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Monthly Archives: September 2016


Do You Need An Architect?

For many people the decision to take on a home renovation project can be both exciting, but also a bit daunting. It often represents quite a large financial investment and for those who aren’t in the building trade knowing where to start can be difficult. Add to that the pressure of needing to get it right as it’s not something that can often easily be changed afterwards without a sometimes serious additional cost. So where do you start? Is your project something that can be tackled on your own, or should you employ the services of an architect on top of the costs of your builder etc?

Architects can be employed to help you to design your project (this can be anything from a new build to a simple bathroom redesign) and can then draw up plans from which your builder will work. There is no legal requirement to use an architect on your project, as long as the finished product complies with building regulations, but there are some projects for which it is understood that using an architect can be advisable.

Advantages of employing an architect:

  • If your project requires planning permission they will have knowledge of the exact requirements for your project and can be invaluable in successfully navigating the local planning authority.
  • If you don’t know what you want, architects can help to give you ideas for how to transform your space. They will also plan the design down to the small details, such as which ways doors should open, which you may not think of.
  • Architects are subject to a statutory code of practice and have Professional Indemnity Insurance to protect their clients.

Disadvantages of employing an architect:

  • An architect’s fee can add up to 20% to the cost of a project, which can be out of the question for those on a tight budget.
  • Adding an architect into the mix can sometimes be one extra thing to deal with too far. Negotiating the relationship between your architect, builder and other contractors can sometimes prove more difficult than it needs to be.

However whether or not you employ an architect is up to you. Many people successfully take on comparatively large projects without the services of an architect. If you have a good idea of what you want and have a builder that you trust who has vision, then this could render the additional expense of an architect obsolete. So before you do anything, why not speak to the friendly experts at Wisecraft Ltd Bolton Builders today – we can come and discuss your project and offer a free and no obligation quote. So call us today – we love a chat – and the odd chocolate biscuit!


Published Date: 20th September 2016
Category: General, Handy Tips



What Are Building Regulations?

You may have heard the term ‘Building Regulations’ on TV property shows, but what does it actually mean and how do these affect you if you are thinking about taking on a building project? Read on and let your friendly Bolton builders at Wisecraft explain all (well nearly all – to explain all would be a somewhat lengthy tomb!).

In essence Building Regulations refer to the minimum standards for the design, construction and alteration to any building. These are standards that are developed by the Government and approved by Parliament and so must be adhered to. Ensuring that any building project complies with Building Regulations is the responsibility of the Buildings Inspector, who will have to inspect and sign off builds at certain stages of their construction.

Building Regulations are regularly updated and create standards that ensure safe and adequate foundations, damp-proofing, overall stability of the building, insulation, ventilation, heating, fire protection and means of escape in case of fire are provided in all buildings. They consist of 14 sections that cover:

  • Structure
  • Fire Safety
  • Site Preparation and Resistance to Contaminants and Moisture
  • Toxic Substances
  • Resistance to the Passage of Sound
  • Ventilation
  • Hygiene
  • Drainage and Waste Disposal
  • Combustion Appliances and Fuel Storage Systems
  • Protection from Falling, Collision and Impact
  • Conservation of Fuel and Power
  • Access to and Use of Buildings
  • Glazing Safety in relation to Impact, Opening and Cleaning
  • Electrical Safety

What happens if you do not comply to Building Regulations? If it is found that your building does not meet the Building Regulations then you will have to make necessary alterations (which in some cases can mean virtually starting from scratch) until it is deemed up to standard by the Buildings Inspector. If this is not done then the building will not be seen as fit for habitation (or whatever other use it has) and you will not be able to get insurance.

So, it pays to make sure that any building project complies with Building Regulations – talk to the experts builders at Wisecraft Ltd today to find out more.


Published Date: 1st September 2016
Category: General, Handy Tips


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