Architects are essential in the world today. Their roles and duties are not restricted to the design and construction of edifices and monuments that include residential, commercial, and public buildings.
If you are eyeing a career in architecture, then you obviously will be interested in learning how much an architect earns. The truth is that, as you may have imagined, architecture is a lucrative career. And just like any other occupation, there are a lot of factors that determine if you earn little or much.
But before I get into the details of how much you can earn monthly as an architect, let's first discuss all you need to know to become an architect.
What Is Architecture?
Simply put, architecture can be defined as the business of designing and constructing buildings. But that is not what it all entails. It also involves careful planning, executing, and delivery of civil constructions. This could include buildings, roads, bridges, and other forms of construction projects.
Architecture is not just an art; it is science. The art is in the construction, while the science is in careful planning. The term is often also related to furniture pieces, but I wouldn't consider all furniture maker’s architects.
As a discipline, architecture is taught in tertiary institutions. A bachelor's program could span between three and four years, depending on the curriculum of your study program. You should check out this two minutes video for a short visual summary of what architecture is all about.
Becoming an Architect
Before you get to earn money as an architect, you will need to get trained and certified before you can then be hired for work. As an architect, you can work on private or public projects. Architects are like any other professionals like doctors and lawyers whose pay depends on their qualifications and experience.
To be able to earn big in architecture, you need first to gain admission to a college or university to study architecture. After graduation, you will need to gain experience working on projects relating to your field of practice.
The secret to moving quickly up the ladder is to work as an architect is a civil construction firm. This way, you will be faced with challenges regularly, which helps you gain the experience you need to climb up the ladder.
Duties of an Architect
What are the responsibilities of an architect? If you have been following the article from the beginning, then you should know a few things already. You should understand that architects involve themselves with the design and construction of building projects.
In reality, it doesn't begin and ends there. Other things will be expected of you if you decide to pursue a career in architecture. As an architect, your job will involve
- Meet with clients to discuss the objectives and requirements of a building project.
- Provide clients with an estimate of the cost and construction time of their projects.
- Prepare all the specifics concerning the structures and elements of construction.
- Supervise and work with team members who prepare the documents and drawings.
- Work with technology to provide precise 3D or CAD designs for clients and team members to work with.
- Prepare the documents of the contract for the building contractors.
- Be able to manage and supervise the contract if need be.
- Be able to market yourself and projects with the aid of illustrations and presentations to new clients.
How Much Does an Architect Earn?
This shortest answer to this question is that "depends."
There are a lot of factors that determine how much you earn as an architect. One important factor is your location and your experience level. As a fresh graduate, you should expect to receive lesser than someone with years of experience and multiple other certifications to back up their qualification.
Also, if you work with a top architectural or civil construction firm, you can expect to earn higher than working with a public bureau. This is because there are chances that you will score higher-paying clients working with established firms than working with your public construction firm that maintains public buildings.
There are numerous ways you can earn as an architect. You can decide to start your firm if you choose, partner with someone, or decide to work as a freelance architect. The opportunities for you to earn are endless. You should watch this short video to learn exactly how much an architect earns.
Like with many other industries, there isn't a fixed salary scale for new architects. In a 2018 report published by the U.S Bureau of Labor, statistics showed that architects in America could earn an average salary of $79,380 annually, which translates to $38.16 per hour. But this is not to say there isn't a slight chance you could earn more depending on the firm you work with.
In Canada, entry-level positions for architect comes with take-home pay of an average of $38, 602 yearly for architects. In the United Kingdom, architects could earn an average of £67,500 with fresh graduates earning more than £40,000 depending on if you work with a firm or as a freelancer.
You can find the average architect salary in selected countries around the globe on the table below.
|Country||Hourly Mean Wage||Yearly Mean Wage|
|Australia||$40 AUD||$58000 AUD|
|New Zealand||$38 NZD||$55000 NZD|
Tips to Earn More as an Architect
Becoming a successful architect means that you will need to have a wealth of knowledge about the profession, which will improve your earnings as well. While many factors affect the take-home pay of architects such as the location and the industry they work in, there is a lot you can do to earn more as an architect.
