Execution of any construction project calls for competency because of the complex nature of projects. If anything is left to chance, then the possibility of fatalities or accidents is likely to occur. As I have mentioned before in one of my articles, construction remains to be one of the most regulated industries because of the impact it has towards habitation in general. It, therefore, requires experienced and qualified personnel for its execution.
To a large extent, the team involved in a construction project is guided by The Joint Building Council. It highlights what needs to be done and the relationship between the different parties.
Have you ever thought of the different people involved in a construction project? Well, we have highlighted the different personalities and the skill set they need to possess to effectively and professionally handle their scopes of work.
1. A Land Surveyor
A surveyor correctly identifies the location of your piece of land. They can determine where your land ends and where the next begins. There are majorly two types of surveys;
a) Topographical survey -This is used to identify and map the ground contours (terrain) and existing natural and human-made features such as trees, roads, and powerlines. For gated community developments, it is used to produce the base map used in master planning.
b) A Cadastral Survey – This establishes the real property boundaries and beacons on the respective plots especially for a vast tract of land that is being subdivided.
If you have a plot and need to establish its existence, you can always get a survey map. Most people will tend to ignore the services of a surveyor to avoid costs. To prevent, building a section of your house on another person’s piece of land, it’s always a profound idea to have a surveyor correctly identify your site.
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Surprisingly, real estate agent sellers may sub-divide land cheekily by installing “fake beacons.” Always have your surveyor coordinate with the surveyor of the real estate agent selling you land. Most land sellers are business people who are keen on sales and may rarely care about the struggles you will face with adjacent landowners in the future, including the loss of significant sections of your property.
2. An Architect
This is the lead consultant in any construction project as stipulated in the Agreement and Conditions of Contract for Building Works (JBC Agreement). They have the responsibility of coming up with a design for your house. They give your structure the feel and the aesthetic they need to have that internal and external appeal.
The contractor is required to build a structure to the satisfaction of the architect, who is the lead consultant.
Please note the following
Contractors usually are paid for works done. The person responsible for valuing the works done so that the amount payable to the contractor is established is a quantity surveyor.
However, the architect approves the works to be paid. They have to confirm that the said works are to their satisfaction. Once the architect goes through the valuation and is happy with the job, they then issue a payment certificate which is issued to the client for payment.
A contractor implements a project based on the contract documents provided to them.These documents are: the Bills of Quantities which have the specifications of the materials to be used, architectural and structural drawings that show the layouts as well as the specifications.
Construction works are not straightforward and one anticipates a lot of unforeseen eventualities. Once there is a complication, and the client or any other party feels that a particular aspect of the design need to change then the architect contractually is supposed to issue an instruction, to be effected by the contractor. Structural engineers are given the responsibility of issuing instructions on structural issues.
Always request your architect to produce a practicing certificate which is issued by the Board of Registration of Architects and Quantity Surveyors of Kenya (BORAQS)
3. A Civil/Structural Engineer
The structural engineer is the professional who makes sure that whatever design is being implemented is structurally sound. That it can bare the load to be imposed on it. (This is the strength of the structure) They also supervise the structural design and instruct the contractor on structural aspects that need amendments.
Registration of Engineers is done by the Engineers Board of Kenya (EBK).
4. A Services Engineer
A services engineer designs for services. These are mechanical and electrical works for a particular project. Mechanical works include plumbing works. The service engineer has a lot of other services that they can provide like air conditioning works, structured cabling, firefighting, alarms, access controls, CCTV, teleconferencing and the like.
5. A Quantity Surveyor
This is the professional who comes up with the cost/estimate of developing a structure. They are registered by the Board of Registration of Architects and Quantity Surveyors of Kenya (BORAQS).
Normally, they are the custodian of the contract (Agreement and Conditions of Contract for Building Works (JBC Agreement). They value works done by the contractor for payments. They also manage the cost of a structure so that it remains within budget or can know the extent of variations from the original budget.
6. An Interior Designer
Interior designing is slowly catching up, and many people have started to appreciate the contribution it has on habitable and well-designed working places. It’s not a very common profession as architects have always played the role of an interior designer in construction projects. They are responsible for coming up with modern, usable workplaces that are ambient and fun to work in. They are very artistic and are said to possess “a third eye” and have a very likable taste.
If you are thinking about developing a house, then you need to get the input of the team members above. It’s essential so that you have a clear picture of what you will have at the end. They also have the legal responsibility of assisting you with the relevant permits required by local authorities.