Contract administrator and their role

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While it’s perfectly understandable that cost plays a huge role in building your new house or doing an extension of any type, it is crucial to consider hiring a contract administrator or CA. This can be an architect that you already know who handled your planning application and supplied drawings or you could find a local quantity surveyor with extensive knowledge in construction industry. So why is this so important? There are a number of benefits that they may bring to the table including:

  1. They will have your best interests at heart
  2. It’s common that they will deal with your chosen contractor or recommend someone they dealt with already
  3. All cost comparison would be done by them and a best choice in their opinion brought forward for your consideration
  4. Full account management and site meetings can be part of the service if you decide to opt in
  5. They will hopefully take most of the stress out of the process, leaving you to stay focused on what is the most important and more enjoyable

How do I find someone good to do this for me? The process of selecting a trustworthy CA is very similar to finding a builder or a company.

  • Check their company name online and
  • Accreditations such as RICS or RIBA should be as standard
  • Ask for their portfolio with references
  • Compare costs with at least 3 different companies
  • Check what’s being offered within their quote, this must be clear and written in plain English

What sort of fees should I expect to see? This will depend on many factors including size of the company, their reputation and track record. On average, you’ll be looking at about 7-10% of the total construction contract for the role of a CA including all responsibilities that come with it.

What if I decide to save the cost and try to deal with it all on my own? This can be an option but be warned that it’s very time consuming, stressful if you are not familiar with the industry and quite technical, where you might struggle to cope with clauses and the legal side of things. You will need to read a lot of literature to be prepared and talk to at least few people who done it by themselves.

The process of building your own house is hard enough on it’s own, so try not to complicate things from the outset and get someone experienced on the job to be able to take on daily challenges and make sure they have your vision clear in their mind.

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