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About Ralph

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    Angus, Scotland

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  1. It really depends on the quality of information you have given him - I don't think you can expect him to come back with a fully priced bill of quantities unless you have employed a QS to prepare the bill. Usually if we are tendering a house, we would issue a set of tender drawings, which are much more detailed than building regs drawings and a schedule of works which will normally run to somewhere around 30 pages for a house - the better the information you give out, the better information you will have returned, with building reg drawings there is always a danger that the builder assumes one thing and you assume another, and you don't find out until they'll brought the brass sockets on site and started fitting them! Some people seem to have had successful builds with the minimum of paperwork and a handshake with a builder they liked. I went the other way and put in what I think was a lot of effort and some cash to make sure I'd covered as much as possible. I'll know at the end of the year if it was worth it but at the moment it feels like it was. We (well the architect) put together a tender document for builders that was 8 pages long with about 23 other documents as appendices, everything from location plans and ground/drainage reports to engineer's structural performance drawing along with detailed notes and all the usual drawings. Builders were asked to respond with indicative costs, we then shortlisted and asked a couple to provide an actual quote. The builder we went with then provided a fairly detailed tender document and a progamme of works gantt chart. That was then all worked into a minor works building contract that ran to 100 plus pages. Some builders were not prepared to go further than a single side of paper with costs broken into 6 stages with a bit to sign at the bottom.
  2. Yup, after three years in a flat while trying to get the build off the ground I'm done with small spaces and close proximity to neighbours (as nice as they all are).The lock down has reinforced my desire for more space both in terms of building and land. I appreciate that not everyone wants that or are able to do it.
  3. It's gross internal although there is a 12sqm covered balcony on top of that.
  4. Horses for courses and all that. Our goal was to not even share a boundary with another house never mind facilities. As for size my wife thinks that our 2 bedroom with 150sqm plus a separate garage (I hate the term man cave but in reality it is one) is too small. I think it's more than enough for two people.
  5. Is that really the mean size of a new-build in the UK? Does that include flats?
  6. We're using Scotframe Val-U-Therm, sort of hybrid timber/SIP. The price was not far off getting the builder to do a timber frame. As has been said before you also just need to show that the design is capable of hitting the target to get the mortgage. It could be that some solar will get you over the SAP line. Nothing says that you have to put it in, you just wont get the full discounts after completion.
  7. I think I may need to paint some galvanised steel, does anyone know if you can get a reasonable finish?
  8. The reason we discounted them was the number of sight lines you need in a 5 meter run compared to sliders. Also being in the north of Scotland we couldn't see them being fully open very often.
  9. Our building control had stopped doing site inspections before COVID so who knows where they are at now. Our biggest problem is that the kit supplier, Scotframe is still shut and you get no communication other than a standard "We are at present making preparations in our factories to allow our colleagues to return to work safely". We should have had the kit delivered a week ago but I don't know if it's even gone through the CAD stage. Sites here in Scotland are hopefully opening on Friday and my builder reckons that supplies of materials are no problem.
  10. I hope so because we are screwed in Scotland if not, 80%plus of the market is TF and our weather is not exactly kind.
  11. As with a lot of things about building what is true for one house is not necessity true for another. We had three or four builders insist they could build the house cheaper by stick building the frame themselves. When we got final costs in they were pretty much the same but for less quality in terms of u values and air tightness.
  12. £1,500 per sqm seems a bit more realistic but quite a bit depends on location. We are going to wash out at about £1,600, that's with a Scotframe kit, £20k plus of windows a metal roof and me doing pretty much zero of the work, we've also had a lot of land clearing and a 100 meter of driveway. A lot of the builders quotes I got were north of £2,000 per sqm
  13. Based on the First Minister's latest address it looks like Scottish builders will be able to start stages 0-2 the restart plan as of 28th May. I had a job finding what the restart plan actually is so I've pasted it below for others. Phase 0: Planning Phase 1: Covid-19 Pre-start Site prep Phase 2: ‘Soft start’ to site works (only where physical distancing can be maintained) Phase 3: Steady state operation (only where physical distancing can be maintained) Phase 4: Steady state operation (where physical distancing can be maintained and/or with PPE use) Phase 5: Increasing density/productivity with experience
  14. Hi all, We are going round the houses on choices of skirting and architrave and I'm looking for some opinions. We know we want something plain and are leaning towards a very simple whited painted MDF, square profile no bevel or pencil round for both the skirting and architrave. We can''t decide on the dimensions more specifically the thickness. We're thinking of skirting = 18mm x 120mm and facing = 18mm x 95mm so that they are flush with no skirting blocks. Do these dimension sound about right, would 18mm be too thick? With the lock down it's difficult to see any actually examples so any thoughts would be welcome. Thanks
  15. We are building a detached garage but it's turning more into a garden building than an actual garage, I doubt it will actually see a car.