The pre-construction phase of any build project is a set of tasks that are taken before the actual construction begins.
This process is where the complete plan of a build project, the design, the materials used, the costs involved, permits and labor are determined.
This tends to be a multi faceted process with many aspects to go over. In this post, we will try to cover as much as we can. Pretty much in a nutshell.
Idea – Determining the concept and creating a design
The initial process of pre-construction is a set of meetings between the homeowner (the project owner) and the designer. The designer will discuss with the owner’s ideas and desires in these meetings and help determine a design concept for their build project.
This design over the duration of meetings will become more refined. Styles will be picked, finishes and amenities will be discussed.
The design team would use a computer aided drawing sim software, usually autodesk or blender or autocad to determine a simulated visual representation of what the homeowner’s ideas are.
Determining the budget for the project build
Once the idea and concept turns into a full out design, with materials, appliances, finishes and the like being determined, the design team has to go back and figure out a rough cost range of how much things will cost.
Usually a cost range is determined, however, the absolute cost will be determined in the bid phase.
Impact Studies – Feasibility
For some building projects, when you have to get approval from your town, for permits or approval from various boards, an environmental impact study will need to be submitted.
In the case of building a subdivided development or building an office park or strip mall, there are many things to be considered.
Traffic is one of them. How many more cars are going to be travelling through this road on a daily basis? Are we going to be able to handle traffic? Do we need to install more intersections with traffic lights? Are we going to have to put in an exit or entrance ramp?
Utilities as well. Is the electric grid going to be stressed with building all of these new homes? Are we going to strain the sewer and public water system? Do we need to charge a special assessment tax to recoup this or make the project owner pay for these?
Again, for the most part, this will not be the case. Usually if you are building a development or any large infrastructure that could affect the quality of life and flow.
What Materials is the owner of the project has desired to use?
In the design process, the homeowner has to make the determination of how to approach using different materials and understand the cost differences. For example with a kitchen, a GE Profile range is going to cost considerably less than a Vulcan or Wolf pro range. Or the use or corian countertops will have a dramatic look and feel difference from granite.
Calculating the costs for materials, permits, labor and the Request For Quote (RF Q)
Once the concept is designed and a rough cost expectation is made, the designer and homeowner send out a RFQ to prospective contractors and wait for a round of bids to show up by a set deadline. Each bid will have the materials, the labor involved and the costs of each along with a projected timeline and full description of the project.
Once the homeowner reviews and interviews each contractor, then a careful determination on which contractor should be hired.
Permits and Approvals
For projects such as building a home, remodeling or renovating a home will involve the need for getting the proper permits to do so.
Reason why towns will require a permit, so that to ensure that the process of constructing your home is being done so correctly and that all compliance with codes, ordinances and safety procedures. It is a layer of accountability from all parties to ensure best practices are in place.
Sometimes, permits are not the only requirements for build projects, but also to submit your project plans to the municipal planning board. The municipal planning board usually consists of a small committee that reviews your plan and will ask some questions about certain aspects.
The planning board could ask about public utilities, what is the property being used for, are you complying with ordinances and more.
Once you receive their blessing and pay whichever fees you are liable for, then you will receive the necessary approvals and permits required to proceed.
The next step – Building
Once all of these steps are completed, the planning, blueprints, the costs of labor and materials, the permits, approvals and bid process. The build process starts. Following that entire plan that was conceptualized in the pre-construction phase.
The Pre-Construction phase is an essential part of the process of building, rather it is new construction or remodeling. This hopefully will help you understand all of the moving parts before the first nail is driven in or a sledge hammer busts through drywall.