Draftsman vs Architect: Who to Choose When Renovating

May 12, 2022
architect vs draftsman

When you want to build your home, naturally, you consider many things, one of which is the draftsman vs. architect argument. 

People often assume both of these professionals do the same thing. They share certain similarities, but they have different training and limitations to their skills. 

While either of them can do one or a few things that the other person does, on a grand scale, they offer different services. 

It is common to see a draftsman and an architect playing the same or very similar roles in Australian real estate. 

These roles usually include drawing designs or preparing them with Computer-Aided designs and, in some cases working on the construction. 

However, they both require different experiences, education, and skills to become professionals in their chosen skills. 

Simply put, if either one wants to become the other, they cannot just make the switch based on the similarities of some of their tasks. 

They will have to take the training unique to the other profession to make that switch successfully because of the difference in their educational processes. 

Before we move on, let us understand who a draftsman is and what they do. 

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What is a draftsman?

Draftsman vs Architect

A draftsman, like an architect, creates designs and makes drawings for a building. 

They handle everything about design, from the technical schematics to the material drawings. 

However, that is where it ends. They do not understand the more complex aspects of designing a building and would often stop at the technical conception stage. 

For instance, if you need changes done to a design that is already in motion, a draftsman may not be the best professional to hire.  

As you are contemplating all the possible ways to implement changes to the existing design, it may be hard for a building draftsman to handle such complexity. 

They will draw your home and follow through with the construction process, but they severely lack the creative know-how of a house design on paper. 

Difference between a draftsman and an architect 

When arguing for draftsman vs. architect, you need to understand what makes these two professionals different from each other, and there is a list. 

Here are some ways how a draftsman and an architect are different. 

Draftsman vs Architect


A draftsman spends less time studying designs than an architect. For context, an architect’s average time studying their craft is between 5 to 7 years. 

On the other hand, an architectural draftsperson would spend between 3 to 4 years. Note that this does not make the draftsman less educated than the architect or less qualified to do designs in any way. 

However, in those ‘extra’ years they spend honing their craft, the architect adds more things to what they already know. 

The draftsman would learn the basics of design and other important aspects and be done with the training, while the design and renovation architects would go on to seek the complexities in such designs and how to simplify them and make them more practical.

This difference in education is why some people erroneously believe that the draftsman would not understand or carry out a design right. 

A draftsman is educated, trained, and has experience designing a home; however, when it comes to the draftsman vs. architect argument, the architect is more educated. 


Draftsman vs Architect

In Australia, a draftsman’s duties begin and end with the design. 

However, in some cases, we have draftsmen who stay around during construction to see if the builders have any problems. 

Nevertheless, once the design has entered the construction stage, the draftsman’s job is completed. 

The draftsman will create a clear draft for the builders to follow. They will pay much attention to the draft, ensuring there is no confusion when the building starts. 

On the other hand, architects have responsibilities until the end of the construction. 

Even while the construction is going on, they are often still contemplating the design and thinking of how it could be revised or adjusted to look and work better. 

Since they work hand-in-hand with the builders, they could develop feasible ways to make the building better and more practical. 

An architect will be with you from your planning stage to conception, design, documentation, contracts, and even help with managing the project. 

An architect does not just draw the plans for your building; they hold your hand to help you ensure that your building’s design becomes a reality. 

Regarding responsibilities, the draftsman vs. architect argument shows how different they are from each other even when they have some similar roles. 

For example, if an architect for home renovation does not have the time to draw a feasible plan for the design, he can get a draftsman to help with the basic technical aspect of drawing the plan. 

After that, the architect can now settle into more complex and creative parts of redesigning the home. 

Draftsman vs. architect-who to choose?

Draftsman vs Architect

The draftsman vs. architect conversation aims to help prospective house owners in Australia know who to choose when they want to start building their homes. 

Before choosing between an architect and a draftsman, you must first understand what you want from both of them. 

For example, do you need a plan that your builder can use, or will you prefer a guide throughout the process? 

If the answer to the former is yes, you need a draftsman, and if the answer to the latter is yes, you need an architect. 

You should also know that a draftsman costs relatively less than an architect, and for obvious reasons. 

The draftsman should cost you around 2000 AUD, while an architect would cost you around 6000 AUD. 

The draftsman vs. architect conversation will be mainly designed around what you want to achieve and what you can pay. 

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