Home extension - site supervision of the works
Most home extensions do not receive formal site supervision of
the works by the Building Designer or Architect. This service is usually called 'Contract
Administration' and to do it correctly, will involve the home extension designer or architect in a lot of
hours during the build as they have to do it in accordance with a very heavy set of administrative
procedures. Hence their fees for this service can be quite high so many homeowners refuse or avoid this level
of ancillary services.
The question is, how important is it to engage your home extension designer or
architect for this phase of the project and is it really needed? Well, it all depends on the type
of builder you end up selecting and whether you can install the time & effort yourself to monitor and liaise
with the main contractor.
If you select a well experienced, fully researched and recommended builder that
has the correct skills and resources who is already used to working from the construction details of your home
extension designer or architect, then probably not. This is also reliant upon the fact that the design is not
overly complicated that requires the designer to be on hand to ensure any unusual details for example.
However, if the opposite is true then you would be well advised to engage the
designers services to administer the contract during the works. This role usually involves the home
extension designer visiting site about twice a week or as required, recording events, generally monitoring the
works for compliance and against the contract documents, recording any variations and agreeing add or omit costs,
adjusting the PC sums, agreeing interim valuations & instructing the client when and what to pay at the correct
The slight downside for the home extension designer or architect offering this service is
that they also take on greater responsibility for the built works that previously would have been entirely the main
contractors. This is one reason why many designers charge so much for this service as there is added demand
onto their PI insurance.
Many home extension builders like to have a contract administrator on board during the
build works while others find them interfering, petty and obstructive to their work flow. It all really
depends upon the attitudes of both parties really - some get on together whilst others do not.
The alternative to full contract administration services by your home extension designer
or architect is to agree a lower level of involvement from your designer during the works to be able to call on
him/her in at will for anything specific or technical that could do with some added input or clarification.
This level of service is usually called 'Clients Advisor'.