Architects general work on a scale as a percentage of the build costs. The percentage falls as the costs get higher.
There used to be an official scale, which many architects still use to drive their pricing, I found an example here.
If we assume a generous £180,000 build cost then the fee would be around 8.5%, or £15,300 so you seem spot on the schedule. Obviously there can be room to negotiate on this.
However, there is then a recommended break down of the fees into outline proposals, design, build information, tendering, site operations etc. I think if you plan to use MBC or similar then they might well provide a lot of the production drawings, warrant work etc and thus you should be looking to pay less than the full fee. I would guess around 20-30%, but of course the architect may still fee that they are involved and they want to charge for it.
It may be that you are really looking for a design only contract and you can then hand this over to a timber frame company, this should be much cheaper and is not what you have been quoted for.
I felt the cost was outrageous initially when my architect quoted the fee, and I am paying quite a bit below the schedule as I have known him for over 20 years, but over time I have seen he is putting in a lot of hours. Although the schedule takes this into account I do wonder if perhaps on quite a modest house the architect feels it isn't great business for him. A £500,000 build would attract a fee of £36,000 according to the scale. There isn't that much more work in terms of working with the planning department, detailing construction, filing the warrant etc.
Alex is right, my architect charges £60 an hour for hourly work. I suspect this fee would work out at way less than this on an hourly basis even though it is a lot of money. My architect reckons that after overheads he takes home around a third of his hourly rate and gets fed up with people like doctors and lawyers complaining about it when they charge themselves out at even higher prices.
Edited by AliG, 24 November 2015 - 08:45 PM.