How Much Does Drafting Cost?

Like in any profession, the costs of hiring a draftsman’s services will vary depending on the skill and experience level of the draftsperson, and the complexity of the architectural plans he is working on. While draftees are not allowed to supervise building projects in the same way as architects, they do provide cost-effective services that cover all your design needs. 

Typically, the lower-end price of drafting services costs are $50 per hour, with higher end services going up to more than $100 per hour. Some drafters may charge depending on the size of the project, with prices ranging anywhere from $15 to $25 per square meter.

Drafting prices
Drafting cost

To give you an illustration of how much different drafting & design tasks would cost, here are examples: 

  • Small and medium rooms, added to an existing residence, typically costs under $2,000. 
  • Medium to large rooms, or two small rooms, would cost just above $2,000. 
  • Redesigning a large house would cost a little under $4,000. 
  • A full house plan, designed from scratch, would cost around $6,000. This includes everything from the initial concept, to a couple of revisions, to the final drawings for council.
  • Full working drawings and room layouts without any designing will be between $2000 and $4500 for the majority of houses. 

At any rate, draftsmen typically send fixed quotes depending on what you need. You can always inquire about the individual components of these fees, but here are the most common factors: 

Skill level

While almost every draftsman has been trained to provide plans for residential projects, you might be looking for one who can help with a commercial design. This is a specialised skill, and therefore the drafting is a higher price. Being able to create projects that cover bigger scopes would naturally require investment in advanced raining. 

Job complexity

Some projects are more difficult because of the level of detail needed. Sometimes, even a small project requires specifications that are more difficult to produce, therefore needing more time and skill. 

Also, the way the plans are drawn up will affect the costs. Preliminary plans would cost less than full-blown plans. Having the plans altered would also incur more costs. Additional processes, such as the submission of the plans to the council, enlisting the help of an engineer, or any other task not solely related to drafting will also incur extra costs. 


Draftsman jobs are further complicated by the timeframe in which the plans need to be accomplished. The general rule is that the longer the time needed to complete them, the more they will cost. The time needed for completion is also directly correlated with the complexity of the work. 


Different states in Australia also have different hourly rates for draftsmen, though the difference may be minimal. In Victoria, WA, and NSW, for example, the going rate starts at $50 an hour. This rate goes up to around $55 an hour for Queensland, while for SA it starts at around $57 per hour. 

What About Price Differences? 

When you go about checking architectural drafting prices, it’s common to see huge differences in their quoted prices. Some would even go as fast as offering half the price of other draftsmen. 

Taking into account the information above, it is important to check not just the end price but also the various services incorporated in that price. Some draftsmen with higher quotes may even end up to be a more cost-effective solution because they offer more services which are relevant to your needs. In case you are seeing line items which you think are not relevant, you may ask the draftsman to amend the quote. 

When you are faced with competing quotes that offer the same level of services, then it’s safe to go for the lowest. It is always a good idea to get quotes from all local draftsmen with the relevant skills and services, so you can get the best deals for your project. 

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