We Listen, we
Understand and THEN we Design
Extending your home, dealing with the local
authority and builders can be a daunting experience. We see our role as taking
the stress out of the process and making the whole experience exciting and
The process passes through well-defined stages and
you will be involved most of the time. Initially we will sit down with you and
your family to help develop your brief. We will listen to your ideas and
suggest other approaches for you to consider.
If you do not have a current set of suitable
drawings of your house we will need to prepare a measured survey. This should
not take more than three or four hours on site and does not cause any
We will then prepare sketch designs, maybe
freehand, maybe on a computer. These schemes will include new ideas whilst
incorporating your brief, show how the plans, sections, elevations and site
We will meet you several times using these sketches
as a basis for discussions and develop the concept to a final design. When the
scheme meets your expectations we will prepare drawings and submit for planning
Each Local Planning Authority may require
additional information. These include but are not limited to Design and Access
Statements, Sustainability Statements, Energy Statements, Sustainable Drainage
Systems, Tree Surveys, Arboricultural reports, Landscape Schemes, Heritage
Statements, Listed Building Appraisals, Protected Species Surveys, Ecological
Surveys, Flood Risk Assessments, Planning Obligation heads of agreements,
Affordable Housing Statement and Community Infrastructure Levy Assessments. We
will be able to advise you on whether any of these are required.
A planning Approval will usually come with
conditions attached. Some of these will need to be discharged before work
commences. We will guide you through this process
When the approval is received we start the
technical drawings. The initial information, which may require the employment
of a structural engineer, incorporates the structural elements as required by
your local authority. When all the thermal, safety, access etc details are
collated we submit a package of information for Building Regulation approval.
The second phase of the technical information
involves the selection of finishes, sanitary fittings, the disposition of electrical
outlets, radiators etc. We offer guidance, can prepare ‘mood and material
boards’ and generally help during this activity.
We then send the complete set of data about your
project to contractors for a competitive price which has to be returned on a specific
date. We check the quotations and advise our clients of the best option.
With your approval we prepare a tried and tested
building contract which you and the contractors sign. As well as the Contract
Sum, the document sets out start and finishing dates, insurance liabilities,
timing of payments etc. Our role now is to manage the Contract (we are not
acting as Project managers), making sure that the contractor observes the
terms, uses the correct materials, achieves a high standard of workmanship and
meets the programme.
We hold regular site quality meetings, to which you
are invited, and check monthly valuations prepared by the contractor. When
satisfied with the value, we issue a Certificate, deducting a percentage (which
forms a retention fund) and it is presented to you for payment.
On completion we prepare a snagging list and after
the contractor returns and remedies any latent defects three months later,
agree the final account and certify the release of the retention fund.
Then it’s up to you and your family
to enjoy your investment in your improved home!