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  • Refurbish/Develop

    Order of works for a refurb???

    Good evening Property tribe!

    I'm in need of a bit of advice regarding a refurb...

    I'm about to refurb a rental property. I've purchased all the materials, new kitchen plus bathroom. Basically everything and I now need builders to execute it. The contractor recommended by my designers is not an option. I know enough to know his numbers don't make sense. So it looks like I'm gonna have to run this like a contractor and hire the labour directly...

    My questions to all you wonderful people are these;

    For a full refurb, ie back to brick what is the workflow? Where do I start and how do I progress. Which different trades will I be hiring at which stages?

    I'm gonna need to be able to make a document which lists and schedules the order of work and at what stages I'll be hiring which kind of tradesmen... Once I have this I can get cracking

    Cheers and thanks in advance :-)

    Murray

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    Hi Murray,

    This should be what you are looking for:

    Back to Brick - Order of Tasks to Rebuild

    Good luck with your project and why not document it for our Directory of Property Tribes members' refurbishment projects. ? Smile

    P.s. I strongly recommend that you change your screen name away from your email address, as it may be harvested by unscrupulous individuals to add you to their mailing list!!

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    Will do!

    Thanks for the advice, really appreciate everything you're done by with Tribes!

    Murray

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    Hi Murray,

    Sounds exciting - but daunting.  I've just finished a much larger refurb than it was supposed to be (despite structural survey!) so here's my brain dump... Can you not find another contractor to do the whole job at a more reasonable price?  And you could work along side them and learn the ropes for the next time.

    If you're planning on doing most of the work yourself, make sure you are up to speed on all the compliance side of thing such as Construction (Design & Management) see here: https://www.hse.gov.uk/construction/cdm/2015/index.htm, whether you need a Build Over Agreement with the water company, is this under Permitted Development and if so, have you got a Building Control officer for sign off and will you need Planning Permission?  Do you need to have a Party Wall Agreement?  Fire regs?  If you're replacing doors/windows will they be FENSA certified?  Will you need to get a new EPC done? NAPIT Cert?

    Have you got a budget broken down into sections with all the necessary detail (with a contingency of 15%)?  Have you included waste removal?  Don't forget to factor in how you manage a trade not showing up on the agreed date and what flexibility you can build in so that you don't have other trades hanging around.  If you've found a good, reliable tradesperson, ask them who they recommend and like to work with in other trades as it will make things flow better (and saves you risking an un-tested person).  Also, if it has a garden, schedule that in for March/April so that it will look good by the time the refurb is finished.  Photograph everything in case you need it for evidence later (ie tax deductions, compliance, certification).  Get the people who do the gas and electrics to certify their work on completion as part of their fixed price.  I did a timeline on Excel and taped it to the wall in the property so everyone can refer to it and they all know what's supposed to be going on when (this doesn't mean to say they'll actually look at it but at least it's there).

    Where are you based?  I think this is quite scary to do without some support from someone who knows what they're doing.  Perhaps someone from PT or one of the other online support groups such as Progressive Property may offer to help/guide/mentor you if you're close to them?  

    Best of luck!

    Heather.

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    Hi Murray

    I am a tradesmen myself (electrician) and I'm glad you're giving this some thought! The amount of jobs we walk into and the client has hired all the trades separately and thrown them in the wrong order, and on top of each other through naivety or arrogance (that things can be done quicker because they say so!)

    Anyway this is roughly the order for a simple refurb should happen in

    Demolition work/strip out

    1st fix carpentry (stud walls, stairs etc)

    Electricians and plumbers/gas engineers 1st fix (not at same time, either can go first generally)

    Drywallers and plastering

    Carpentry and bathroom kitchen 2nd fix and flooring

    Electricians and plumbers second fix

    Decorating


    Ideally make a calendar of sorts that each trade can see with estimated time lines in. Nothing worse than a client asking for second fix to happen tomorrow please!


    Hope that's helpful



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    I would slightly disagree with electrician/plumbet 1st fix order being either.

    I suggest plumber 1st then electrician. This is to avoid plumbers putting pipes close to sockets points after the electricians.

    The times this has happened is unreal. The electrician discovers that too little space left between wires and pipes which leads to either having to move electrical points  at cost or inconvinience later on.

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    And, unless you have worked (I didn't) or trained in the building industry (I did), buy a good book such as the Housebuilder's bible, and read it, so you understand what to ask for and can judge quality. If you don't educate yourself it is likely to be an expensive project. Labour component costs will vary greatly depending on region.

    The project manager or main contractor's work is IMHO easy to underestimate. For example, besides working 8 hours per day doing my current refurb (I do many tasks myself), I also find I spend hours each evening and weekend doing detailed designs, procuring (right quality/best price) and researching/ thinking through how to do things like fitting a steel beam for example. If you choose to take on that role you ought to add the cost of that (for instance what you might earn if not doing this work yourself).

    Remember early completion will bring forward rent payments, so I lose some of these, but save on money paid to building trades.  


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