The question of architect's fees is somewhat surrounded by mystery. This page provides some useful background information regarding the fees that architects charge.
2017 TYPICAL ARCHITECT COSTS
While fees vary considerably between architects, the following can be used as a rough guide for an affordable-end architect:
Municipal Approved Building Plans: R520/m²
Architectural site work: R520/m²
Note that most architects charge on a sliding fee scale that charges as a percentage of building cost. This is a practice that has been standard for some time, but may be less practical then a square meter rate.
HOW MUCH SHOULD AN ARCHITECT COST?
Consider that a good quality floor finish costs R500/m². Then consider the importance of the correct design of the house as a whole.
Consider that a house costs from R12 000/m² to R20 000/m² to build in an Estate around Cape Town. R1040/m² is therefore between 5% and 8% of the building cost. Then consider that Estate agents charge 6% - 8% to sell the house afterwards, including the price of the land and not only the cost of the building. This tells us that architects are working hard for less fees than other professions.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE SITEWORK PHASE?
In the past sitework included administration of the building contract, but this has increasingly become a seperate profession performed by a project manager with experience from quantity surveying, building or legal side. Normally now, the architect concentrates on delivering advice on site, attending to detail and materials and providing on-site consultation to see that the plan has been understood correctly.