We understand that commissioning building work on your home can be a daunting prospect. Below you’ll find answers to some of the questions we’re most commonly asked before and during the process.
We’ve tried to cover everything from planning permission to finding a builder, but if there’s something you want to ask that you can’t see below, just give us a ring on 01457 871 202.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Planners develop and manage land and buildings to preserve our heritage and to help improve infrastructure on the locality. Failure to comply with Local Authority Planning Legislation will result in the owner being liable for either demolition, restoration of the new or existing building amended or built without relevant planning permission sought.
Building Inspectors are responsible for most aspects of construction so that alterations to existing buildings, extensions to existing buildings or new buildings are constructed in-line with today’s building standards using the correct building practices, which meet the correct energy performance and are inclusive to all people including people with disabilities.
Depending on the size and position of your extension will decide whether or not you require planning permission or whether you can do the building works under permitted development
We provide a free initial consultation, which involves a site visit.
We discuss your proposal and confirm whether what you want is feasible.
We provide you there and then with a hand written quotation, which includes local authority fee’s, engineers fee’s and any other fee’s that are likely to be involved in the service we provide. This is followed-up with a formal quotation whether by email or posted to you.
We survey your property, which involves us taking all measurements of your property, check approximate drainage and land around the property so that we can draw accurate scale plans, sections and elevations.
We produce existing and proposed plans and elevations, which detail what is there now and exactly what we are proposing. We then post or email the drawings back to you for you to confirm that your happy with the proposal.
We pride ourselves on returning the drawings within up to three weeks of survey.
WE ARE NOT 100% HAPPY WITH THE PROPOSAL AND WOULD LIKE TO CHANGE CERTAIN THINGS, WHAT DO WE DO NEXT?
Either call us to discuss or simply mark on the drawings the changes you wish to make and return back to us by post or email. We will amend and reissue the drawings for you to approve.
No there are, no additional cost involved at this stage for minor alterations like internal walls or door/window positions. We simply amend the drawings to suit your desired layout.
The only time additional costs will be incurred is when you would like to amend the drawings after they have been submitted to either planning or building regulations.
At this point, Stage 1, we issue the drawings via email for your confirmation that the drawings represent your wishes and that you are happy for us to submit your application. We then issue an invoice to you for the agreed fees and a request for a cheque, or bank transfer, to be made payable to the Local Authority for your Planning Fee, if planning is required.
Planning Permission will take between 6 and 8 weeks from submission. As soon as we receive the cheque we will submit the relevant drawings and documentation to the local authority.
We generally don’t start the building regulation drawings until we have received planning permission. This is because our fee is divided into two stages – Stage one and Stage two.
Stage one is existing and proposed plans, elevations suitable to obtain planning permission or lawful development.
Stage two is the combination of stage one drawings combined with relevant sections, specifications and details suitable for building regulation approval and contractors price.
If planning permission is not required and only building control drawings are required then we will invoice you for stage one and two drawings combined. We will issue stage 1 drawings once payment is received we will proceed with your building regulation drawings.
Again, we pride ourselves on a speedy service and we aim to have the drawings completed and ready to submit within a three week period of you consenting for us to proceed with Stage Two. Obviously this depends on the complexity of the individual project. For example, a single story extension is a much quicker turnaround than a double extension, which is reflected in our quotation.
We submit the drawings and relevant documentation to the Local Authority Building Control for approval.
Because William McCall is a part of the LABC (link) partnership the process is much quicker and allows us to have the plans approved within 2 – 4 weeks instead of 6 – 8 weeks.
We issue all relevant certificates and three sets of drawings, which are included for in your quotation. Any additional copies of the drawings will be charged at £5.00 per copy as our drawings are A1 and full colour. Once you receive your drawings you can issue them for tender to your builders.
You may wish to use a builder recommended, or choose from our recommended list of builders here. The builders on our recommended list are builders we have worked with on past projects and we know to be competent. Note:- the choice of builder will be at your discretion.
Not necessarily. We recommend that you obtain a breakdown of the two most competitive quotes so that you can see exactly what the builders have or have not priced for. You should also take into consideration the timescales of the quotes.
Unless you have specifically got us to produce a Schedule of Work for the project, which is an additional fee the builder may not have priced exactly for what is on the drawings. For example the drawings don’t identify what boiler you are having or the number of light fittings, floor finishes etc… as these are not requirements of building control. We recommend that the client provide details of all finishes and furnishings. Example: kitchen and bathroom furniture
A SoW is a complete shopping list of everything that is included in the project. It also includes detailed instructions for the builder to follow to achieve the finished design. Within the SoW we will specify exactly the types of finishes you require, which cuts out the grey areas in the builders pricing. It also allows you to change specification or omit certain elements from the scheme, which can help to bring the project in on budget or keep cost down. However, even with a SoW there will always be extra’s and unknowns when dealing with existing or new buildings.
You should ensure that your insurance cover on your property covers you for building works and if not upgrade it so it does for the duration of the build. Also check that the builder has all his insurances in place prior to commencing on site. It is also good practice for the builder to send out a letter to your neighbours explaining what he is about to do, when he is starting the work and include his contact details. The client must be aware of any party wall obligations prior to commencement on site.
For small projects a letter of intent should be sufficient. This should state the amount tendered for starting and finishing dates. For larger projects contracts such as a JCT minor works of other off the shelf contracts can be used for safeguarding your project.