Pendant lamp / contemporary / polypropylene / PC CONIA MINI BLACK AND GOLD

Pendant lamp / contemporary / polypropylene / PC CONIA MINI BLACK AND GOLD VITA copenhagen


  • Type:


  • Style:


  • Material:

    polypropylene, PC

  • Color:

    golden, black


The VITA™ Conia has a clear design reference to the shapes of nature, and its cone shape gives a soft and blind-free ambient light, making it a perfect artistic piece to illuminate every corner and dark spot in the house. The VITA Conia comes in White, Black & Gold and Copper.

Deciding how to bill clients is complicated. What are the basic fee structures behind residential projects?

In the same way that no two designers have the exact same aesthetic sensibility, architectural billing is tailored to the demands of a specific project. Nonetheless, certain industry-wide guidelines do apply. Here, Archinect breaks down common architectural fee structures in the U.S. as they relate to residential construction projects.

Broadly speaking, architects determine their fees based on either a flat hourly rate or as a percentage of the project’s construction costs. The customary percentage in the U.S. varies depending on the type of project: a commercial structure, for example, will generally have a different rate than a residential home or a concert hall. There are the different phases of the project itself, each of which accords for a certain percentage of the overall fee: the initial design concept phase, schematic design, construction documents, and construction administration.

Residential house design can be quite complex: case and point, John Lautner's Sheats-Goldstein House. Image via

Residential house design can be quite complex: case and point, John Lautner’s Sheats-Goldstein House. Image via

However, designing a custom single residential family house is perhaps one of the most complex projects an architect can undertake. Partially, this complexity derives from the relationship dynamics between the architect and client, the condition of the proposed house’s site (it is a brand new site, or a renovation of an existing structure? Are environmental impact reports required? Is everything permitted, licensed, etc.?), and theBe wary of figures found online, as they are often based on national averages, and can therefore even out at a lower rate.approximate budget the client has in mind. Also, houses require incredible detail in a way that most commercial projects do not. Cabinetry elevations, for example, can easily require 100 hours to draft (although they are not usually included in a standard service package).

According to, a client almost never accurately estimates the cost of residential construction, making it easy for an inexperienced client to balk at the numbers an architect may initially present them. A client may also lowball their budget specifically to try and lower the architect’s fees. Additionally, an architect may use the AIA’s “Cost-Plus” method to add a “cushion” to their hourly fee structure, to make sure they don’t end up in the red.

Remember that all fee rates are subject to time, place and negotiation, but for general purposes of discussion, a commonly cited range for fees on a residential project is 6-8 percent of the construction costs, according to However, this can also be at the lower-end of the spectrum, especially when compared to rates for projects in more competitive urban markets like New York or Los Angeles.

In general when calculating rates, be wary of figures found online, as they are often based on national averages, and can therefore even out at a lower figure. An LA-based architect told us they seek out “15% on smaller jobs”, but are aware of other locals getting as high as 18 percent. Another told us that an architect charging 15 percent is “doing very well indeed”, intimating that those clients must have multi-million dollar projects, and that they don’t know many architects getting more than 10 percent. Your mileage may vary.

Aside from the regional market, these figures can vary due to several factors. The total price of the project influences the percentage: as an example, a typical percentage for the rare house with a construction cost of over $50 million is 6.5 percent, while a house with a construction cost up to $100,000 would traditionally have a fee of 12 percent.

In this still from

In this still from “The Architect” (2016), clients Parker Posey and Eric McCormack clash with their architect’s design for their dream house.

Here’s a quick look at some of the major factors that influence pricing:


Surprisingly to clients, renovations tend to be far more expensive than brand-new construction, partially because of the need for existing conditions drawings, which are electronically accessible documents of the pre-existing structure before any renovations or changes are made. (Clients: unless you have architectural drawings in an electronic format, you can expect to pay for the generation of existing conditions drawings: paper copies, while having a certain nostalgic value, aren’t usable by most architectural firms. Also, it’s considered fair to bill hourly for the creation of these drawings because no one knows exactly how long it will take to draw them.) These drawings in and of themselves can add 2-5 percent on top of the baseline 6-8 percent fee.

UNDERSTANDING OF SERVICESThe client needs to understand what services they are paying for, and the architect needs to understand what the client expects

As mentioned earlier, the detail involved in residential design can make it quite costly. This level of detail—for example, whether a client elects to have an architect draw electrical schematics, something architects don’t automatically do—is an item that should be discussed up front for the sake of both client and architect. The client needs to understand what services they are paying for, and the architect needs to understand what the client expects. Some of these services include contractor negotiation, project management, and construction administration.

Depending on the size of the firm and the complexity of the project, certain phases of the project may actually be outsourced to other firms that specialize in that type of work. Every firm has a slightly different attitude toward what a “full package” of services means, so it’s worth everyone’s time to very specifically indicate what is and isn’t included in the fee structure.


Lastly, not all square feet are measured equally. In residential design/construction, square footage can be broken down into habitable space (aka “heated square feet”) and “gross square feet.” The latter is a figure of all available square footage in the unit; habitable space usually omits unfinished basements, porches, driveways, attics, and other spaces that would not be climate controlled. However, in order to create a reasonable fee structure, architects will factor some of the GSF into the habitable space to account for materials. A porch, for example, isn’t climate-controlled usually, but requires planking and railings, among other things. To bill for this, the architect may add additional space to the total habitable space calculations, even though the porch is not technically for inhabiting.

In sum, creating the fees for a project qualifies as its own kind of financial architecture.

This piece is part of our special editorial theme for July 2016, Domesticity. Submit to our open call for submissions through July 25, and check out related content here.

Broadway Malyan to Design Additional Towers for Jakarta Business Park

Broadway Malyan to Design Additional Towers for Jakarta Business Park, Courtesy of Broadway Malyan
Courtesy of Broadway Malyan

Broadway Malyan has been appointed to design eight towers for the CIBIS Business Park, a 12-hectare development in Jakarta, Indonesia. Previously, the firm developed the site’s original masterplan, as well as the design for Tower 9, and has since then been asked to additionally deliver Towers 1 through 8.

The goal of the overall project is to create a business village that reflects Indonesian culture, as well as international characteristics in order to bring people together in shared and mixed-use spaces.

The additional appointments for the other towers will help us to ensure continuity and integrity of the design approach and further the high quality office space in the area, noted Ed Baker, Director of Broadway Malyan.

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Courtesy of Broadway Malyan

Courtesy of Broadway Malyan

The project features a variety of sustainability measures, like underground parking to keep street levels pedestrian-friendly, green roofs, and rainwater management. Through these features, among others, the project has received LEED Platinum Pre-certification.

Tower 7 of the project will be a residential space, and all others will bring additional office space to the development.

Tower 9, the originally commissioned tower, is composed of 54,800 square meters of office and ground-level retail space, with the largest Grade-A office floor space in Jakarta, at 4,000 square meters. Tower 9 is expected to be completed this summer.

News via Broadway Malyan

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