architectural fees for homes and buildings explained

Invoicing on Architectural Projects

Invoicing on Architectural Projects reviews when architects generally send out invoices and when they are expected to be paid.

First, see:  Fee Distribution over Project Phases. That explains about how much might be billed and when during a project.

Regarding specific invoices, architects might tend to invoice about once a month, although this might be more often, perhaps twice, depending on what work is being accomplished and how many hours are being accumulated.  In general, architects tend to be a bit nervous when too many unbilled hours are being gathered, so they will bill when they feel it is necessary to compensate them for the work they are performing and not be too far in arrears.

It is common these days for architects’ contracts to require that their clients pay them within 7 to 10 days of the date on the invoice.  Most architects invoice electronically now, so clients need to be responsive and pay in a timely manner.  There is no reason to not do so.  In bygone eras, it was common for architects receivables to be 30, 60, 90, even 120 days past due.  Many of those firms that allowed such lackadaisical payment performance on the part of their clients are no longer in business.  Many of today’s architects are better businesspeople than in previous eras.  Today’s architects often have late payment clauses attached to their agreements and invoices, so that if clients do late pay, then they will also be assessed interest.  Architects are like any business, anywhere: they work hard for their money and deserve to be paid in a timely manner.  Anyone who works for a living can understand this policy.  For instance, if you receive a weekly paycheck, how would you feel if your employers one day didn’t give you your normal paycheck and didn’t say anything about that?  In this manner, the golden rule applies: pay others as you would like to be paid.


Architects will typically bill for the hours they have worked, multiplied by their billed rate agreed to in the agreement with them, or for a portion of the fixed fee or other proportional arrangement.  Hourly billing makes the most sense for most projects and is the fairest method for all parties.