What we do

We believe great architecture should be accessible and for your everyday life. So whether your project is large or small, it will have heart and will utilise common sense building solutions to relate to the people using the space.

Our particular specialities lie in creating sustainable site-specific homes and bespoke renovations that frame your everyday and give families room to grow.

We also design and document community projects, residential new builds, alterations, customised interiors, from both small to large commercial and residential projects.

We can increase the character and soul of any build we undertake,with most budgets in mind. We think living and/or working in something unique and out of the ordinary is a better experience for the occupants. And it’s what we enjoy designing too.

Donnell & Day Architecture is positioned neither at the cheap nor the extremely expensive end of the building spectrum. We are unique, offering professional tailored services to suit your scope and budget. We take client care seriously, and can be there for you through your project’s life cycle to bring your dreams to reality.



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Working with us is a truly collaborative experience. Understanding our clients and their objectives is a very important part of the process and is fundamental to what we do. That’s why we place a high emphasis on listening, asking the right questions and enjoying quality discussion, to advance our clients’ goals and ultimately design architecture that truly fit their lives.

The highly personalised and personal experience quickly translates into trust, where we often oversee the entire project. With our hands on approach, attention to detail, and project care, our fees represent great value. We are proud of consistently increasing the value of our clients’ properties.

We can either handle your entire project from end to end, or join where you need us. Here is a list of our architecture services:

FEASIBILITY STUDIES: ideas for development (eg. pre-purchase)

PRELIMINARY DESIGN: big picture concepts and ideas for contemporary new builds and sensitive renovations. Sustainable design that makes the most of the light, site and environment. Detail and outline specification sufficient for a preliminary costing.

DEVELOPED DESIGN: detailed design, including kitchens, bathrooms, materials, sample boards, colours and furniture design.

RESOURCE CONSENT: reports and drawings for resource consent application. Meetings with planners.

WORKING DRAWINGS: building consent drawings, consultant co-ordination, specifications, cabinetry, detailing, etc.

TENDER DOCUMENTATION: tender to builders to gain competitive pricing (this can be fixed if required).

CONTRACT OBSERVATION AND ADMINISTRATION: administration of contract and certification of payments, site observation and site meetings, confirming that what is built is in accordance with the contract documentation.

1. How much does it cost to work with an architect?

We tailor our fees to suit your project. You can either engage our services from beginning to end, or you may just need some preliminary ideas. A general guide for a FULL architecture service, for a new build residential project (from design right through to site administration) could be 10.5% to 12.5% of the build, depending on the value and complexity of the project. Renovations tend to add another 1.5% on top of this.

2. How long will it take?

Developing a project from design through to documentation depends on its complexity, the council approval processes required, and the time for you to mull over ideas. Contact us for a time estimate specific to your project.

3. Do you have a builder who could build it for me?

We recommend experienced Master builders and Certified builders who can provide you with a 10 year warranty for the building work. A tender process based on thorough documentation can obtain a firm, competitive price for the build that is not full of 'tags' and 'pc sums'. The best quality is obtained when we are engaged to assist with any queries that arise on site and to oversee the build.

4. Is there a minimum value of project that you work on?

At Donnell & Day we work with both small and large budgets, interiors, renovations, and new builds. Projects with construction build values over $300,000 + GST will benefit from the added value that an architect can provide.  We are interested in projects that have heart and soul, where quality and innovative design and thinking is paramount to you. 

5. So how do we start?

We offer a free face-to-face chat when we can talk about how we can work with you to achieve your specific building goals and then tailor a quote for you to approve. We work on projects throughout the North Island so we can also have a Skype meeting with you to get the ball rolling.