20th Jun, 2022

Christy Houghton
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Christy Houghton
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Digital Content Writer

Across the country, people are putting their creativity to good use while earning high salaries in architecture. Architects plan, design and oversee the construction and conservation of buildings and spaces around them.

Average salary ranges

According to Reed.co.uk, the average architect salary in the UK is £69,015.

This can differ depending on the region you work in, along with other factors like the size of the business you work for, and your level of qualification.

Architects can work in various environments, designing interiors and exteriors, landscapes and cityscapes, commercial and residential buildings. Each type of architect has their own skill sets but the fundamental skills are highly transferable.

Landscape architect salary: The average landscape architect salary can reach anywhere between £20,000 and £50,000, depending on where you work. This type of architect designs outdoor spaces such as gardens and national parks.

Solutions architect salary: Salaries in London for these specialists can be anywhere between £87,500 and £517,500. The average solutions architect salary in the UK is between £70,000 and £537,500.

Demand is particularly high for this type of architect, who works to understand any problems that may arise on a project and come up with innovative solutions.

Enterprise architect salary: The average enterprise architect salary can reach between £70,000 and £135,000 a year in London, or £93,187 on average, and between £70,000 to £90,000 across the UK.

Despite the increase in hybrid and remote working, businesses are still based in head offices – the right enterprise architect is important to that company’s success.

Interior architect salary: An interior architect’s salary ranges from £20,000 to £50,000 a year regionally. In London and other cities, you may be able to earn up to £75,000 for residential interior design and architecture.

Qualifications/training required

Gaining a qualification in architecture is often expensive and takes a minimum of seven years to complete. However, once you have completed it you are well remunerated and also get the gratification of seeing your designs come to life.

According to the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) system, those with a BA or BSc undergraduate degree in architecture would be considered a ‘part-one’ architect – with a master’s degree or diploma, you would be considered a ‘part-two’ architect, and with a postgraduate certificate, you would be classed as a ‘part-three’ architect. Being a part-three architect means you are fully qualified.

Degree apprenticeships are also available, for those who would prefer to gain practical experience instead of studying full time. There are level-six and level-seven-degree apprenticeships that gain you a degree or a Master of Architecture (MArch), and part-two and part-three qualifications respectively.

Once you have a degree, architects must have at least two years of professional experience. You must then pass an additional exam and apply for a licence from the Architects Registration Board (ARB). Architects take on the responsibility of overseeing the projects they plan and for public safety, which is a challenging part of the role. That’s why it’s a job title protected by law – anyone not registered can’t call themselves an architect.

Those who choose to work without getting their licence are not considered architects, but they can work as architectural designers and hold no legal responsibility, despite having most of the same education and skills. This results in lower salaries across the board.

Roles and responsibilities of an architect

Architects must be able to adapt and wear several hats across different projects; this is part of what makes the role interesting. One day you might be a site surveyor or planning advisor, another day you might be a detailed designer or concept developer.

In the UK, the Royal British Institute of Architects provide guidelines for architects to follow, broken down into eight stages:

1. Strategic definition
2. Preparation and briefing
3. Concept design
4. Spatial coordination
5. Technical design
6. Manufacturing and construction
7. Handover
8. Use

The stages refer to an architect’s responsibilities while working on these projects, including the initial meetings with clients to understand their requirements and desirables, overseeing the progress of construction, and assessing and approving the building once the work is done.

Career progression

Licensed architects are required to do 35 hours of continued professional development every year to ensure their knowledge and skills are always up to date.

Junior architects: Salaries for part-one architectural assistants average £21,500, while junior technician/technologists earn £22,500. The average salary for part-two architectural assistants is £26,750.

Qualified architects: Recently qualified architects can earn an average salary of £30,000, comparable to architectural technicians/technologists who earn £30,750 on average. Architects with three-to-five years of experience have average salaries of £36,500.

Senior architects: At this level, senior technicians/technologists can earn, on average, £39,000. BIM and technical coordinators have average pay of £40,000, design coordinators earn an average of £42,000 a year, and senior architects receive around £44,000 on average.

Managerial architects: When architects reach managerial level, BIM managers earn an average of £48,000, technical managers make £50,500 on average and associate architects receive £50,750 a year in average remuneration. Design managers receive basic salaries averaging £52,250.

Architect benefits

In the UK, almost all workers are legally entitled to 5.6 weeks’ paid holiday a year; on top of this, employers can offer more time off than the legal minimum.

Some standard perks for architecture roles include:
• Funded continuing professional development
• Private medical insurance
• Paid overtime
• Contributory pensions
• Cycle-to-work schemes
• Mentoring
• Design reviews
• Skills-sharing sessions
• Interest-free season ticket loans

Employers can attract and retain the best architects by improving their benefits packages, through additional paid leave, time off in lieu, and providing flexible, hybrid or remote working options.

Architects’ main duties involve desk-based design work, with occasional meetings with groups, or visits to construction sites to assess the execution of their plans – this lends itself nicely to a hybrid working model.

If you want to learn more about the salaries and benefits you could be earning for your role, download our salary guides now.