Self-Building Guide

Following on from last month’s article which outlined your initial 3 steps to self-building, you have now found a suitable plot, made sure approval can be achieved, and selected your design team. Here are your next steps to making your dream a reality:

 

Financing your project

When your Architect is taking the brief from you, they will ask what is your budget? We always ask this question on our first meeting prior to being appointed, we can then provide you with advice if it is achievable. The building plot will usually be the largest outlay for the project, in general it can be between a third or more than half of your budget for prime sites. Unless you are doing a lot of the work yourself, labour costs will be the next biggest outlay (usually around 25%) followed by materials (20%). Your architect’s fees will be between 6-10% of the construction cost; if you also want them to project manage this fee will increase. Other consultants and surveys (5%). Utilities and services fees can be a significant outlay depending on your location. The general rule of thumb is £1500/sqm which will increase or decrease based on your chosen specification, and if your contractor is completing a Turnkey build, you are project managing yourself, or if you are undertaking much of the work yourself.

 

Other consultants

There are many additional consultants and surveys you will require throughout the project, this is based on the site constraints, location and design. The consultants or surveys you require will depend on the existing site for example, if you have existing trees or utilities on site,  if the site is on a slope, in open countryside, AONB, if a watercourse runs through the site, if the site is in a flood zone. We identify the site constraints, and advise who else you will need to appoint at our first meeting so you have a full overview of the costs involved with the project. Other consultants can include Structural Engineers, Quantity Surveyors, Land Surveyors, Tree consultants, Ecologists, Drainage consultants, Eco-Consultants, Planning consultants and Landscape Architects.

 

Selecting your contractor & managing the build

Your chosen contractor will depend on how involved you want to be in your project. You may want a TurnKey service, or you may want to project manage yourself. Tendering your project with a detailed tender package will enable you to compare like-for-like quotes, and working with an architect and/or quantity surveyor will ensure you will obtain the relevant advice with regards to choosing the correct building contract between yourself and the contractor, and monitoring the build and contract through the construction phase. Be realistic about the time and skillset you are able to put into your project and which elements could be undertaken by a consultant or main contractor, and evaluate if this would be more or less cost effective.

 

Contact a member of our team for your free consultation to discuss how you can begin your own self-build dream project.

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