I'm ready to build my first house. Spent 1.1 mil on a block of about 8000 sq ft and have been trolling the architecture mags etc. for inspiration. I hate most of what I've seen. Found one design I really liked - it won an award, quite a prestigous one in my country. The design isn't suitable for my purposes but I thought hell, this guy has guts and vision, he could be the one for me.
So I called him up and we had a meeting on site. I gave him the dream brief - a list of accomodation I need, a few guidelines about light, materials etc. that I like - and told him he could go nuts with the design. I want a house that might win an award. A house some people will hate, but I'll drive up to every night and think, man, that is some piece of design.
I gave him a budget of 800K and he's come back with a quote of 15% plus plus plus (subconsultants like gardener and town planner, courier fees, variations etc.) So that's $120K+ for a resi project - to design, spec, tender and administrate. He will do concepts for $5K.
I tend to think he's gone for the jugular because I flattered him for his award. He has a few other designs on his resume (he's probably been practising about 10 years), but few are finished yet. They seem generally OK. he works with 2 partners, one of whom I met. They talked the talk.
I have a commercial project going at the moment where I've been quoted a lump sum that amounts to about 8%, for the same scope of works. Same guy is doing my bush retreat for about 5% but the cost will run over so he'll be up for more like 4%. He's competent but his designs aren't outstanding. On this project he quoted about 8% as well.
So the short question - for an [apparently] innovative architect with one award and a short history, isn't 15% a bit ambitious? Would I insult him by querying the rate? If I pay him $5K for concepts but go no further, am I entitled to put his best ideas forward to the architect I eventually go with?
Ok so that was the long question.