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      10-09-2007, 02:24 AM   #1
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Thumbs up OT: Building work/extensiom

Hi,

We've had a quote for a single story extension (garden room) on the back of our house. I can't be bothered going through it all with another builder, has anyone had something similar done? I'm thinking a very ballpark per sq metre figure would be handy ! I appreciate it would be very approximate.

Thanks

Paul
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      10-09-2007, 02:35 AM   #2
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All depends on the size of it. As its a small project the bigger it is, the less it costs (spreads the walls and footings cost over a larger area).

Whichever way you end up, make sure you get the contract right if nothing else!
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      10-09-2007, 03:16 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverbmwz3 View Post
Hi,

We've had a quote for a single story extension (garden room) on the back of our house. I can't be bothered going through it all with another builder, has anyone had something similar done? I'm thinking a very ballpark per sq metre figure would be handy ! I appreciate it would be very approximate.

Thanks

Paul
I work in the construction industry, but not domestic developments.

Cost shouldn't be your primary concern.

1. How well do you know the builder? Do you have references, personal recommendations etc .. if not get them.

2. How clear is the specification? This is where you are most likely to lose money and fall out. Make sure it's clear and well documented.

3. Are the contractual terms clear? Especially programme. Small builders routinely start new work without finishing off jobs .. which delays work on-site. Make sure you have a clear agreed programme and try not to provide them with any excuse for lateness.

For a single story extension I would reckon on anything between 1000-1500 a sq.m depending on the scope of works, accessibility and design.
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      10-09-2007, 03:44 AM   #4
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What do you do?

I do a bit of development too. This was my last little project ......
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      10-09-2007, 04:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by needforspeed View Post
I work in the construction industry, but not domestic developments.

Cost shouldn't be your primary concern.

1. How well do you know the builder? Do you have references, personal recommendations etc .. if not get them.

2. How clear is the specification? This is where you are most likely to lose money and fall out. Make sure it's clear and well documented.

3. Are the contractual terms clear? Especially programme. Small builders routinely start new work without finishing off jobs .. which delays work on-site. Make sure you have a clear agreed programme and try not to provide them with any excuse for lateness.

For a single story extension I would reckon on anything between 1000-1500 a sq.m depending on the scope of works, accessibility and design.
Thanks NFS. We started out looking at a conservatory but ran into issues as the house is in a conservation area and the plans were for upvc. Now we are thinking garden room. The company is a company that has done windows and conservatories for years but are branching out into garden rooms, sun rooms, orangeries etc. We would be detailing the specification to the nth degree with them. They've suggested what a payment schedule would be. It would be brick, with slate roof, and mostly glass and wood at the front (hence garden room). They would source it all and project manage using builders that do the footings and brick work for all their conservatories.

It would be around 18-20 sq. metres., with foundations potentially to 2m (our house has quite deep footings) and we were quoted 20k + VAT. When they first met us they quoted 35k (max) but that was with some fancy features (oak beams etc. etc.)

The only thing that concerned me was that he said he didn't like companies that come back for extras, so there would be none, unless they found something incredibly unusual when they were digging.....I think he gave some daft example like an tomb or something That and the fact he seems very keen and virtually said "tell me what spec you want for that price within reason" which made me think he has a decent margin in it. He is keen because they want to move the company in this direction so wants some work to show off (any pictures he has shown us of ideas have not been their work).

He even appears to be looking into how he can offer a 10 year guarantee on it (we were used to that from Conservatory companies).

Thanks guys, advice much appreciated.

What do you do exactly NFS? I've been meaning to ask that for some time!
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      10-09-2007, 04:09 AM   #6
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Who is dealing with the planning?

Are there any party wall issues (digging close to another wall could require a party wall award)?

Are you paying on valuation for works carried out?
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      10-09-2007, 04:24 AM   #7
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They would deal with planning & building regs.
No party wall issues (to my knowledge)
What does last question mean? The payment schedule is a deposit, more when groundworks completed, then a retention amount until we are happy.
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      10-09-2007, 04:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverbmwz3 View Post
Thanks NFS. We started out looking at a conservatory but ran into issues as the house is in a conservation area and the plans were for upvc. Now we are thinking garden room. The company is a company that has done windows and conservatories for years but are branching out into garden rooms, sun rooms, orangeries etc. We would be detailing the specification to the nth degree with them. They've suggested what a payment schedule would be. It would be brick, with slate roof, and mostly glass and wood at the front (hence garden room). They would source it all and project manage using builders that do the footings and brick work for all their conservatories.

It would be around 18-20 sq. metres., with foundations potentially to 2m (our house has quite deep footings) and we were quoted 20k + VAT. When they first met us they quoted 35k (max) but that was with some fancy features (oak beams etc. etc.)

