How much does a structural engineer cost?

two engineers

How much does a structural engineer cost?

*As of 2020 the figures in this article are correct.

Are you undertaking a renovation project or considering it? It could be an extension on your home or even changing your home’s layout? Either way it’s likely you will need the expertise of a structural engineer to determine the project’s viability. The dedicated expert will understand the changes you could make, as well as the materials required and the necessary steps in order to ensure the building is structurally sound and safe. In this article we will explain the costs to hire a structural engineer to aid your project. 

Cost of a structural engineer.

Depending on the project’s size, scope of the work and size of the property or structure, the structural engineer’s fees will differ. You would normally hire a structural engineer to assess a property’s integrity. This is made up of a building survey and/or drawing up measurements for the specifics of the project i.e. a loft conversion. These figures then run parallel to the work of an architect and subsequent aesthetic design work.

As a starting point, a structural engineer would typically charge between £50 and £90 for an hours work. However, this fee is likely to be higher if you are based in London or the engineer works for a large firm as opposed to being an independent contractor.

Producing a building survey or such similar tasks, the properties size will control how long an assessment would take and costs associated with the project. A building survey will have varying costs associated with it, however, typically these will range from £200 for a small flat to around £2,000 for a large detached home.

At the same time, when writing plans for such works, e.g. assessing foundations for projects  such as an extension or deciding the necessary joist size, the scale of the individual project will dictate the overall costs. Bigger projects could need several site visits with multiple versions of drawings, this will increase the price of the project. The cost is project dependent, but as a baseline, a simple home renovation such as single-storey extension on level ground could incur a structural engineer’s fee of circa £400. However, for a larger project with more complexities, e.g. a two-storey extension on uneven ground, could end up incurring fees upwards of £2,000. 

How much are building regulatory fees?

Typically, a structural engineer’s preliminary plans will be submitted to building regulators, this is something that costs, but will be included in the overall fees of your structural engineer. You will be able to see the price of this on your itemised receipt. A building regulator adheres to standards which all buildings must comply with. Your local authority is the main body responsible in maintaining these high standards. Therefore, any project which changes the structure of a property or building will first be inspected and approved if said project meets all the requirements.

In order to gain approval from building regulations your full plans are required along with a building notice submission. This type of submission is more typical of a simpler and more routine job which only consists of a basic application form and a small fee. Then, when the work is carried out, the project will need to be approved by either a qualified inspector or by the local authority’s building control department itself. Each fee is dependent on the overall project size, the number of visits by an inspector and which local building authority is involved. However, the rough figures suggest the application submission fee to be between £150-£250 with an additional inspection cost, which is between £200, where only a single visit is necessary, up to £600 where several visits and checks are needed.

How much does planning permission cost?

Each cost is typically invoiced separately, in particular the cost associated with applying for planning permission. Applying for planning permission is necessary for bigger projects or for several structural changes simultaneously. The fee for a planning application is set as standard, to £462 for a brand new property and £206 for an extension. As always, these fees are dependent on each unique situation meaning the cost could be higher… if planning permission is approved on the certain conditions, you may have to resubmit the application proving the conditions have been met. 

Need more information? 

A free quote is easy to obtain! Your local structural engineer can provide you with a comprehensive quote at a time that suits you.

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