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RE: Design fee guidelines

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I agree with you 100%.

However, lets suppose that I'm in a socialist type situation where I do
not have competition and I have only one client.  Since I do not have
competition, my fees are dictated to me by this client.  I would like to
know if the fees I have mentioned in my earlier post are too low, too
high, or just right for a capitalist environment.  What are my
colleagues doing to survive?  BTW, the fees I mentioned in my earlier
post do include construction administration (shop drawing review, site
observations as required, answering contractor questions, solving
problems that arise in the field, etc.).

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Allen, S.E. [mailto:Bill(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, November 02, 1998 2:40 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Design fee guidelines

The following response is merely my opinion and is not intended to
offend or
flame anyone in particular..

One of the reasons you feel "lucky" to get 1% is that either you are
to do it for that low of fee or your colleagues (competition) are
willing to
do it for that fee. Hypothetically, If NO qualified structural engineer
would touch a project for less than, say 2%, then you could get 2% on a
regular basis.

We are our own worst (business) enemy and we would rather worry about
graphically beautiful drawings (with shading), ponder rigid diaphram vs.
flexible and then decide to do the analysis both ways, perform a time
history analysis when it isn't really required, etc.

We deserve exactly what we get.

Bill Allen

-----Original Message-----
From: Mike Brown [mailto:mike.brown(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, November 02, 1998 12:38 PM
To: 'seaint(--nospam--at)'
Subject: RE: Design fee guidelines

I'm interested in this information as well.  I have seen in the '97
Means for Building Construction Cost Data that the structural
engineering fees are 1% min. to 2.5% max. of the project cost.  But I
got to be honest, I work for an A&E firm and we're lucky if we get 1% of
the construction cost (Usually only for complex jobs like hangers and
pavilions).  Usually we're only budgeted for 10% of the total design
fees set by our architects.  This usually amounts to about 0.6% of
construction costs.

Of course the best way to determine structural design fees or any fees
for that matter is based on past experience for similar projects.

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Coburn [mailto:bauengrg(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, November 02, 1998 12:03 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Design fee guidelines

We are attempting to find design fee guidelines with fees determined as
a percentage of the construction costs, as designers, construction
manager and/or design/build.  Obviously a  percentage on a parking
structure would be higher than an residential or commercial structure.
Can anyone suggest a source for this type of information?  Naturally
these percentages could not be project specific and will be used as a
guideline/starting point only.
We would also be grateful to anyone who could provide information based
on past projects they have been involved with, i.e., cost for services
vs. cost of construction.  I can be reached directly at Bill(--nospam--at)
or Dan(--nospam--at)

Thanks in advance.