Meet Richard Choy, CEO of NATSPEC - AAA Sponsor. This month Richard offers some advice on how to protect your interests during your upcoming building project.
By Richard Choy, CEO NATSPEC
The lifting of movement restrictions will bring great opportunities but economic dangers to your projects. Your new home or major renovation may now be back on the drawing board with an expectation that, because many trades will be looking for work, your project will cost less. It may cost less, but will you be getting the value you expect?
When you buy a car, you make decisions regarding cost, looks, engine power, features, sustainability, and build quality. However, you expect all cars to satisfy regulatory requirements relating to safety and component quality. Unlike a car, each house is a prototype. If you buy a lemon, you cannot just return it and have it replaced. And, as with cars, poor workmanship discloses itself later on and is extremely expensive to fix.
The role of the architect is paramount to your project.
Balancing form and function, with consideration of cost and quality, is the foundation of architectural studies. As a friend said, “The smaller the budget, the more you need the architect to maximise the deliverables.” This is based on the architect's education and, more importantly, experience.
Sometimes the advice is simple and, for example, relates to the best orientation of the home to make the most of the sun or the view. However, orientation raises issues regarding glazing, including solar heat gain coefficient and acoustic insulation, which make the home more liveable. Getting just “a window” may be cheap – or expensive – but enhance neither the form nor function.
You now have the opportunity to have your dream home built, but who is acting as your policeman? You have your drawings outlining what, where and how many. You must have your building specification, such as NATSPEC, requiring fit-for-purpose (and legal) materials, components, and assemblies, erected or installed to good industry practice and acceptable tolerances. You need to engage your architect as the Project Administrator to ensure you are getting what you paid for. If you don't engage someone to look after your interests, you will have to accept what gets built, even if there is poor workmanship. You need the architect with you to go through the final inspection before releasing your money.
Your home is your most expensive investment. Use an architect to maximise your returns.
NATSPEC has been a proud supporter of the Australian Architecture Association for several years, sponsoring our organisations extensive range of walking tours.
NATSPEC is a national not-for-profit organisation that is owned by the design, build, construct and property industry through professional associations and government property groups. NATSPEC’s objective is to improve the construction quality and productivity of the built environment through leadership of information.
For over forty years, NATSPEC has been delivering the national, comprehensive construction specification system endorsed by government and professional bodies, the National Building Specification.
Consisting of specialist packages suitable for architects, building designers, interior designers, landscape architects, structural engineers, service engineers and domestic owners, the National Building Specification offers comprehensive solutions for all types of building projects.
To learn more, Click here and visit their website.
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- Article: Richard Choy
- Image: Richard Choy (Sourced from the writer)