Are you about to start your self build journey? If so this is an exciting time for you and your family.
Building your home is massive undertaking both financially and in terms of commitment and work load.
It’s a step by step process from getting planning permission and a mortgage to breaking ground and working with all your tradesmen to build the dream.
In all the excitement its very easy top get carried away and lose control of your project both in term of programme (Timescale to complete the project from start to finish) and cost.
At Take off Bill we are Chartered Quantity Surveyors and Estimators so have a natural eye for cost saving and maintaining budget. We are here to help you save money on your self build.
In our experience and in order to save money on your self build you need to think in terms of time and money a. Its ok to think about the exciting stuff too but learn to be develop strict budgets and timescales for your project, and stick to them.
The following steps are paramount to delivering a successful project and in this order too:
Set your budget depending on what you can comfortably afford. In other words get a mortgage that you can comfortably pay back each month without putting yourself under too much financial pressure. This may seem boring and conservative but trust us, don’t borrow too much. Don’t worry about the size of the neighbours house either.
By hiring a professional architect, you will get the best design for your new home. A professional architect will use the space of the site to suit your house, will design the house to be functional while also capturing the best aspects of nature such as natural light etc. Make sure you discuss your budget with your architect. Work together to design a home that fulfils both design and budget. Although an Architect is not a Quantity Surveyor, he/ she should be knowledgeable regarding construction budget costs.
Be strict on budget, sometimes an architect can get carried away, always pull him back to budget. Once the final design is done, DO NOT change as this will affect your budget and programme. If you need more time to consider the design, take it, but do agree a design and them change it six months later.
At this stage, you have your completed design from your architect and are getting ready to get quotations for your various work packages from foundations to roofs, to plastering and plumbing and electrical work.
This is where, we, at Take off Bill, step in. In order to break your design into the various work packages for tender, it will be necessary to produce a Bill of Quantities. We will produce a full elemental BoQ (Sometimes referred to as a “Take off”). See below an example of the make-up of a Bill of Quantities (All of these items may not be necessary):
Bill No. 1: Main contractor’s preliminaries
Bill No. 2: Intrusive investigations
Bill No. 3: Demolition works
Bill No. 4: Groundworks
Bill No. 5: Piling
Bill No. 6: Concrete works
Bill No. 7: Roof coverings and roof drainage
Bill No. 8: External and internal structural walls
Bill No. 9: Cladding
Bill No. 10: Windows and external doors
Bill No. 11: Mastic
Bill No. 12: Non-structural walls and par titions
Bill No. 13: Joinery
Bill No. 14: Suspended ceilings
Bill No. 15: Architectural metalwork
Bill No. 16: Tiling
Bill No. 17: Painting and decorating
Bill No. 18: Floor coverings
Bill No. 19: Fittings, furnishings and equipment
Bill No. 20: Combined mechanical and electrical engineering services
Bill No. 21: Lifts and escalators
Bill No. 22: Facade access equipment
Bill No. 23: External works and drainage
Bill No. 24: Risks
Bill No. 25: Provisional sums
Bill No. 26: Credits
Bill No. 27: Daywork (Provisional)
As you can see you will have a full breakdown of all the trades required for your build. This is an invaluable document for pricing your various trades and materials required to complete your project.
At Take off Bill, we have the key personnel, experience and software to produce BoQ’s to the highest industry standards. We will supply you with a full BoQ in excel format together with marked up drawings
Get returned prices from your suppliers and tradesmen on a like for like basis, you will see huge savings and variances in prices for your project. Remember to always consider cost and quality together too. Get references for tradesmen before you engage with them. Make sure you have contracts with your tradesmen too.