In general terms with house construction, the more you cover up the more likely it will be that things can go wrong and undetected until it is too late unless. Proper planning and supervision is essential! For example, concealed WC cisterns and in more recent years Underfloor Heating Systems (as opposed to traditional wet or dry systems) have become more popular with self-builders and renovators looking to improve the heating efficiency of their home.
Here is some advice to avoid expensive problems further down the line with your underfloor heating.
First ensure that the Designer chooses a system which is well recognised in the building industry and has all the relevant certification and check what Warranties/Guarantees will be provided by the manufacturer, supplier and installation contractor once the work has been completed. Don’t forget to make sure that you have a written contract with your Designer and that he has Insurance should he incorrectly advise you! Read more ›
What’s the cheapest alternative to meet the ROI Building Regulations’ renewables requirement for a new build? How about a retrofit?
In a new build situation, the payback with a heat pump should be three to five years at the most. The marginal cost of installing a heat pump, appropriate cylinder and potentially larger radiators is likely to be similar to the fossil fuel alternative. This is because a gas + connection to grid (and associated developer infrastructure) or oil + tank will require the addition of photovoltaics to comply with Part L of the Building Regulations.
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We would like to wish all of our clients and suppliers a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2018!
Thank you for your continued support in 2017, we are looking forward to working with you in 2018.
The Self-Build Zone Team
The moment you become a landowner, you’re liable for what happens on your plot. Self-Build Zone’s Paul Kempton explains how to protect your new property.
Once you’ve completed the conveyancing and bought your plot of land, no matter whether you’re ready to build now or at some stage in the future, you become responsible for the land. Technically, this means you’ve assumed liability for everything on it. The ‘it will never happen to me approach’ won’t help you when problems occur, so it’s vital to ensure you’re protected from day one.
Is my self-build plot covered?
If you happen to live next door to your proposed building site, don’t assume that your current household insurance will cover you. If the plot is registered separately then it won’t be part of this policy. You therefore need to make sure that you genuinely have adequate insurance cover against any claims that might be brought against you.
Be thorough when checking this out: apart from the actual legal liability for accidents or other issues, you need to ensure the costs incurred in defending any actions are also covered. We live in an increasingly litigious world, and defending claims can be a lengthy and expensive process. Having a suitable, dedicated insurance policy in place will mean you know you and your plot are protected. Read more ›
Buying a site without permission in the hope you’ll get it later is very high risk and not advisable for most self-builders. Instead, once you’ve found a plot or conversion opportunity, get hold of the planning permission documents before you part with any cash.
You must be sure that the permission is still valid and will let you build what you want, so establish the scope for any changes you might have in mind. The estate agent or seller should be able to supply photocopies of the permission documents – application forms, plans and drawings and the council’s decision. If not, armed with the address or reference number of the permission, you should be able to find them on the council’s website. Read more ›