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SERVICES2018-10-18T09:36:42+00:00

SERVICES

A multidiscipline practice providing a wide range of services such as Party Wall, Principle Designer (CDM), Expert Witness, Building Surveying and Quantity Surveying, Project Management, Right To Light, Feasibility Studies, Project Monitoring.

Structural Surveys, RICS Homebuyer Surveys and Valuations for property purchases is a core service provided by our Chartered Surveyors. Whether it’s an extension, new build or alteration the starting place is always the same. Initial detailed surveys provide the information we need to determine a projects feasibility. We’re able to dissect the information and advise next steps and guide you through the myriad of rules and regulations associated to planning and building.

With planning approval in place we will recommend a form of building contract appropriate for your project.

SURVEY

Structural Surveys, RICS Homebuyer Surveys and Valuations for property purchases is a core service provided by our Chartered Surveyors.

Whether it’s an extension, new build or alteration the starting place is always the same. Initial detailed surveys provide the information we need to determine a projects feasibility. We’re able to dissect the information and advise next steps and guide you through the myriad of rules and regulations associated to planning and building.

SURVEY

Structural Surveys, RICS Homebuyer Surveys and Valuations for property purchases is a core service provided by our Chartered Surveyors.

Whether it’s an extension, new build or alteration the starting place is always the same. Initial detailed surveys provide the information we need to determine a projects feasibility. We’re able to dissect the information and advise next steps and guide you through the myriad of rules and regulations associated to planning and building.

With planning approval in place we will recommend a form of building contract appropriate for your project.

DESIGN

Time to bring your ideas to life.

Working alongside our Architectural designers your input is invaluable to ensure we fully understand your requirements. Developing a brief which outlines appearance, function, budget and timing. Only after you have approved initial sketches will the ideas be translated into detailed drawings and technical specifications. We use the latest in 3D Modelling and BIM (Building Information Modelling) to provide you with a realistic view of the finished project and allows you to have full 3D visualisations and walk throughs on your smart phone or tablet.

As a multi-discipline practice we’re able to keep costs down by incorporating a wealth of experience in-house avoiding the need for many external consultants. Should your project require specialist consultation we have trusted partners we can call on to ensure you receive only the best advice and service.

Your detailed drawings are sent out to a number of partner contractors to tender. We’ll liaise with them on your behalf and provide a full report and recommendation. Once agreed it’s time to get our hands dirty!

DESIGN

Time to bring your ideas to life.

Working alongside our Architectural designers your input is invaluable to ensure we fully understand your requirements. Developing a brief which outlines appearance, function, budget and timing. Only after you have approved initial sketches will the ideas be translated into detailed drawings and technical specifications. We use the latest in 3D Modelling and BIM (Building Information Modelling) to provide you with a realistic view of the finished project and allows you to have full 3D visualisations and walk throughs on your smart phone or tablet.

As a multi-discipline practice we’re able to keep costs down by incorporating a wealth of experience in-house avoiding the need for many external consultants. Should your project require specialist consultation we have trusted partners we can call on to ensure you receive only the best advice and service.

Your detailed drawings are sent out to a number of partner contractors to tender. We’ll liaise with them on your behalf and provide a full report and recommendation. Once agreed it’s time to get our hands dirty!

DELIVER

From the foundation up we will manage the entire project on your behalf and monitor the contractors work against the contract. Ensuring required standards deadlines and budgets are met.

It’s your project and we welcome your input throughout the process, we understand that things may change and will work with you to ensure we meet expectations, our aim is to exceed them.

After final sign off from building regulations and any other required authorities we’ll tour the building with you to gain client sign off and proudly hand over the keys!

DELIVER

From the foundation up we will manage the entire project on your behalf and monitor the contractors work against the contract. Ensuring required standards deadlines and budgets are met.

It’s your project and we welcome your input throughout the process, we understand that things may change and will work with you to ensure we meet expectations, our aim is to exceed them.

After final sign off from building regulations and any other required authorities we’ll tour the building with you to gain client sign off and proudly hand over the keys!

SERVICES IN DETAIL

If you are a tenant taking a full repairing and insuring (FRI) lease, you will have a responsibility to put the building into good repair, keep it that way, and surrender it in good repair.

TENANTS
Sometimes it is possible to negotiate a lease so that you hand it back in no worse condition than you took it. A Schedule of Condition is a record of its condition at the commencement of the lease – this is a vital document. The Schedule of Condition may make the difference between repairing a roof and completely replacing it, and may save you thousands of pounds.

