10 Highest-paying Architectural Jobs with Salaries -
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10 Highest-paying Architectural Jobs with Salaries


In a world where design meets functionality, architecture is the artistic cornerstone of our built environment. From soaring skyscrapers that touch the clouds to serene spaces that foster creativity, architects wield the power to shape how we experience the world around us. As the demand for innovation and sustainability surges, there’s a constant demand for skilled architects, leading to numerous highest-paying architectural jobs.



The architecture industry offers boundless opportunities, catering to various passions and specializations. Today, we uncover some of the highest-paying architectural jobs with salaries and their respective roles.


Who is an Architect?

An architect is a licensed professional specializing in designing and planning built structures. Beyond creating blueprints and floor plans, architects envision functional, aesthetically pleasing, and safe spaces for occupants. When developing designs, they consider various factors such as building codes, environmental impact, structural integrity, and client needs.



Architects work closely with clients, engineers, contractors, and other stakeholders to bring their designs to life, overseeing the entire construction process from concept to completion. They deeply understand spatial relationships, materials, and construction techniques. As such, they can create innovative and sustainable solutions that meet practical and artistic objectives.


Highest-paying Architectural Jobs

1. Architectural Technician

Annual average salary: $62,000

Architectural technicians work as an intermediary between architects and construction managers to communicate the intricacies of a proposed building’s designs to the construction teams. They rarely help design a building but focus more on creating the guidelines for its construction. In addition, they possess an associate degree or a credential from a technical school.


The best way to secure an architectural technician job is by earning a degree in architectural technology. A bachelor’s degree can help you land entry-level positions. In contrast, a master’s degree may open the door to more senior roles within the field. Consider taking courses at community colleges and technical schools, which offer programs specifically designed for aspiring architects.


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2. Architectural Drafter

Annual average salary: $58,500

An architectural drafter works on an architectural project, drafting drawings of a project’s plans. Generally, architecture plans have in-depth 2D drawings that are easy to understand, and drafters perfect this style to provide drawing services for architectural project managers.


They may work in various architectural styles and purposes, though they can specialize in residential or commercial buildings based on their years of experience. The education requirements for this position include a bachelor’s degree in architecture and at least two years of experience working as an architectural drafter.


3. Architectural Designer

Annual average salary: $65,700

Architectural design is an entry-level position at many architecture firms. The designer can work with computer software to help draft and design ideas for building projects under the supervision of fully certified architects at their establishment. They earn work experience and mentorship in this position while pursuing certifications to become licensed architects.


With these certifications, they can develop their architectural design. Architectural designers may work for architectural companies, general contractors, and businesses that sell building materials. They also work for government agencies and nonprofits.


4. Architectural Historian

Annual average salary: $69,500

An architectural historian studies architecture history and may work in academics or write about a specific period of architectural style. They can work in schools, museums, archives, or as independent researchers. In addition, they may travel to view historical architectural sites.


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They usually have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in architecture, art history, or a related field. This gives them the skills to identify standard techniques and themes throughout the history of architecture.


5. Urban Planner

Annual average salary: $75,200

An urban planner develops ideas for public lands and considers how the public can most efficiently and enjoyably use spaces in their community. To become an urban planner, you likely need a degree in engineering or architecture. Urban planning includes revitalizing urban spaces or developing new land in metropolitan areas.


This job requires a combination of technical knowledge, critical thinking skills, and communication skills. Most urban planners have a master’s degree in urban planning or a related field, such as architectural engineering. However, you can also get a job as an urban planner with only a bachelor’s degree and years of experience in the field.


6. Industrial Architect

Annual average salary: $98,100

An industrial architect designs structures for industrial use, such as factories or industrial parks. When planning, these architects consider their client’s industry and the materials the client manufactures in the building. They also consider the client’s space, access, and machinery needs, present their ideas, and use communication skills when interacting with clients and structural engineers.


7. Landscape Architect

Annual average salary: $73,500

Landscape architects design structures incorporating plants and vegetation, such as parks, gardens, walkways, and playgrounds. The architect creates a concept for space, designs it using digital architectural software, and presents their plans to clients for approval. They consider what plants thrive in specific environments and what plants complement one another to create appealing spaces for people to enjoy.


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Employers prefer that prospective landscape architects have a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture. Most of these architects have a minimum of two years of experience in the field before applying. However, some companies will hire entry-level landscape architects with a few years of experience.


8. Architectural Project Manager

Annual average salary: $84,800

An architectural project manager oversees the design and development of building plans. They estimate the costs involved in executing the project and monitor the designs to ensure they meet the client’s wants. They also manage contractors to ensure the designs are within the capabilities of their construction team. Project managers consult with clients and oversee production schedules to ensure they can complete the projects before the deadline.


9. Commercial Architect

Annual average salary: $99,000

A commercial architect designs and develops ideas for commercial spaces. They may work for architectural firms or businesses specializing in specialized management. They create designs considering people’s movement and the building’s purpose, such as a shopping mall or an apartment complex. Commercial architects draw the designs, choose the materials, and present them to the clients and local agencies for approval.


10. Historic Preservation Architect

Annual average salary: $95,100

A historic preservation architect is one of the highest-paid architects, evaluates structures, and preserves old buildings with architectural and historical importance. They assess the value of a building according to its period, material quality, and condition. They can design renovations and make repairs that preserve the original design while improving the longevity of the building.


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This job requires at least an undergraduate degree in architecture and experience working with historic buildings. In some states, a preservation architect may need to be licensed as a professional. This job is ideal for someone who has a passion for history and loves working on projects that have historical value.


Preservation architects work for a variety of employers, including governments and nonprofits. They may also work for construction companies or other professionals in the building industry who need help restoring buildings that have historical significance.



Architecture offers a diverse range of career paths, each with its unique opportunities and rewards. As discussed in this article, the top highest-paying architectural jobs contain a broad spectrum of specialties, from designing cutting-edge skyscrapers to preserving historical landmarks.


While the salaries are undoubtedly attractive in these careers, it’s important to remember that a successful architectural job goes beyond the paycheck. It’s about passion, creativity, problem-solving, and leaving a lasting impact on the built environment. So, whether you’re drawn to the fast-paced world of urban design, the precision of healthcare facility planning, or the artistry of luxury residential design, you can pursue your interests and ambitions while reaping the financial benefits.


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