Vitex Construction Our Story.
Vitex Construction was originally founded in Poland, but moved to the UK in 1999. Since then, we have worked for a range of residential and commercial clients in London, Berkshire and Surrey. Many have become repeat clients as a result of the high standards we deliver.
We handle projects of any size, but we have always maintained a small business mentality when it comes to customer service. That means you get a personal, hands-on approach providing peace of mind that the job is being done – and being done well.
Estimates & Quotations
1.0. Initial Consultation Meeting
We will arrange a meeting at a convenient time for you where we can discuss the following:
- The building project you have in mind
- Any specific services you would like provided by us
- Any individual and personal ideas you may have
- Any suggestions we have to make based on our past experience
- Your anticipated budget for the project
1.1. Provision of Quotes and Estimates.
Based on the discussions during our initial consultation meeting, we will provide you with the following:
- A fully Itemised quotation for planning and design. This will include all planning and design work including any required planning application and associated fees.
- An estimate for the construction works. Please note that at this stage it would be unprofessional to provide you with a fixed quotation for any of the building work as, until full planning permission has been granted, we will not know what construction work will be allowed.
- In our experience, estimates will usually be within a 20% range of any subsequent quotation and are therefore extremely useful in informing you of the likely budget involved and enabling you to assess the financial feasibility of the project..
1.2. Acceptance Only of Design and Architectural Services Quotation.
Once you have received our written quotation for the design, architectural services and planning application, together with the estimate of building costs, you should be in a position to decide if you wish to proceed with the next stage of the project. We will, of course, be happy to answer any queries you may have once you receive the quotation and estimate.
If you are happy to proceed to Stage Two, then you will only be required to sign a contract for our design and architectural services. At this stage there is no contract to sign for the building costs so you are not committed to any additional financial outlay.
Planning & Contracts
2.0. Design Meetings
During this stage you will meet with the Architect best suited to your project to discuss the design and layout in detail. The main goal for this meeting is for the architect to establish exactly what it is you want to achieve. Aside from those needed for the planning application, the architect will draw up a set of concept drawings of the proposed construction work.
2.1 Planning Drawings & Application
Following the design meeting and any subsequent consultations, the architect will prepare a set of drawings and documents that will be required to be submitted alongside the planning application. The requirements for plans and information to obtain planning permission vary from one local authority to the next, but you may rest assured the architect handling your project will know exactly what will be required.
2.2 Planning Consent & Conditions
Obtaining planning consent approval is a critical stage of any construction project. However, there are occasions when planning permission will only be granted subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions. Such conditions can be wide ranging, but examples include using opaque/frosted glass in a window in an extension that directly overlooks your neighbour, re-routing drainage, widening access to the property, etc. Some conditions have to be fulfilled at the beginning of a construction project, while others during or after the main construction work takes place. You will. Of course, be advised of any conditions attached to your planning consent and any associated implications.
2.3 Quotation for building work
After detailed planning approval has been granted and any associated conditions discussed with you, the architect will have a final discussion with you on the proposed construction work. We will then provide you with a detailed, written quotation, based on the schedule of works created by the architect.
After you have approved our quotation, we will prepare a set of documents for both parties (you and Vitex Construction Ltd.) to sign. These documents will include the timelines, payment terms and finally the contract. Once you are satisfied with all aspects of the project and the associated costs, both parties will sign the contract, after which the project will proceed to the pre-construction phase.
3.0 Structural Drawings & Calculations
Any works involving what is referred to the envelope of the building (the foundations, walls and roof) will require additional drawings and calculations from a structural engineer. We will consult with the structural engineer and provide a detailed structural package for you. This will usually be required as part of any Party Wall Agreement or where consent from the freeholder is required if you are living in a leasehold property.