LANDLORDS
The repairing clauses in a commercial lease are enforced through a Schedule of Dilapidations. This document sets out the defects the landlord, or more usually his surveyor, thinks needs to be carried out in order to bring the property back into repair. It is served on the tenant, always towards the end of a lease, and sometimes in the middle as well.

We will review the lease, prepare the documentation, and negotiate the best deal for you.

Renovating a house, building an extension or even constructing a complete new build is a very demanding, stressful and bewildering prospect to many without the experience necessary.

At Elcock Associates we have a number of project managers with a wealth of experience at Contract Administration and Employers Agent, who are experts able to help make your dream new house or extension, a reality without the headache. We are professional surveyors and will act at all times with your project brief in mind. As an added advantage all the present project managers and surveyors have at some time undertaken their own new builds or large renovation projects and know from personal experience the trials and tribulations you may face. Let us use our experience and guide you through the process to ensure you get the house you want at the end.

We offer a bespoke, competitively priced service, which can begin with the initial design meeting with yourself, commencing architects drawings, planning applications, contractor tendering and negotiation, contract formation and advice, interim payments and certification through to handing back your project at completion.

Party Walls are defined as a wall which forms part of a building and stands on lands of different owners i.e. usually the common wall separating two buildings.

A Party Fence Wall is a wall which straddles a boundary, but is not part of a building. A Party Structure means a Party Wall, but also a floor, partition, or other structure separating buildings or parts of a building approached solely by separate staircases or entrances.

Party wall legislation came about from the damaged caused during the Great Fire of London, where fire spread unchecked from building to building. The London Building Acts were introduced to control the standards and procedures for building, but only within London. The latest version of this, The London Building Acts (Amendment) Act 1939, still controls the building in London, and part of this act deals with the procedures to be adopted for extending or building into party walls. New legislation, the Party Wall etc. Act 1996, is virtually an exact copy and extended these procedures to the remainder of the country.

In principal, if you own a building and you want to do works to the Party Wall, or build close to it, you are entitled to do certain things (like build up or build into the party wall, or build foundations within a certain distance/depth), but you are required by law to serve notice on the adjoining owner and follow strict procedures. They then have the right to appoint their own surveyor.

If you are the building owner intending to do works to a Party Wall, you must serve notice ( a Party Structure Notice) on the adjoining owner, at least 2 months before the date on which the proposed work will begin. They then have the right to dissent and appoint their own surveyor, probably at your cost. Costs are borne by the building owner unless they are done to repair the wall, in which case they are shared.

If you are the building owner intending to excavate within 3 metres of an adjoining building AND the excavation or structure extends below the level of their foundations; or you are intending to excavate within 6 metres AND any part of the excavation or structure falls with a plane drawn at 45º; you must serve notice (a 3m/6m Notice) on the adjoining owner, at least 1 month before beginning to excavate. They then have the right to dissent and appoint their own surveyor, probably at your cost.

Excavations within 3m or 6m – A 3m/6m Notice must be served. The two appointed surveyors (or one agreed surveyor) then agree what and how the works will be carried out, formalised in a Party Wall Award.

The work governed by the act (eg foundations) is often critical to completion of the project and failure to comply with the legislation can cause delay and expense. The courts will readily grant an injunction to restrain building work carried out in disregard of the Party Wall procedures.

Note that Section 20 of the act requires that the surveyor must be a person “….not being a party to the matter appointed…..” He should therefore be independent and not an employee or consultant engaged for other duties, such as an architect. If an appointing officer for a local authority were to appoint someone employed by the LA, it would be difficult to show that they were truly impartial, which may breach the rules of natural justice or under the European Convention. We will advise on the law and the implications it has on your proposals. We can serve notices and deal with the other surveyors involved.

Since the Party Wall etc Act 1996 came into force, homeowners in England and Wales have had a procedure to follow when building work involves a party wall or party fence wall.

The Act is designed to minimise disputes by making sure property owners use a surveyor to determine the time and way in which work is carried out. You can use an ‘agreed surveyor’ to act for both property owners should problems arise.

The Act allows you to carry out work on – or next to – a shared wall. At the same time protecting the interests of anyone else who might be affected by that work.

WHAT DOESN’T THE ACT COVER?

