How To Keep Construction Costs Down, When Prices Are Going Through The Roof?



Keeping Construction costs down when prices are going through the roof? How can surveyors control costs in roofing and refurbishment projects.

There’s no hiding from the rising cost of living in the UK.

Construction is no different, and if anything has been impacted by rising costs more than most sectors.

Covid, Brexit and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have all in their own right thrown a chunky sized spanner into cost stability within the sector.

Whilst factors out of our control have impacted the cost of construction, there are ways Designers and Specifiers can keep costs down.

With over 40,000 construction projects aborted in 2021 the influence consultants have in ensuring projects make it to site is huge.

Over the last 36 months, we’ve looked back at a variety of different projects and shared how project planners can insert their influence to ensure that construction projects proceed as planned and costs don’t spiral out of control.

Performance Specifications35% Cost Saving

  • Move away from product led specifications and instead put forward clear performance based metrics on system requirements.
  • In doing you are opening up competition and allowing contractors to shop around for the best value products that meet the desired criteria, guarantee and suitability.

In 2022 alone we have found that performance specifications save the end client over 35% on overall project costs, without compromising quality. Contractors have years of experience trying, installing and comparing systems and products. So being open to alternatives that meet the criteria required can benefit all parties. .

Cost Increase Contingencies – 5% Cost saving

  • Include “Cost Increase Contingencies” at tender stage. In doing so, outline that any material increases will need to be evidenced and justified.
  • This prevents delays caused by avoiding the need to collect additional financing, during which costs are likely to increase again.

It’s now almost certain that costs submitted 90 days ago will have increased, with suppliers struggling to predict where things will be in 30 days’ time, let alone longer. Having small contingencies enables projects to commence as planned and avoids incurring additional costs due to delayed commencement.

Timeframes – 10% Cost Saving

  • External Refurbishment works are in higher demand in the summer months. However they can be undertaken all year round. Costs are likely to be inflated in peak periods due to greater demand for labour and materials.
  • If projects can be delayed (not too long) or started earlier, then costs may be kept down.

A Stitch in Time -55% Cost Saving

  • Many refurbishment projects end up costing significantly more as decisions to undertake works are only made when roofs are leaking badly, or walls or falling down. By this stage significant damage to the building structure has occurred.
  • Flat roofs that have exceeded their life expectancy can be overlaid for a fraction of the price if caught early enough.
  • On average overlaying a roof will cost less than half of what removing and renewing in full, and where suitable overlaying the roof itself will offer the same life expectancy and guarantee lengths.

We work with clients across all sectors from tender to delivery stage, to provide impartial and unbiased advice as to the best value solutions available for refurbishment projects.

Our recommendations are performance based on the long term desired outcomes of the client.

We are able to provide a variety of specifications that can be incorporated into tender documents to ensure that clients are keeping construction costs down during times when costs seem to be uncontrollable. We do this without ever compromising on quality or safety.

If you’re planning projects and would like to discuss ways in which costs can be kept under control, get in touch with one of team to see how we can help.

*Data based on comparison of traditional pitched, felt and liquid waterproofing projects compiled since June 2019 and June 2022.

This article, as with all other articles we produce, is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute formal advice and should not be relied upon as such. For bespoke, unbiased advice relating to your commercial roofing project please contact us and we would be pleased to assist.

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