Scope of Service & Fees

The service covers design and procurement of building works, related external works, and more detailed interior and furniture design - such as lighting and bespoke kitchen installations. Scope is tailored to suit each client’s needs, budget, and site, by detailed discussion - at the outset when possible. Fees are agreed for each stage and payable as that stage is undertaken, so clients are not over-committed. The practice offers all normal stages of the procurement process from agreement of brief, through to final account - as listed below. Clients may choose all or parts of this service. In addition, sundry minor commissions can be undertaken at short notice, such as feasibility studies, pre-purchase inspections and advice, lease plans, license application plans, and party wall schedules.

Brief Definition
The client’s needs, or intentions, and budget are investigated through discussion. This weeds out pre-conceptions about an appropriate solution and ensures action is based on rational analysis. Famously, a perceived need for significant building works may be reduced to rearranging the furniture. Thus, both building work and the architectural service are defined, although both may change as the process develops.

A survey of the site and any existing buildings is required for most projects. This may be simply dimensional or include condition. It can be undertaken in-house or use specialists’ input.

Design development
From exploration of broad options, through selection and refinement of design and cost, each stage includes detailed client consultation.

Statutory Approvals
Planning permission, conservation area requirements, listed building consent, building control, water authority and service provider approvals are sought as necessary, including any discussion and negotiation.

Construction Information
Production drawings, schedules and written specification are normally prepared in full. Scope and fee may be reduced for expert clients, such as builders themselves.

Tender Action
Contract type and terms are selected; list of tenderers compiled after enquiries, or contractors approached with a view to negotiation; tender documents prepared and issued, analysed on return, report submitted to client with recommendations.

Contract administration
Contracts drawn up and signed; programme agreed, site inspections and meetings to monitor progress and quality and respond to matters arising; regular valuations undertaken (in-house or in liaison with a quantity surveyor if the project warrants specialist input) and payments administered. ‘Snagging’ lists prepared for action by contractor prior to certification of practical completion; making good of defects; final account negotiated and certified. ‘User manual’ for the client prepared if appropriate.

Sub-contractors and Suppliers
Samples, competitive tenders, selection, liaison, integration and administration, all within main programme.

Liaison With Other Consultants
At all appropriate stages; typically structural engineer, services engineer, quantity surveyor, party wall surveyors.

Energy Conservation and Sustainability
These issues are now becoming mainstream, and integral to project design and specification, as legislation requires increasingly high minimum standards. Clients are encouraged to exceed these standards, and gain the benefit of reduced running costs, with increased comfort and building value. Designs respond to the continual changes in relevant technology, materials, and perceived best practice. However, traditional materials and design stratagems, such as orientation to the Sun, remain as relevant as ever.