THE PROCESS

Step 1: Initial visit

There is no charge for this visit at which we will discuss your building requirements and timelines in general terms. Broad advice will be given and, following the meeting, we will confirm our fee proposal to you in writing for your consideration.

Step 2: Survey visit

Following our appointment and before we can start designing it is usually necessary to prepare a survey of all or part of your site and buildings. We will carry out a measured survey and prepare drawings of your property as existing.

Step 3: Briefing and design

We will meet to discuss your project requirements in some detail. This will include confirmation of your space requirements and discussion of appropriate architectural styles and appearances. From this briefing we will prepare 'sketch designs' for your consideration. A final design will usually be achieved via an iterative process. Once the design is relatively settled a meeting with the planning department of the Local Authority may take place to gauge their reaction prior to making an application.

Step 4: Planning application

A planning application will be prepared on the basis of the approved design and will be submitted to the Local Authority. Although approval can never be guaranteed a planning application is usually determined within eight weeks of submission.

Certain smaller extensions may not require planning permission. In such cases we would normally apply to the Local Authority for a Lawful Development Certificate. Such applications also take eight weeks to determine.

Step 5: Building regulation application

A building regulation application will be prepared on the basis of the approved design and will be submitted to the Local Authority. Supporting information may be required from a structural engineer or other consultants and this will be coordinated into the design. We will advise on the need for other such consultants- who are normally appointed directly by the client. It is often sensible to delay work on a building regulation application until planning approval is granted. A building regulation application is usually determined within six weeks of submission.

Step 6: Contractor selection

We will advise on the selection of a builder capable of carrying out the proposed works. We will advise on the most appropriate forms of contract and will provide full construction and tender information. We will obtain quotations for the building works from a number of contractors. It is often sensible to delay the appointment of a contractor until building regulation approval is granted.

Step 7: Siteworks

We will administer all aspects of the building contract from site set-up through to completion of the works.

Some clients prefer to appoint us to building regulation approval stage only and to then make all further arrangements for procuring the building works themselves. If you intend to do this you should note that the information provided for a building regulation application is less than that normally needed to 'safely' enter into a building contract. This is because the building regulations do not cover all the works necessary to complete a building and because the terms of a building contract need to be separately agreed.

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