Below are some ways that you could make extra cash as an architect:
1. Increase Your Rates
If you want to make more money from your design and construction gigs, you could simply up your rates. If you were charging a flat rate of $20 per hour for your services, you could add in a $10 surcharge rate to even things out at the end of the week or month.
To be able to increase your rates as a professional successfully, you want to ensure that you deliver quality services your clients will love. If you can do this, they won't mind the extra charges to get the job done. You will find this video to be helpful in finding clients who will pay you your full quote.
2. Increase Your Workload
As an architect, the more work you carry out and contracts you execute, the more money you make at the end of the day. So it makes sense that if you are looking to make more money as an architect, you take up more gigs. You can reach out to your colleagues and clientele base and let them know that you will be taking more work.
You would need to consider your abilities when looking to take more construction gigs, as more work means that you will be even more tired than before. So it is always best that you are prepared for the additional work. This short video by the American Institute of Architects explains some useful tips in getting more work done as an architect.
3. Create and Sell Custom Products
Who says an architect can't create and sell their products? As a skilled architect, you could work with a team of programmers to develop software and programs that will be of use in architecture. All you need is an idea, and you could work with programmers to help bring it to life.
Aside from software, you could also create books and manuals on architecture and have your colleagues read it and possibly review it. If your work is widely accepted, you could be on your way to earning a decent income monthly from publishing architectural study materials.
4. Expand Your Services
Aside from architecture, there are some other closely-knit industries that you could also require your services. Apart from creating designs and blueprints, and even building and construction, there are different ways you could be of help.
You could work with home finishing and remodeling companies to ensure that the structure and integrity of the project are achieved. There are additional tips on this video on succeeding as an architect.
5. Strike a Partnership
One of the ways most businesses increase their clientele, and take-home pay is to strike a partnership. As a freelance architect, you could partner with other freelancers too and start a firm.
While it is possible to earn decent pay as a freelance architect, working as a firm/agency means that you can get more jobs, and also charge more for your services. So if you have a few architect friends who are in the same boat as you, then you could come together and pull resources and ideas together to start a firm.
6. Offer Consulting Services
You could provide consulting services to other architects and professionals in your industry. Designers and clients mostly like to have an architect around to help with interpreting the design plans and ensuring that everything is done accordingly.
Aside from building tips, you could also provide advice on legal matters patterning to construction and also assist with the financial breakdown of the entire project. If you sat down to think of it, you would find that there are additional services you can offer for a premium. You can watch this video for tips on how to become an architect consultant.
7. Offer Tutoring
They are a lot of students and fresh architecture graduates looking to learn how to use the recent software, and if you have the time, you could provide lessons and tutorials for a fee. If you are tech-savvy, you could create an Ad, and post it across social media to get people to notice you. If done correctly, you should get enough response from your ads.
If you don't have money for ads, but don't mind standing in front of a camera, you can create a YouTube channel or Facebook group where you share your knowledge. Once you gain enough subscribers, you could develop products and sell them to your audience for a discounted fee. You could join the YouTube partner program and also earn passive income from your channel.
While there isn't much money coming in directly from mentoring young architects, you certainly get rewarded in all kinds of ways. Being able to help fresh graduates find their footing in the architectural industry surely has a lot of benefits in the long run. Aside from building strong ties with other architects, you also make friends for life who will always be there for you in one way or another.
There is also the slight chance that you could get a little token from offering your expert ideas and suggestion to new and upcoming architects. You can find some useful tips on real estate mentorship here in this short video.
Frequently Asked Questions
I have answered some of the frequently asked questions you may have when starting a career in architecture. You can read all about them below.
As an architect, there is a lot of opportunity for you in the civil construction industry. While it may seem like the chances are slim for a fresh architectural graduate with no experience, firms are looking to hire architects with a bachelor's degree fresh out of the university.
There are a lot of things you can do to increase your chances of landing your dream job as an architect. You can check this short video for tips on how to become an architect. So now that you know how much an architect earns annually, you should be able to determine if a career in architecture will be lucrative or not.