The only thing that concerned me was that he said he didn't like companies that come back for extras, so there would be none, unless they found something incredibly unusual when they were digging.....I think he gave some daft example like an tomb or something That and the fact he seems very keen and virtually said "tell me what spec you want for that price within reason" which made me think he has a decent margin in it. He is keen because they want to move the company in this direction so wants some work to show off (any pictures he has shown us of ideas have not been their work).

He even appears to be looking into how he can offer a 10 year guarantee on it (we were used to that from Conservatory companies).

Thanks guys, advice much appreciated.

What do you do exactly NFS? I've been meaning to ask that for some time!
20K plus VAT doesn't seem to bad to me.

What worries me is the lack of specification. You need to have all that agreed up front. This doesn't have to be complex, just a list of everything that he has allowed for and maybe some drawings. Ideally you want this to include some description about quality as well.

In respect of the groundworks, I would establish in the specification document that he has allowed for 'all necessary works required to form suitable foundations' listing any exclusions which in this case would be 'underground obstructions'.

I doubt he will find a tomb, but the risk is that there may be some underground service conduits or drainage in the area, which he cannot predict and therefore would not want to take the financial risk on.

Suggest you also ask him what form the 'contract' will take. Does he simply want an order based on his written quotation?

In an ideal world you would be best served if he would agree to follow a JCT Minor Works Contract. In reality, if he's not familer with that form of contract you may simply scare him off.

As to what I do ... it's incredibly similar to Evil Diesel.
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      10-09-2007, 04:48 AM   #9
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Thanks. Who said anything about lack of specification? That is to be agreed prior to signing any contract however before you get into detailed specification you obviously need to get a ballpark figure to decide if you want to go ahead ? No point working up a detailed specification only to find it is 40k and way over budget - then everyone's time is wasted. We've discussed approximate spec but not detailed, that's next stage. I just didn't want to be ripped off, but in a way although this company hasn't done exactly this before I think that could be a plus point as they are wanting to go in this direction and will want something to show off.

What does evil diesel do ? Please don't say something incredibly similar to what you do !
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      10-09-2007, 04:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverbmwz3 View Post
They would deal with planning & building regs.
No party wall issues (to my knowledge)
What does last question mean? The payment schedule is a deposit, more when groundworks completed, then a retention amount until we are happy.
The 'valuation' principle means that you pay for the works that have actually been done at a given time. Rather than simply a 'stage payment', which would be an arbitary amount that doesn't necessarily reflect the value of the completed works.

1. Confirm that they will obtain planning consent or written confirmation that this will be 'permitted development' prior to commencement (and payment of any cash).

2. I'd want to have at least 50% of the cost as a final payment, only due once the works are complete and a building regulations completion certificate has been produced.

How much is the deposit? I wouldn't want to pay any significant amount up front. No deposit at all would be ideal.
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      10-09-2007, 04:52 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverbmwz3 View Post
Thanks. Who said anything about lack of specification? That is to be agreed prior to signing any contract however before you get into detailed specification you obviously need to get a ballpark figure to decide if you want to go ahead ? No point working up a detailed specification only to find it is 40k and way over budget - then everyone's time is wasted. We've discussed approximate spec but not detailed, that's next stage. I just didn't want to be ripped off, but in a way although this company hasn't done exactly this before I think that could be a plus point as they are wanting to go in this direction and will want something to show off.

What does evil diesel do ? Please don't say something incredibly similar to what you do !
In your earlier post you were suggesting that things were still open about the spec. You are absolutely right to nail this before you commit financially because this is the main area which will lead to potential fall out and additional cost.

Evil Diesel posted a picture of one of his developments ...

I work for development company who specialise in similar projects.
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      10-09-2007, 04:54 AM   #12
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They definitely will obtain planning consent - we have our permitted development rights removed so we have to have planning for even putting a deckchair out

How realistic is 50% retainer? We tried to get a retainer on our house and solicitor said builder would never go for it these days - people getting too fussy about the plaster being the wrong shade of plaster and holding on to the money.....

How realistic is no deposit?

I think he said 10/20%, maybe 25%. Doesn't seem unreasonable as they have to instruct architects/planners/designers whatever and order products. Not many SMEs would go ahead on a 20k construction project without a deposit? Or they'd get people window shopping/kicking tyres and then not payign up ?
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      10-09-2007, 04:56 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by needforspeed View Post
In your earlier post you were suggesting that things were still open about the spec. You are absolutely right to nail this before you commit financially because this is the main area which will lead to potential fall out and additional cost.

Evil Diesel posted a picture of one of his developments ...

I work for development company who specialise in similar projects.
Yeah, the spec is still open but I'd definitely agree it. We even did that with our house but I take your point about quality - with our house we put "of a high quality" but even that is subjective - various elements weren't particularly high quality but its a question of whether you want to go to court over a few cheaper-than-expected doors and whether a judge would see it your way. That's where a retention would be useful.

