What We Do
Initial Visit and Quote
First stage is for us to visit you at your property and have a look at your proposed extension/alteration ideas. We may also suggest other solutions if relevant. This done, we return to our office and prepare a fee quote, which we send back to you. If you accept it, we go ahead.
Survey of Property
We need to show what is already there before we can move on to the new works. In order to produce ‘As Existing’ drawings, a measured survey of your property is first completed and site photographs taken. We draw up the information gathered at survey to produce base drawings on our computers. These then form the basis of the other drawings in the later work stages.
Proposed Design
Initially these are often hand drawn drawings giving you differing options for you to consider the pros and cons alternative designs. We have a discussion about the designs and arrive at an agreed scheme that works for you. Other times, your requirements may be clear at the start, and we will simply draw up your proposals in a form that is achievable.
These days there is quite a lot one can build under Permitted Development Rights, as the government seeks to achieve greater efficiency and reduce its workload. We will advise what it may be possible to build without planning permission in your particular case. This can be confirmed with a Lawful Development Certificate from the council, although you do not need to have this.
Many schemes do fall outside the remit of PD Rights, and so we need to make a planning application on your behalf. This requires drawings, forms and reports to be done to quite specific standards. It is then over to the Local Planning Authority to decide whether what we propose is acceptable to them and in accordance with their established policies.
Building Regulations
Once planning permission is achieved, and not normally before, we produce a further set of drawings and notes for your scheme, which show a greater level of technical detail. This is to demonstrate compliance with standards of health and safety, energy efficiency, access and other matters we must attend to under the Building Act. We send our information to a separate department of the local council for comment and approval under the Building Regulations.
By this time we have a set of fairly detailed drawings and notes that are enough for a competant, local building contractor to price and build from. You may wish to have several builders price the drawings to get the most competitive cost available for the works. We introduce you to the builder and you appoint them to carry out the project. Equally, if you already have a builder you wish to employ, we liaise with them and issue them with the drawings they need.
Interior Design
Many clients like to get involved themselves with choosing finishes, furnishings and fittings for the completed extension. Kitchens and bathrooms can be sourced from manufacturers and suppliers who will often provide you with a free design service. For these reasons we as architects don’t usually get employed to design the detail of these aspects. However, we can assist you with this if required.