Initial Consultations & Pre-Purchase Consultations
If you are just beginning your project or perhaps thinking about doing something but not sure what, we can visit your property or plot and spend time discussing your requirements and the implications of these with you in an Initial Consultation. Or maybe you are thinking of buying a property and could do with a professional opinion on the place before you make an offer, which is where a Pre Purchase Consultation is useful. If you would like to book a consultation – please contact us and tell us about your project.
Preparation of the Brief
At the beginning of each project, its purpose and intensions, together with its schedule of accommodation, site and budget are formed in to what is know as a brief. The brief is something that we develop together with you, in order to be as thorough as possible from the outset, and becomes the backbone of your project.
Based on your agreed brief, initial decisions in the design stage will include formalising which rooms need to be adjacent, where stairs and fire escapes are needed, what external materials are preferred…there is a lot to consider! The Initial Design stage allows us to test the project and make sure we are on the right track in terms of your requirements and budget.
To Planning Application
The outline design is developed to show a defined appearance for the building, how fixtures and fittings are incorporated and how important details of construction are intended to work. We will check that the design proposals are within the brief parameters and in harmony with your stated objectives as regards quality, long term maintenance and performance. We will at this stage provide the information for design and layout to accompany your application to the local authority planning department. Legal information required by the local authority, e.g. site boundary, rights of access etc. should be referred to your lawyer. Your approval of the design drawings marks the completion of the primary design stages.
To Building Warrant Application
The application to the local authority for a building warrant requires the project architect and consulting engineer to submit drawings and calculations which show how proposals comply with the current Scottish Building Standards Regulations. Key construction details and building envelope specifications are defined at this stage and would form the basis for the more detailed construction documentation package.
Once the building warrant is issued and the technical drawings are complete, the way is clear to prepare the construction documentation in preparation for tendering the project to the potential contractors. There is a great deal of coordination and dialogue required for the drawings to reflect the client exact requirements, so expect revisions to the design.
The documents usually comprise the contract drawings, the specification of materials and components, the Bill of Quantities which can be prepared by a cost consultant (Quantity Surveyor) and the Conditions of Contract. The latter two are normally in a standard format and define the obligations of the parties to the contract, namely the client as the ’employer’ and the contractor.
The contractor consents to organise and direct the building work in accordance with his contractual obligations, and to supervise the work so as to achieve satisfactory completion on time. In traditional procurement, the chartered architect’s role as contract administrator is to make periodic site visits to inspect the general progress of the work, to issue instructions to the contractor and, if necessary, to reject obviously unsatisfactory work. During construction, we will report to you on matters of progress, on any unforeseen circumstances on site, any variations in budget or programme and will issue periodic certificates for stage payments due to the contractor.
Post Completion Work
Once the construction work is complete, there is a number of administrative duties that need addressed, particularly in obtaining the adequate completion certificates and certificates of design from the many different trades. There is also work involved in dealing with the contractor to address any defects or snagging items which may arise after the site completion.