Welcome to Crafers Building Design


Since 1992 Crafers Building Design has been designing and drafting plans for new homes and additions for council planning and building approval throughout the Adelaide Hills, city suburbs, Fleurieu Penninsula and Kangaroo Island. 

At Crafers Building Design we design what you want the way you want it. We provide you with over 27 years of experience and offer you advice and suggestions as you approve your plans as they progress to completion.

We make life easy by organising everything you need to get council planning and building approval. We are also committed to saving you money. Speak to us before you start preparing your plans because we may be able to save you thousands of dollars in unnecessary expenses. At Crafers Building Design, we are on your side.

If you have any questions, call us at (08) 8339-3477 or email us at


Click on the links below to see some of our work.



A common question often asked is what is the difference between an Architect and a Building Designer? One answer is price. Most architects charge a percentage of the total cost of your project, usually between 8 to 15 %. That means if your project costs $250,000 to build and the architect charges 10%, the architect’s fee will be about $25,000. A Building Designer such as myself charges an hourly rate of $75 per hour + gst. On average the total cost to produce a similar set of plans for full council planning and building approval, is less than $2500.

That $2500 does not include the engineer, surveyor or 6-star energy report. An engineer’s report is needed mainly for a soil test, concrete slabs and structural steel. On average an engineer’s report is about $1000. A surveyor is usually needed if the house is located on a hill or sloping site. The surveyor is needed to produce a contour plan which shows the ground levels. On average a contour plan is also about $1000. A 6-star energy report determines the type of insulation and glass needed in the new project. We can get this done for you for about $250.

All the above is required by the council for final building approval. Of course, the cost of the above rates depends on the complexity of the job. At Crafers Building Design each job is different so the above rates will vary on each job and is based on averages. Before work begins, we sign a contract which explains everything in detail. Before we engage any outside professional services, we get a quote first which is then sent to you for your approval. You are free to use anyone else if you have your own contacts. Once work begins you are kept in the loop with all relevant correspondence.

We work at your pace, so you are never under any pressure, unless there are council deadlines. You are free to postpone the project at any time. We encourage you to seek further advice from friends, builders and suppliers so that we make the best and most economical decisions. Once the plans are about halfway done, you can lodge them with the council as a Planning Application. At that stage you can send copies of these plans to builders to get a rough idea on the cost. We do not want to finish a set of plans until you are confident that the construction costs are within budget. We can help you there too and suggest a couple local builders. At Crafers Building Design you have the freedom to take your plans to as many builders as you wish to get as many quotes as you want.

We are committed to saving you time, money and hassle as we guide you through the complex maze of council procedures. We have done this over two-thousand times, so at Crafers Building Design you can relax and focus on your new project. If you wish we can meet here in the office and together we can start designing your project on the computer. That way we can ask each other lots of questions and by the end of the first meeting I can print off the preliminary plan for you to take home to change and discuss with the family or associates.

Another difference between an Architect and a Building Designer is that an Architect often supervises the entire project. My job is to produce a set of plans only, plans that you and the council have approved. These plans are used by the builder to produce a quote and to use on-site during construction. Even though we do not supervise the project like an Architect, we are still there with you during construction if you have any problems or questions.

Crafers Building Design is ideal for owner-builders and families working on a tight budget. We are also ideal for builders who want to outsource their drafting and design services. We have designed multi-million-dollar homes and multi-unit housing developments, yet we also specialise in designing decks, carports, pergolas and anything else that requires council approval.

Finally, there is a difference between an Architect, Building Designer and a Draftsman, or Draftsperson. A Drafter knows how to draw plans but is not yet a designer. Instead a Draftsman is directed by the Architect or Building Designer. Though I’m not an architect I graduated with honours in architectural design in High School in 1974 before studying architecture and drafting at Santa Monica College and then at the Southern California Institute of Architecture. My passion is solar power, alternative energy and designing the next generation of solar-powered homes and self-sufficient off-grid communities based on more efficient and exciting 21st century architecture. In the meantime, I’m happy to be here at your service.


Jeff Yablon

Building Designer, Crafers Building Design