We specialise in all aspects of residential and commercial property including:
* One off houses.
* Extensions and remodelling of existing houses.
* Restoration and alterations to listed and historic Buildings.
* Multiple housing.
* Office interiors and refurbishment.
* Industrial buildings.
Guidance for Clients
Over many years we have developed procedures to achieve our clients requirements. These procedures and our experience ensure that the whole process is as rewarding and exciting as possible.
We are able to tailor our services to meet each individual client’s requirements and budget.
Initially we will meet with prospective clients to discuss their requirements and will subsequently prepare a written record of the brief together with a fee proposal. This initial involvement is undertaken without charge.
The Design Process
If appointed we will generally prepare a measured survey of the property or will arrange for a survey to be carried out by others. This existing information is used to prepare initial sketch designs and a meeting will subsequently be held with the client to review these designs and to agree how to proceed. Usually several design options will be produced as this is often the point at which the client becomes able to clarify their requirements and to fully understand the possibilities.
Depending on our clients’ requirements our appointment can include all or some of the following;
1. Outline Proposals.
2. Sketch Designs.
3. Final Design.
4. Planning Submission.
5. Detail Design.
6. Building Regulations Application.
7. Building Specification, Schedule of Works and Detailed Construction Drawings
8. Competitive Tender or Negotiation.
9. Contract Administration and Site Inspection.
10. Completion and Maintenance Advice.
Other Members of the Design Team
Most projects require the involvement of other consultants as well as the architect.
A Structural Engineer is appointed at an early stage to provide a structural design and calculations for the Building Regulations application and for construction purposes. The Structural Engineer’s design will be integrated and co-ordinated with the architect’s construction drawings.
On larger projects it is advisable to appoint a Quantity Surveyor to provide an independent assessment of the project costs.
Other consultants are often required depending on the circumstances of the project and these can include the following:
* Services Engineers
* Planning Consultants
* Party Wall Surveyors
* Lighting Designers
* Landscape Designers
* Construction, Design and Management Coordinators
We can suggest suitable consultants who we have worked with for many years. Other consultants are generally appointed directly by the client.
Most larger design schemes involving an extension to a property will require planning permission. We will advise you whether a planning application is required and if any other statutory applications are necessary. We have submitted many successful planning applications and will use our experience to maximise the chances of success.
Construction Drawings and Tender Documents
We pride ourselves on producing detailed and comprehensive construction drawings that clarify the project requirements so that the contractor is able to construct with confidence. Where appointed to do so we will also prepare a detailed specification of the project to clarify materials and products to be used and will provide a schedule of the works itemising the work required. We believe that this attention to detail avoids problems on site and helps to prevent cost overruns.
The Tender Process
Generally we recommend that most projects should be tendered to obtain competitive prices. We encourage clients to use contractors who can demonstrate high levels of quality, familiarity with the type of project and who have good references. There are however some situations in which a standard competitive tender may not be the right solution to appoint a contractor for a project. We will advise on the alternatives where necessary. We have a good working relationship with many contractors.
We can administer the contract between the client and the contractors and provide advice on the form of contract to be used. We certify how much the contractor should be paid each month and carry out regular site inspections to ensure that the project is being constructed as designed. Any issues which arise on site are resolved by the architect giving the client the confidence that their project has been completed to a high standard.