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About Visti

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  1. Thanks @Ferdinand As most have said, UK doesn't really have standard sizes. Cost will mostly come down to who you chose to supply. That chart helped us pick our preferred supplier based on the best cost Vs quality standpoint. There were obviously other factors but the balance between the two swung most of the decision. My two additional tips would be to stick to simple right angle shapes and to negotiate. Anything curved or fancy is going to be a fair bit pricier, so we went for simple rectangles and squares. Also simplify the opening method or leave them closed to keep cost down. As for negotiating... You don't get far without some research and a bit of haggling. It may be uncomfortable, but I always take the view that it is better for their sales to respect you than take you for full price
  2. Visti

    Keen to learn from those in the know

    The land registry allows for enquiries as to who owns the land though I can't confirm whether it's services are available in NI.
  3. Visti

    Is Plotfinder worth it?

    It is only £3 per enquiry to the land registry to find out who owns a potential plot of land. Use good to spot them anf that to get the info needed to follow up.
  4. Visti

    Cheaper PV panels on the way

    Perfect timing, just going about quotes now for PV
  5. Nothing states that they were removed, and the LDO has PD included... Can one just assume it to be in place?
  6. Not having a written contract is also a positive given your current position... you can negotiate changes to the scope/quality of the work and you could even stop works at any time and settle up with your contractor nearly immediately. Though I suggest you negotiate an exit strategy for both of you so you don't part on bad terms. Don't forget a verbal contract is still considered legal, just very hard to prove.
  7. It is tempting to just go ahead and point out that it'd be covered by PD following completion anyway. Only issue, and this is one that plagues me a lot, is Graven Hill. We may have to apply for a 'Temporary Structure' if it isn't on the planning permission drawings. So really, it comes down to whichever is cheaper. The cost of updating the PP, or of just submitting to GH... sigh. Thanks for the clarifications though!
  8. Since we did the cost exercise we've been much more comfortable in making decisions on how money is spent. We know when we're going over our budgeted amount and by how much. Every grand we overspend we've got to either accept as an increase in total cost or rake it back by reducing some other line item. It's really helped keep perspective and makes managing the funds much easier. We also go with the fabric first approach, whereby we prioritise costs going into the fabric of the house where they'll last 50+ yrs (we hope), rather than items which can be easily replaced down the line such as kitchens, bathrooms, joinery and landscaping. This is very much in line with our plan for this to be a forever home, however your priorities my be different. Regarding the contractor; be on top of them and get those details for why costs are spiralling. Communicate the limits of your budget and the consequences for going over. Refer to contractual items if need be. If they provided a fixed price, then they accepted the risk of material and labour costs. If not, then unfortunately the risk is yours to bear. Get a dialogue going and try to identify where you can cut costs or what parts of the project can be de-scoped with the contractor. Worst comes to worst, try to get the project to a place whereby it can be neatly paused as you re-evaluate the financial situation and what it'd take to finish the project. That should hopefully give you the breathing-room to think clearly.
  9. So we failed to provision for a shed during our planning application, instead including a 20ft container due to time pressures... Turns out, we've been largely caught up in other paperwork since then so the haste was for naught. We've determined to build our own shed to use for welfare during the 2 yr build, which we hope to transition into a outhouse + garden tool storage after the build is done. I'm confident we can do the foundation, walls and roof well enough ourselves for about £2k all in I've checked all the requirements at the planning portal for Class E (detached outbuildings) and can ensure we meet them. I've also ensured that Graven Hill (the Local Development Order) also provisions for permitted development. However, I've read many places (particularly on this forum) that PD isn't valid until AFTER the completion of one's build, though I can't confirm this formally anywhere else. Can anyone help clarify whether I need to submit for an update to my planning certificate, or whether I can go ahead under standard PD rules?
  10. Visti


    Another tactic is to secure contracts in advance by paying the deposit. Our biggest ticket items (frame, windows etc...) Have all of en negotiated and paid for, even though we're not even on site yet. Again, risky... But if there's no risk there's no saving. Always proportional!
  11. Visti


    It is a risk, but that is the cornerstone of the Fx industry... Hedging ones bets. It's not a safe bet, and one your bank is unlikely to council you on (high standard banks standard policy is to give you the law, and to avoid anything construed as advice for legal reasons). If you want advice, consult a private Financial Services firm and they may have products to shore you up against a falling pound. You obviously pay for their management and advice. Else take the risk and purchase euros directly. We did that before Brexit and are thankful we did.
  12. Visti

    Gaulhofer windows and doors : Thomas Froelich

    Likewise, just spoke to Craig. Very tragic news. Thomas was a very positive and tenacious character on the occasions we met. Thoughts are with his family and the Ecowin sales team.
  13. @Ferdinand is right, I'm one of the younger self builders at 31. In the south no less. Only reason it has been possible is a combination of factors: - Saving near enough 25% salary since starting my career. Lived in cheap/shared accommodation until last year to make it happen. - left university with no debt, paid via summer jobs, and never taken on any other debt since - always been frugal. For example, cars have always been sub £3k and bougt outright - been super fortunate in my education (aerospace engineering) that has landed me an insanely good career. - inheritance via father-in-law (biggest reason) - lucky break on a few share options - decision to project manage and DIY about £40k worth of labour (else we can't afford it). How we do that with two full time jobs between us will be an interesting challenge I won't deny that the majority of the above is down to privilege and luck. I would definitely consider myself a fortunate outlier, and am very thankful for it. But if I had a choice, I'd rather have my father-in-law around.
  14. That is awesome news for us as we're going full electric!
  15. Visti

    Window fitting

    Exactly same position as you with both suppliers. Hopefully they fit after all that!