Architect’s Fees: Detailed prices for a work

An architect’s fees are the first investment in your project and will be the best price invested for your new building. This is because they reflect the experience, effectiveness, responsibility, design, and even the viability of your work. Here we explain the bases for calculating prices for an architect.

Understanding the cost of an architect and architecture rates in Spain is an increasingly complicated task. This is because fewer and fewer scales are published and there are technicians who do not take real costs into account. Therefore, an architect’s fees can vary depending on the technician, as there is incomparable value that the qualified professional brings to each project.

Therefore, the value of a good architect is paramount. This is approximately 10% of the work and can define its viability and success. But let’s specify much more. Here we offer you a detailed guide on what you need to know regarding Architects’ fees for carrying out works.

The Importance of Architects’ Fees

Architect fees constitute much more than a simple cost in your project; They represent an investment that has an impact on the success and viability of the project and future work. In this sense, it is worth remembering that the world of construction is complex, and having an architect who looks after your interests is crucial . Therefore, an architect can be a very significant savings because they will be able to optimize costs during construction and advise you with total objectivity to give the best feasibility and design to your work.

Costs of an Architect

Regarding architect costs and architectural fees , it is vital to understand that you are not paying only for the time and effort invested in the design of your project. But you are investing in the technical experience of a professional who will make a much more expensive work viable. And it can also transform your ideas into reality, while ensuring that the project is executed efficiently along with a creative vision.

An Architect from an important City Council in the province of Barcelona (I will not say the exact name but it is a municipality that has more than 250,000 inhabitants), explained to me that there is a high number of projects (between 1/3 and 1/4 of the projects ) that do not pass the construction permit processing.

This, in many cases, is due to the fact that the Architect knows how to advise his client well and does not understand the regulations applicable to the site. Therefore, to start your project correctly, contact experienced architecture firms involved and who may have a strong knowledge of the applicable regulations.

Sergi Pujadó Soler

Long Term Value

An architect’s fees reflect the ability to make your project viable and add value to your space beyond a simple construction. It is true that a well-thought-out design can influence aspects such as natural lighting, ventilation, and the integration of the environment. Therefore, aspects that not only improve the quality of life of users but can also reduce future operating costs. For this reason, since a building project is for life, we advise you that when considering the cost of an architect, you think about the long-term benefits of their work.

In short, by making informed decisions about architect fees , you ensure not only the viability of your project, but also its success and creativity.

Architecture Fees in Spain

Average architecture fees in Spain fluctuate depending on several factors, including geographic location, size and complexity of the project. As a general reference, architects can apply a percentage that ranges between 5% and 15% of the Material Execution Budget (PEM) of the construction for their professional services. This percentage range reflects the scope of action and the responsibilities assumed during the project.

Formerly, Architects’ fees were established by the College of Architects, but today, due to general and European regulations, they are no longer published. However, at Pujadó Soler we have studied it very well and have generated an application that calculates fees in a similar way.

The percentage of fees of an Architect

Basically, the determination of the previous percentage based on the Material Execution Budget (PEM) of the work is not random, but depends on its surface.

Therefore, one of the things that practically no one explains to you is that this percentage of the PEM varies depending on the surface of the work. For example, 15% of the PEM would be for small works, while 5% is for very large works (eg more than 100,000 m2). This rule of percentages based on surface area is determined by the old fee tables of the Colleges of Architects.

Next, it calculates the % of the Material Execution Budget (PEM) of an Architect’s fees according to the Pujadó Soler formula using the action surface of a project.

% de Honorarios del PEM

% de Honorarios del PEM


What is the PEM of a work?

So far we have seen that an architect’s fees depend on the PEM of the work. Therefore, to calculate the fees of an Architect we must know this value.

The Material Execution Budget (PEM) is the price for the materials and labor of a construction (the PEM only does not take into account the industrial profit or the general expenses of the construction company, nor the VAT). But how do we calculate this Material Execution Budget in the initial phases of the project or preliminary project?

The College of Architects solved it through a formula for calculating the Reference Budget. This Reference Budget would be equivalent to the PEM of the work, but in an initial phase.

Therefore, it must be updated regarding the construction price. This is a so-called Basic Module per square meter with which the College of Architects still continues to update annually.

For example, the College of Architects of Catalonia updated the basic module for the year 2024 in December 2023 with a value of €646. This value is not directly a PEM price per square meter, but rather a trend in the construction price, year after year.

To calculate the PEM value, many factors must be taken into account, such as the location of the work, the type of building, or the use of this building. This last value has a great impact on the PEM of the work. For example, a luxury hotel could be 3 times more expensive than a warehouse, or a garage, for the same surface area.

In summary, the Material Execution Budget (PEM) is a basic value to calculate an Architect’s fees for a work. This value is based on a Basic Module which is a price per square meter where, multiplying by the square meters and some coefficients, we obtain an approximate PEM of the work. But the formula is not that simple, there are many factors in the PEM of a work.

Factors that influence the PEM of the work.