The Act doesn’t cover everyday minor jobs that don’t affect the neighbours’ half of a party wall including:

Fixing Plugs
Screwing In Wall Units Or Shelving
Adding Or Replacing Some Recessed Electrical Wiring Or Sockets
Replastering Your Walls.

Elcock Associates Can Guide You Through This Act And Issue Notices And Awards On Your Behalf.

HOMEBUYER SURVEYS

A common question is “why do I need a survey when the mortgage company is already doing one”? The fundamental difference is that they are doing a valuation to ensure that the funds they lend you are secure. It is not a comprehensive survey on the condition of the property and it is not primarily for your benefit. It is always advisable for you to have your own survey when buying a home so that you know precisely what you are buying.

Incredibly only about 20% of purchasers have a survey! Yet we rarely survey a building that has no defects. It is very often the case that the report highlights defects which are sufficient to negotiate a discount, very often more than offsetting the survey cost.

Homebuyer Survey & Valuation (HSV) – Now Called the RICS Homebuyer Report (HBR)

This is the briefer of the two reports, quoted by the RICS as, “giving factual information on significant aspects of the condition of the property, usually a home, to the prospective purchaser.” The Homebuyer survey identifies defects which we consider urgent or of significant importance and likely to affect the value of the property. It also provides a market valuation and rebuilding insurance valuation. This survey is completed by qualified building surveyors who are members of The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

The Homebuyer survey involves inspection of the whole property, which includes:

Roof Coverings
Drainage
Roof Structure
Internal Walls, Floors And Partitions
External Walls
Internal Joinery
Guttering
Kitchen Fittings
Damp Proof Course
Sanitary Appliances
Sub-Floor Ventilation
General Decorative Condition
Windows, Doors & External Joinery
Visible defects would be identified, such as the presence of dry-rot, rising damp, woodworm, cracks in the structure etc. The testing of services is not covered, but usually a report on its visible condition is given. If required the survey can incorporate an energy survey and testing of services at additional cost.

BUILDING SURVEYS

These used to be called Structural Surveys, which is misleading because they cover much more than just the structure, and they are now referred to as Building Surveys. These surveys are carried out by Associate and Chartered surveyors. All surveyors are accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and experts in their field.

They are a much more detailed survey than the Homebuyer Survey and we will advise on the structural stability of the building, with particular reference to trees nearby and whether they pose a threat, together with recommendations for remedial works. It will give a detailed description of the construction and inherent defects which may occur over a longer period of time. It will also offer long-term maintenance advice. A valuation is not normally provided, but can be if requested.

We carry out both the Homebuyer survey and Building surveys for clients and recommend that the type and the age of the property is most likely to dictate which is most suitable. Call or email for advice if you are unsure. Please note that the prices quoted are for properties of standard construction.

OPEN MARKET VALUATION

A valuation would usually be carried out by the mortgage lender for their own purposes and will be arranged by them, If however, you require an independent valuation for probate, transfer of ownership etc. we can carry out a private valuation.

Under the CDM (2015) Regulations any project which is notifiable to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) will require the appointment of a Principal Designer. The role of the Principal Designer is to provide the client with a key project advisor in respect of construction health and safety risk management matters. The Principal Designer will advise and assist the client on appointment of competent contractors and report on the adequacy of management arrangements, prepare construction phase plans, facilitate good communication and co-operation between the project team and prepare the health and safety file at the end of the project.

Elcock Associates offer this as a standalone service or within our Employer’s Agent and Contract Administration service.

We provide design advice and reports to confirm that developments meet planning requirements, this will include:

Vertical Sky Component (VSC)
Daylight Distribution and the No Sky Line.
Average Daylight Factor
Annual Probable Sunlight Hours
Overshadowing to Gardens and Open Spaces.

We also provide reports and advice on Rights of Light claims and use our experience as Chartered Surveyors and Designers to provide robust and detailed reports.

Elcock Associates have been involved in the development and design of many projects, from starter homes and apartments through to high end luxury living delivering award winning homes.

We work closely with our clients to provide a tailored service, our projects are modelled in 3D and we hold regular meetings and talk you through the design development and provide our designs on Ipad’s and other devices so that you are in constant dialogue with us and able to be involved in the whole process.

At an early stage, we will advise on the necessity of other consultants or any constraints such as Planning for Daylight, Rights of Light, Party Wall and CDM (2015). In house we offer all of these services and can avoid costly delays to the project by acting early on.