That tells me what you and Evil Diesel's company does, but not what YOU do
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      10-09-2007, 04:57 AM   #14
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Good point about deposits though - I was thinking just this morning...what if they go bust? With conservatory companies you often have Lloyd's backed warranties which cover deposits - will have to see if he can offer that.
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      10-09-2007, 05:06 AM   #15
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Silver, I am not 'in the know' but 20K would appear to be a good all in price for a large garden room requiring deep footings. I had a much smaller (14 sq metres) conservatory installed three years ago (nothing fancy) and that was 11K all in.

Off topic slightly, I am in the process of having my attached double garage converted as a disabled suite (bedroom and bathroom) for my son. I was thinking that the 25K budget (inc architects/planning) would be stretched but maybe it wont be if there are no major building works like foundations etc which I assume can be the cost drivers. I had my planning application approved last week, so hopefully the work will get through the detailed building reg process and go out to tender very soon!
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      10-09-2007, 05:15 AM   #16
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So is it the garage becomes a suite - or you build over the garage? I was given a similar ballpark to build over our double garage and convert to bedroom + ensuite, in effect you are just adding a layer of bricks?

Sounds like you have had planning/design done and then will put building out to tender...perhaps we should do something similar. We contacted an architect but he wanted 500 quid just to do a 'feasibility study' which seemed a bit much!!!
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      10-09-2007, 05:21 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverbmwz3 View Post
How realistic is no deposit?

I think he said 10/20%, maybe 25%. Doesn't seem unreasonable as they have to instruct architects/planners/designers whatever and order products. Not many SMEs would go ahead on a 20k construction project without a deposit? Or they'd get people window shopping/kicking tyres and then not payign up ?
You are asking the right questions:

1. What if he goes bust and you lose your deposit?
2. What if he takes your money then doesn't start for 12 months?

The planning / design costs won't be that great (maybe £1K?). It would be reasonable to pay that sort of money upfront.

He will pay for materials on delivery, or on a monthly invoice basis. Builders will fight for cash flow because they operate on very low margins (profit is maybe 8% of turnover), but you should really try to avoid paying for work that hasn't been done ... in case it's never done.

'Of a high quality' doesn't mean anything at all unfortunately. You need to describe quality in more exact terms.

Typical statements from specifications could include the following:

"The works shall be designed and constructed in accordance with all relevant legislation, British Standards and Codes of Practice."

Beyond that it's about specifics. Floor finishes, skirtings, walls, ceilings, windows, cills, doors, ironmongery, lighting points and small power should all described.

BTW - I am a 'client side' project manager. Effectively I am a professional client and my job is to procure construction work for a property developer.
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      10-09-2007, 05:22 AM   #18
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It is the actual garage that is being converted, so building works limited to bricking up garage opening (+ windows of course) floating floor, lining the walls, new door opening into the house and the bathroom. The architects bill is £2.5K, so 10% of the budget. The work is actually being completed using a Govt Disability Grant so I am constrained by rules/regs surrounding it. The work has to go out to four local builders to bid for the work. It is a painful process (local Council/PCT beaurocracy and pontificating), it has taken 18 months to get this far!

All this means that the 335d has to live permanently outside!
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      10-09-2007, 05:26 AM   #19
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Thanks NFS, very useful info. Do you ever procure piling/foundations ?
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      10-09-2007, 05:27 AM   #20
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We approached the architect who designed our house and this was too small for him! So I was thinking...how do you find a decent architect that will take on a small project like this!
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      10-09-2007, 05:27 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterg1965 View Post
Silver, I am not 'in the know' but 20K would appear to be a good all in price for a large garden room requiring deep footings. I had a much smaller (14 sq metres) conservatory installed three years ago (nothing fancy) and that was 11K all in.

Off topic slightly, I am in the process of having my attached double garage converted as a disabled suite (bedroom and bathroom) for my son. I was thinking that the 25K budget (inc architects/planning) would be stretched but maybe it wont be if there are no major building works like foundations etc which I assume can be the cost drivers. I had my planning application approved last week, so hopefully the work will get through the detailed building reg process and go out to tender very soon!
The garage will be built with a single skin of brickwork with no insulation. You could simply dry line and insulate the internal face and build internal dividing walls in plasterboard and timber / metal studwork.

Only significant 'builderswork' would be to close off the old garage doors, fitting windows etc... which would require a small footing for a self supporting brick wall and excavations for drainage (which could also be avoided if you have a pumped system instead).
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      10-09-2007, 05:29 AM   #22
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Thanks NFS, very useful info. Do you ever procure piling/foundations ?
Not directly ... my projects are high capital value and generally procured on a 'design and build' basis so the contractor prices for all risks in the ground.

What do you want to know about piling / foundations?

As to finding an architect .. I wouldn't bother !

If you want something exiting the RIBA still do a charity based consultation exercise where for around £500 a 'proper' architect will give you some creative advice.

Otherwise - for your project I'd save the money and get the contractor to do the designs etc.

If you really wanted to you could probably do your own drawings for planning / procurement purposes. It's not that hard. Or employ an architectural technician / drawing office / CAD monkey to do it for you.
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