Architects’ fees in Spain are not static and can vary depending on a number of key factors. For example, the type of action (new construction, extension, renovation, etc.) can modify these values. Below, we break down the aspects that most influence the determination of these fees.

Complexity of the Project (eg New construction or Renovation)

Projects that present challenges, whether due to special design requirements, technical difficulties or the need to comply with specific regulations, demand a greater investment of time, technical knowledge and creativity on the part of the professional. For example, projects with an existing current state are usually a little more complex than those of a new construction. Therefore, a reform or expansion is reflected in higher fees.

Use of the Project and Type of building (eg home or hotel)

The specific purpose of the project (residential, commercial, educational, etc.) and the type of building (party wall, corner or detached) also influence costs. Each of these aspects carries with it unique considerations in terms of design, regulations and technical complexity, directly affecting the PEM and therefore the architect’s fees.

Scope of Services (eg total project or partial documents)

The scope of services requested has a direct impact on fees. Minor works projects that may require simpler technical documentation. Or construction projects that require additional services, such as interior design, construction management, landscape architecture, or specialized sustainability consulting, may increase the total cost due to the expansion of the work required.


An Architect acquires a very high contractual commitment to you. In Spain, the Building Planning Law (LOE) establishes a 10-year guarantee for structural damage. Therefore, a very important part of an Architect’s fees is his contractual commitment to the work and the guarantee that he, together with the other building agents, must provide.

Architect Experience

Finally, the experience and prestige of the architect are also aspects that can influence the fee structure. Professionals with a long history of successful projects and industry recognition typically command higher rates, reflecting their skill level and the quality assurance they bring to each project. It is worth remembering that an architect’s fees can be a significant saving for your work, if he or she has experience in optimizing costs and carrying out measurements. Therefore, the variation in fees due to architects’ experience, where the works are very expensive and involve a lot of money, is more than justified by the success of the works. This is because we want to remind you that the architect must defend the interests of his client.

Other Justified Expenses of an Architect

Hiring an architect involves more than paying for their time and effort spent on design. Fees also cover:

  • Continuous training and technical knowledge: Investments in continuous training and specialization allow the architect to stay up to date with regulations and developments in architecture and construction.
  • Operating and office expenses: Rental of work space, specialized design and architecture software, drawing materials, and communication and transportation expenses.
  • Self-employed contributions and Social Security contributions: Mandatory contributions that guarantee your rights to benefits and services.
  • Civil Liability Insurance (RC): Coverage that protects the professional against possible claims for damages derived from their work.
  • External consultancies: In some projects, it may be necessary to hire additional specialized services. For example, structural engineering, installation consulting, sustainability, etc.
  • Taxes: Any professional service performed in Spain will have to be taxed with Value Added Tax (VAT), in this case it is 21%.

Architect fees for a work

Next, to facilitate architect quotes, we have developed a specific tool. This allows you to calculate architect fees for different types of work, such as new constructions, comprehensive renovations and extensions. And all this taking into account the points described above with the particularity of being adapted for Architects in Barcelona , ​​although it could also be used for other provinces in Spain.

Therefore, adapted to different needs, this tool becomes a key resource to know the prices of an architect, providing a basis of transparency and outstanding communication from Pujadó Soler.

Fee Architect Calculator

Fee Architect Calculator

Parking, ground floor premises, etc.
Budget for the execution of swimming pool, garden, urbanization, etc.
Type of Construction
Main Use
Project Type

Budget comparison: added costs

By understanding what an architect’s fees include, you will be in a better position to make decisions, ensuring you get the most value from your investment.

Therefore, we have to explain to you that there are a series of expenses that may be additional according to the Architect’s budget document, they may or may not be included. These expenses are the following:

  • Visas: Essential to validate the regulatory compliance of the project, visas by professional associations incur specific fees that vary depending on the size and characteristics of the project.
  • External Technicians who may be part of the project or Architecture team: The complexity of certain projects requires the intervention of specialists in various areas, which may entail additional fees:
    • Facilities Engineer: For the design and supervision of electrical, sanitary, and air conditioning systems, among others.
    • Structural Engineer: Necessary to calculate the structural stability and safety of the building.
    • Sustainability Consultant: To integrate design and energy efficiency solutions.
    • Other specialists: Depending on the project, additional consultants may be required in areas such as acoustics, health and safety, etc.
  • Site-Specific Studies: Several studies may be necessary:
    • Telecommunications Engineer : It is mandatory to carry out a telecommunications project for multi-family homes.
    • Geotechnical Study: Necessary in new construction and in structural reforms where there is a load modification. This is a study of the characteristics of the terrain to calculate the design of foundations.
    • Topographic : The surveyor is necessary to capture on a plane the initial terrain or the initial state of a complex building. This is to precisely determine the terrain. It is important for the design.
  • Quantity Surveyor or Technical Architect: He is a fundamental and mandatory technician (in new construction and many major works) for construction management and quality management.
  • Site Specific Studies: For adequate planning and design, several studies may be necessary:
  • Interior Design: The project may or may not include specialized services. Such as interior design.
  • Energy Certificate : Architecture projects according to the latest modifications of the Technical Building Code (CTE) involve carrying out energy calculations and the subsequent energy certificate.

