Launch Slideshow

How much do you make?

How much do your peers in the architectural profession make, and how does it compare to what you make?

How much do you make?

How much do your peers in the architectural profession make, and how does it compare to what you make?

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/01_salary_tcm20-182798.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale. Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Salary-wise, it's a steady climb from intern to licensed architect, then a leap of about $30,000 up to management level. The median base salary of all our 1,392 respondents is $88,000.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/02_salary_tcm20-182806.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale. Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Salary-wise, it's a steady climb from intern to licensed architect, then a leap of about $30,000 up to management level. The median base salary of all our 1,392 respondents is $88,000.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/03_salary_tcm20-182814.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale. Infrographics by Catalogtree

    The bar chart couldn't be clearer: Work at a bigger firm and you'll likely take home a bigger paycheck. Interestingly, though, the most significant jump in pay is from sole proprietor to small (2-19 perosn) firm. There's strength even in low numbers it seems.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/04_salary_tcm20-182822.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Whether you're an intern or an architect or work at a small, midsized, or large firm may not affect your salary much. But at the principal level and above, large-firm employees can earn 17 percent more than their small-firm counterparts.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/05_salary_tcm20-182830.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    File under News You Already Know: Male respondents earn a higher median salary than female respondents. Men are also more likely to be licensed and/or in management positions, raising the question--which comes first, the chicken or the egg? Young people, male and female, should see a glimmer of hope here: Salaries take a big jump between 25-34 and 35-44, right in time for you to have kids and spend all your money on them.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/06_salary_tcm20-182838.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Unlicensed designers, steer clear of the South Atlantic region ...

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/07_salary_tcm20-182846.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    No surprises here: The longer you work the more they pay you.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/08_salary_tcm20-182854.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    The vast majority of you get some type of bonus, and employees of large firms may be offered a menu of them. At all types of fims, though, bonuse for passing the LEED exam or the ARE, or for the completion of five years' service, are relatively rare.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/09_salary_tcm20-182862.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Bonuses by Types (cont.)

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/10_salary_tcm20-182870.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Maybe you didn't get that corner office. But stay in your current job and you'll earn more over time, especially if you're a project manager.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/11_salary_tcm20-182878.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Happily, most respondents do have health insurance. When it comes to additional benefits--dental insurance, flexible spending, and disability, for example--small-firm employees fare worse than their large-firm peers do.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/12_salary_tcm20-182886.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Benefits (cont.)

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/13_salary_tcm20-182894.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    The smaller the firm, the happier the architect. Despite earning higher salaries across job titles, large-firm employees report lower satisfaction with their pay than respondents who work in both midsized (20-99 person) and small (2-19 person) firms. On all other measures, sole practictioners report the highest job satisfaction.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/14_salary_tcm20-182902.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Hmm. Taking pride in one's employer, believing that it cares about its people and that it rewards them based on merit--these feelings seem to decrease as the size of the firm grows. On the other hand, large-firm respondents are more likely to describe their firms as competitive and industry leaders.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/15_salary_tcm20-182910.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Note: Marketing, IT, and other support staff responding in statistically insignificant numbers.

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/16_salary_tcm20-182918.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

  • http://www.architectmagazine.com/Images/17_salary_tcm20-182926.jpg

    600

    Research by Neil Karlin and Elda Vale; Infrographics by Catalogtree

    Note: Some respondents did not indicate their gender.

If you’ve still got a job, and we hope you do, 2009 may well be the year to count your blessings: a regular paycheck, health insurance (perhaps), and someplace besides your couch to go in the morning. Even so, work anxieties and office politics haven’t gone away. They’re still there, just bubbling a little deeper below the surface. The guy down the hall feels unappreciated; your cubicle mate knows she’s underpaid. And how did that dolt from the branch office get a promotion?

In this, our third salary survey—but the first that draws exclusively on our own readership—we present the results from an online survey that 1,392 of you completed in December and January. (We e-mailed a random sample of readers, promising that for every completed survey, we’d donate $2 to Architecture for Humanity—a promise we stand by.) All respondents included in this survey are full-time employees of firms that do primarily nonresidential architecture.

And what did we find? On the whole, you’re making decent money, although it’s true that a high percentage of principals and other management responded to the survey. The big question, of course, is: What will you be making next year, and the year after, given the economy?

Let us know—we’ll be asking. And read on …