I am a retired businessman, with plenty of managerial experience, but with no wish at all to manage a domestic building project. My experience tells me that such a project must be properly managed, but this needs to be done by an intermediary whose professional knowledge and expertise will be respected by the builder. When a project starts, all is sweetness and light, but it is not sensible to assume that there will be no tensions between homeowner and contractor as the work proceeds. For me, this is the most important reason for engaging and retaining the services of Selby Design.
A builder may be ready to undertake work with no intervening management, even drawing up plans and obtaining the necessary approvals, which may seem to be a cheaper route at the time, but without a professional intermediary the homeowner is vulnerable. It’s not that one should assume builders will cheat, but there will inevitably be differences of opinion as work proceeds, when something unexpected is discovered, or what was thought possible no longer is. Far better that these issues are dealt with on the owner’s behalf by a professional intermediary, both to secure the best outcome and – just as importantly – free the home owner from the emotional and psychological stress he or she might otherwise suffer.
This was my motivation in appointing Selby Design for the home extension my wife and I wanted. Selby did an excellent job of preparing the invitation to tender and obtaining all the permissions, but also oversaw the project, dealing directly with the contractor (with whom our relationship was also excellent) whenever an issue arose, as of course some did. My wife and I were kept informed and consulted as appropriate, knew we had someone putting our point of view whenever a conflict arose but, blissfully, were never drawn into arguments with the contractor. I would not do another project differently.
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