Importance of Hiring a Qualified Architect

Hiring a qualified architect for your project is crucial. These professionals, in addition to being registered and complying with the highest levels of ethics and professionalism, add immense value to any project, optimizing the architect’s cost and improving the architecture rate through efficient and strategic services.

Economical and Savings in Architect Fees

The economic efficiency during the work provided by a qualified architect is essential for the management of any architectural project. By taking accurate measurements during the project, you can help:

  • Avoid budget overruns: Intelligent planning and design ensure that the project stays within budget, thus optimizing the architect’s cost .
  • Selection of efficient materials: Expert advice on the most cost-effective materials and construction solutions, without compromising quality.
  • Efficient design: Beyond aesthetics, an efficient design focused on functionality and sustainability represents significant savings in maintenance and energy in the long term.

Value Added Services of Architects

Architects offer services that go beyond design and construction, adding exceptional value to your project:

  • Sustainable Design: Incorporation of sustainability principles to reduce energy consumption and minimize environmental impact, reflecting conscious management of architect fees .
  • Project Management: Effective supervision of the construction process and coordination with contractors and other professionals to ensure smooth project progress.
  • Budget Management: Effective project budget management strategies, providing detailed cost estimates and encouraging savings.
  • Contract Administration: Competent management of contracts with contractors and suppliers, ensuring that agreed terms are properly met.

Hiring a qualified architect ensures not only the completion of your project in accordance with the highest standards of quality and regulatory compliance, but also efficient management of resources. This translates into significant savings and an increase in the long-term value of your investment, reflecting the importance of carefully selecting the architect cost and architectural fees for your project.

Practical Examples of Building Efficiency

In our commitment to excellence and transparency in each project, Pujadó Soler’s building section stands out for establishing precise measurements that support economic efficiency and optimization of architect fees . This meticulous approach not only ensures a more accurate cost estimate from the outset, but also significantly reduces the possibility of incurring extra costs during the construction phase.

Reduction of added costs in Construction

Thanks to the experience and technical knowledge of our team, we are able to anticipate the specific needs of each project. Through a detailed planning and design process, we provide accurate measurements that are reflected in accurate and realistic budgets. This level of precision is vital to avoid significant deviations in costs and to ensure that the project is developed as planned, respecting both the deadlines and the initial budget.

Success stories

At Pujadó Soler we have consistently demonstrated how a meticulous approach in the planning phase can lead to considerable savings for clients like you. All this, while maintaining design integrity and construction quality. These success stories highlight the importance of choosing a qualified architect who knows how to manage an entire project and work effectively.

The integration of precise measurement practices is a clear example of how Pujadó Soler goes beyond expectations, ensuring that each project meets the highest standards of architectural excellence, and also reflects excellent financial management.

Transparency in Pujadó Soler’s architectural fees

At Pujadó Soler Arquitectura y Edificación, we understand that transparency is essential to build a relationship of trust with our clients. Therefore, we explain in detail the inclusion or exclusion of documents, if necessary.

Our approach includes:

  • Detailed Breakdown: We provide a detailed breakdown of our fees, including fees for each stage of the project. This allows our clients to understand exactly why and how much they are paying.
  • Clear Communication of Additional Expenses: We are clear about any additional expenses that may arise. Our goal is to avoid surprises, ensuring you have a full understanding of the financial implications from the start.
  • Customization of Services: We understand that each project is unique. That’s why we adjust our proposals to fit the specific needs of your project, ensuring you receive the best value without compromising quality or design integrity.
  • Commitment to Project Success: At Pujadó Soler, we not only offer you our design services; We are committed to the long-term success of your project. This means considering aspects such as energy efficiency, sustainability and the impact on the environment from the planning phase.

By choosing Pujadó Soler, you ensure that you are working with a team that values ​​transparency and communication as much as you do. We strive to make the design and construction process as clear and simple as possible, allowing you to make informed and confident decisions every step of the way.

Conclusion: Make an Informed Decision About Architect Fees

Hiring an architect is the first important step in any construction project. Therefore, understanding architect fees and the factors that influence them will allow you to make informed decisions that align with your budget and the specific requirements of your project.

It is essential to prioritize hiring a qualified architect who provides experience and excellence in design. And that also offers key skills in project or construction management. Transparent communication about architectural fees , fee proposals and additional expenses will ensure an effective and successful collaboration between you and your architect.

At Pujadó Soler we are sure that investing in the services of an architect is not an expense, but an investment in the success and efficiency of your project. Their knowledge, experience and creativity are essential to realizing your vision, while ensuring that the project is developed in a functional, safe and aesthetically attractive manner.

In conclusion, considering architect fees as a fundamental investment guarantees added value to your project, far exceeding the initial cost. We invite you to contact Pujadó Soler to discover how we can help you turn your architectural dreams into reality, optimizing each step of the process for your benefit.