3.1 Party Wall Agreements
Party wall agreements are particularly common in London and surrounding counties where terrace housing exists, whether the properties were built in the Georgian or Victorian era, or even more recently. A neighbour cannot, by law, object to any structural alterations providing they do not encroach upon their property. However, there is usually a shared wall between you and your neighbour and if the planned building work to your property involves any part of the party wall, you will be required to establish a party wall agreement. It is not a complicate d or costly procedure, and can take anything between two or three days up to three months depending on how amenable your neighbour is. Our advice is that if any of the proposed building work is going to involve the party wall, the earlier you approach your neighbour the better. We can advise you on what you need to do or say.
3.2 Approvals from Freeholder (only for leasehold properties)
This stage only applies if you own a leasehold property. More than likely, you will need the approval of the freeholder before you can carry out any structural alterations to your property. This may involve the creation of various documents which could include a Risk Assessment and Method Statement, construction plans and structural surveys. This can be arranged by our team upon request.
3.3 Meet the team
At this stage you will get to meet the project manager who will be your main point of contact throughout the project. This is also the time when you can to meet the on-site team which will be undertaking all the work. This is also a good time to discuss what preparations you may need to carry out prior to commencement of the work, such as clearing rooms of furniture, etc.
You will receive a copy of all project documentation, usually via email. You will be provided with any updates to this documentation as the project progresses.
4.0 Pre commencement meeting.
Prior to the construction/building work commencing, we will have a final meeting with you to discuss such specifics as parking, waste management, etc. We will also arrange and agree with you how best to communicate with you throughout the project.
4.1 Health and Safety.
In accordance with Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 (CDM, 2015) as a principal contractor we are obliged to create a Health & Safety file which we will keep religiously up to date throughout duration of the project. Depending on the nature of the project, you may be required to appoint a Health & Safety coordinator/executive – we will advise you accordingly and will help with this if required. Otherwise, we, as a principal contractor will appoint a coordinator/executive.
4.2 Interior Design
If the project requires input from an interior designer, then you are free to appoint one, or we will appoint one we have worked with in the past and who we know will be best suited to your project. We will work with the interior designer throughout the duration of the project.
4.3 Project Management
Having a single point of contact means that any revised instructions or messages you have will be efficiently delivered to the right people. Weekly site meetings will be held to discuss the project, which will also enable you to discuss the progress of the project and propose any amendments/alterations if appropriate. Depending on the size and scope of the project, the project architect can be appointed as the project coordinator. In this instance you can discuss many aspects of the project with them, and they will be responsible for liaising with the Project Manager. In many instances the architect will be the ideal person to answer many usual queries and therefore minimizing the decision-making burden for you.
4.4 Construction Work
Throughout the project, all on-site work will be professionally managed by our experience foreman and site manager. Our carefully chosen on-site teams have been working with us for many years, as have the majority of Vitex Construction staff and many of our staff are in house directly employed in-house. This enables us to work as a well-coordinated team and achieve the highest of standards when it comes to the work itself.
5.0 Practical Completion
Once all the work has been completed, we will arrange a final meeting with your local authority’s Building Control in order to obtain a completion certificate. Additionally, the Project Manager will go over all the work that has been completed with you to ensure you are totally satisfied with everything.
5.1 Handover and Snagging.
Prior to this the meeting we’ll prepare a file with manual guarantees and other related documents. We will run through the instructions for any appliances which have been fitted by us during the project e.g., kitchen appliances, gas boiler, etc. Finally, we will go through all the work we have carried out with you and where necessary create a list of snagging items which will be passed on to the on-site teams to rectify.
Once you have confirmed you are happy with the work we have completed, we will issue you with the appropriate guarantees for that work, which will range between 12 months and ten years in length. In addition, if any appliances have been fitted as part of the project, we will activate any third-party guarantees on your behalf.
5.3 Aftercare and Maintenance
As a building company we are committed to providing the best service possible. We are aware that both the structure of your property as well as appliances such as a gas boiler require regular inspections. We have a specialist Property Maintenance department and we will be more than happy to create an annual maintenance package, meaning you will not have to worry about scheduling inspections for any of your appliances, or to have your guttering checked, as we will arrange everything for you.