum upgradation etc, the Architect’s fees are negotiable between the Architect and Client.
  • Lump-Sum Fees - The fees can be made Lump-Sum Fees, if it is the intention and desire of the Architect and Client that the fees be frozen at the time of award of the Contract.
  • 'Only Design' Fees -Roughly speaking, an Architect's work is broken into 3 stages. The first stage is design and planning. The second stage is detailed working drawings, tender drawing and tendering. The third stage is construction administration and supervision. So if a Client wants only designs and planning only, the fee should be approximately one third of the full service fee.
  • If the Client wants only the design and working drawings necessary for his Contractor to construct (and does not require the Architect's supervision), then the fees will be approximately half of the full service fee.
  • Consultants' Fees - The Consultants appointed by the Architect shall be paid by him, and their fees shall be calculated in accordance with the Conditions of Engagement and Scale of Fees prescribed by their respective professional Institutions recognized by the Government of India.
Note:It is not advisable to bargain with the Architect to quote lesser fees and/or furnish partial or incomplete service as it will be detrimental to the project and not in the interest of the Client.

  • No deductions shall be made from the fees of the Architect on account of penalty, liquidated damages, part rates or other sums withheld from payment or recovered from the Contractor or Suppliers.
  • If an Architect's professional services are curtailed after the  preliminary drawings have been prepared by the Architect, the Client is obliged to pay at least 20% of the fee for the remaining stage(s) of the curtailed work / services.

Any tax levied by law, such as Service Tax, etc shall be payable by the Client, over and above the gross fee charged by the Architect.

In addition to the fee payable, the Client will reimburse the Architect towards actual expenses of the following:
  • Return air fare or first class A.C. train fare for any out-station visits made by the Architect or his professional staff and first class train fare for non-professional staff to the site or such other place, in connection with the execution of work and performance of duties referred to in the agreement.
  • Actual lodging and boarding and local transport costs.
  • Cost of Presentation Drawings, Perspectives, models, computer simulation etc., if required by the Client.

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