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After Planning Permission: A Guide To Actually Building Your Project

You’ve just been granted planning permission – there are a million articles and videos online that have taken you right up to this point. But now you’re entering the less-documented part of your building project. 

How do you actually get your project built?

We thought that the best thing to do is to produce this overview to show you just that. From being granted planning consent, to deciding on a project management type, dealing with building regulations, constructing your project, and finally, moving in.

We’ve had the good fortune of working on a diverse array of projects in the residential and commercial sectors – ranging from extensions, renovations and remodelling through to basements, new-builds and shop-fitting. 

Our team has decades of combined experience, which means that we’ve run into almost every obstacle one could think of. And this is good news for you, as it means we have the experience, skills, and creativity to keep your project on time and budget.

What follows are the seven main steps of the process. 

Step 1: First contact

Sounds obvious, and it is. At this early stage in your building project it’s likely you’re going to have lots of questions about your building project, so we just want to let you know that we’re here to assist. 

You might want to know the difference between a full construction service and project management. JCT vs FMB contracts. What the deal with Health & Safety is. How materials are procured. The list goes on.

We’ll need to work out if you have all the pre-construction particulars in place, such as the architect’s drawings, structural engineer’s reports, and that Building Control have been consulted. We can advise on what you might be missing, and how best to go about obtaining it.

Step 2: On-site meeting

After your initial contact we’ll try to arrange a socially-distanced on-site meeting with you where COVID restrictions permit. This allows us to make a full assessment of your proposed project and your site. We’ll be checking things like your technical and working drawings, accessibility to the site, measurements, ground conditions, and conduct a preliminary health and safety appraisal.

The most important thing at this stage – that most builders neglect – is to listen to determine what your precise needs are. This means that we’ll want to know exactly what it is that you’re wanting to achieve, what style you’re aiming for, what your exact budget is etc. It’s also important at this stage for us to find out exactly what it is that you want and expect from us, so that we can fully manage your expectations.

This is also the best time for you to probe deep and ask us even more questions. After all, we understand that your building project is one of the biggest investments of both your time and money that you’re ever likely to make, so it’s crucial that we establish a strong partnership built on trust.

Step 3: Provide Estimate

Once we’ve completed the initial site meeting and gathered all the relevant details from you and any third parties, we’ll start work straight away on compiling your estimate. 

Included in this estimate, we’ll detail precisely and comprehensively all the work that you require undertaking and will provide a full cost of works.

At this stage you’ll also get a copy of our Terms & Conditions as well as a copy of the relevant contract to take a look through. But don’t worry, you won’t have to sign anything at this stage – it’s just for full transparency so that you have as much information up-front in order for you to make the best decision.

Step 4: Pre-commencement meeting

If we’re having a pre-commencement meeting it means that you’ve contracted us to bring your project to life. We’re grateful for the opportunity and promise to deliver the highest quality work.

At this meeting we’ll start by going through the schedule of works so that you know exactly what is happening, when, and with whom. 

We’ll also begin to make arrangements for smaller details such as the location of a site office (if required), storage of materials, on-site WC facilities, health and safety requirements as well as arrange strict site operating hours so that we keep all disruption to yourselves and neighbours to an absolute minimum.

Step 5: Register site with local authority

Your project and site needs to be registered for building regulations with the local authority 72 hours before any work starts. This is just a formality – and like everything else – we will take care of this for you.

Step 6: Begin work

This is the part where we put boots on the ground and get some real work done. You can expect to be in contact with us on a regular basis. You’ll have a dedicated site manager for the duration of the project who is only ever an email or phone call away – no matter how small or trivial your issue might seem.

We will oversee all of the work from day one – from foundations to curtains. You don’t even have to worry about making anyone cups of tea!

Step 7: Project Handover

This is the stage when all building work has been completed, and once final approval has been obtained the project is safe for us to hand over to you.

Things to Remember

  • Throughout the duration of the project we are completely at your beck and call and aim to make the whole build as stress-free as possible.
  • We do all the hard work for you, after all, that is our job.
  • We provide a number of services including construction project management and you’re free to choose whichever suits you best.
  • We always listen to make sure that your exact needs are catered for.

It’s very likely you still have a whole heap of questions at this stage. If so, you can check out lots of other articles on our construction and project management blog. 

Alternatively, feel free to give us a call on 01536 525229 or send us an email and we’d be more than happy to answer any questions – completely free of charge, of course.

Mortar & Co is a construction project management company based in Kettering, Northamptonshire.