Our work is completed in stages, from preliminary feasibility study through to the conceptual design and planning application. Upon approval we will prepare detailed Building Regulation and Construction drawings, all in 3D and where necessary to BIM levels with external consultants.
To make certain that schemes deliver as expected and are fit for purpose, we place client and end user requirements at the heart of our approach.
To facilitate this we create 3D visualisations and fly through animations, so stakeholders can experience the building at an early stage and input into the design process.

We also use Building Information Modelling (BIM) to test the different options available to our clients. This helps them choose the best solutions for their scheme, making certain that the building will meet their requirements from the start.

With any prospective venture be it large or small, residential or commercial, there are many factors to be considered from inception through to completion. Early and detailed analysis of the various issues that will have an influence on the project is essential to establish the feasibility of the scheme under consideration. Elcock Associates Ltd as a multi-disciplined firm of Chartered Surveyors can offer a comprehensive service to their clients when it comes to undertaking feasibility studies.

Factors taken into consideration during the feasibility study include, but are not limited to:

Over view of the existing environment to establish prime objectives and core requirements.
Preparation of scheme proposal in relation to the brief.
Preparation of budget estimates and early cost advice.
Identify any issues such as compliance with Building Regulations, boundary issues, CDM Co-ordination, Party Wall Act, Planning and legal matters.
Prepare CAD (Computer Aided Design) drawings where necessary.

The cost plan is the platform or baseline for controlled design development and provides an essential tool to enable projects to be delivered within budget. As well as being a key document, the process of developing a cost plan often highlights areas of risk and uncertainty and may well help clarify the team’s thinking on issues of scope, specification and programme all of which affect the cost.

An essential element of successful cost control is the strict administration of change control procedures throughout all stages of the project from initial budgets, during the design stage and throughout construction.

Services offered include:

Cost management
Budget costings
Value engineering
Procurement advice
Contract advice and selection.
Final account preparation
Capital Allowance reporting
Cost planning
Cost control and contractual negotiations & resolution.

Elcock Associates qualified surveyors are often called upon to provide expert witness services to individuals and the legal profession having built up a reputation as formidable experts in the below fields in Court and arbitration proceedings:

Contractual procedures
Delays and extensions of time
Party Wall etc Act 1997
Building disputes
Detailing and specification of contracts and drawings
Building and construction latent defects
Valuation of property
Professional negligence

If you have to make an insurance claim there is so much to take on board, usually at a very stressful stage following damage to your commercial or residential property. Part of the process is to work out the claim and deal with the insurance companies.

It is important to understand the difference between a ‘Loss Adjuster’ and a ‘ Loss Assessor’. The key difference between them is that a loss adjuster will work for the insurance company and are employed to represent their interests.

A loss assessor will work for YOU the policyholder. Elcock Associates are independent professional surveyors who will act to protect your interests.

As part of our role we will manage the claim on your behalf from the outset, it is important therefore that you appoint a loss assessor as early as possible. Elcock Associates as part of our role will:

Manage the claim.
Organise emergency repairs and property security.
Help find alternative accommodation.
Provide expert reporting on the damage and re-instatement works and costs.
Negotiate the settlement.

Building Information Modelling is the latest development in the construction industry and aims to develop the way consultants and contractors collaborate. It is rapidly changing the way project teams produce and coordinate design and construction information for building projects, and represents a similar leap forward to the original move from paper-based drafting to the use of 2D CAD software.

The concept of BIM has two key elements:

To integrate INFORMATION on building performance requirements and component specification into the modelling of the building as design progresses so that this information can be accessed across the project team and passed to the client on completion of the project.

To MODEL the building in 3D so that detailing issues can be properly considered as part of the design, and ultimately so that all design disciplines can share the model data to coordinate their work and resolve clashes etc. as design progresses. Rather than a series of separate 2D drawings and specifications being created to describe the project and requiring manual updating and coordination, the required information is then extracted from the model in 2D or 3D formats as required and is automatically updated and coordinated. For professional clients, the final BIM model can remain a valuable resource for the lifetime of the building allowing future adaptations and maintenance to be managed with easy access to data about the original construction.

Elcock Associates Ltd have been early adopters of this rapidly developing process, and have used BIM at all project stages from conception/feasibility design though to full Production Information packages. The process and technology and in their infancy – software and industry-standards are developing rapidly and we are committed to keeping up-to-date with ongoing developments through our external CPD programme and in-house training.

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