All buildings, whether a small residential extension, or multi-level mixed use complex will have varying degrees of defects throughout the construction process. Typical construction contracts include time provisions and processes to allow for rectification of these defects. Additionally, mandatory warranty periods provide further confidence to the end-user should any defects arise post the contract period

Unfortunately at times there may be issues that persist or worsen, after the contractor has moved on, which can lead to complex and expensive resolutions. The most significant defects when it comes to construction are waterproofing issues that may lead to long term damage, fire concerns resulting from poor material choice or workmanship, and structural integrity leading to concerns over safety. All these defects can be difficult and expensive to rectify once a building is occupied, but can be easily avoided through independent expert consultants being allowed to design and document a project fully, careful and experienced workmanship, a focus on value rather than upfront cost, and competent on-site supervision.

Numerous methodologies exist to develop design and documentation, and ultimately deliver a building. Within each methodology, three main variables subsist; time, cost, and quality. Often these three variables may be in conflict, but it is the balance of these three that brings value to a project. The dilemma with many of the common methodologies is that a client often is required to give up control of one or more of these variables. A Cost Plus contract offers no control of time and cost, and a Design and Construct contract offers very limited control on quality. A traditional Construct Only contract has significant control on quality, and practical control on cost and project program.

The undesirable aspect of a Construct Only contract following full tender documentation of a project is that prior to a contractor being appointed, time may be impacted, and additional costs for variations to documents may be required following negotiations. This aspect can be overcome through appropriate value management, and design development conducted by knowledgeable professionals to deliver a product where everyone benefits, including the end user.

CBG Architects and Interior Designers view the contractor as an integral member of the team required to deliver a successful project. Early procurement of their services, and involvement during the design development stage allows for decisions and quality to remain under the client’s control. This method allows for improved cost certainty and value judgements to be made through recommendation and consideration of the consultant team, and time savings through limiting protracted tender and contract negotiations. Once construction has commenced under a Construct Only contract, the client can be confident with the contractual controls over product quality, time, and final budget. Construction will typically be smoother and less confrontational with fewer variations, as many queries and potential issues have been identified and resolved during the comprehensive design development and documentation phase, prior to commencement on site.

This process requires a collaborative approach from all consultants, including the contractor. This collaborative, honest, and open approach will benefit results for all parties without suspicion of one party looking to take advantage of another. Under CBG’s preferred procurement methodology all parties benefit and the result is a more valuable, higher quality product for the end-user.


CBG Architects and Interior Designers