We are getting strong enquiries from builders looking for projects right now which is telling of the current market. When builders are actively looking for work it means they are keen and competitive - a perfect time to put your project out to tender. One of the advantages of using an architect is that you can send your working drawings out to a number of different builders and get alternative prices for your house or renovation.
With oil and gas projects coming online over the next 24 months, it is unclear how build prices will be affected by trades disappearing up north, but it seems there is a window right now where you can get things built in a normal competitive environment.
Tendering can take on a few different forms -
1. advertising in the paper to all builders and then creating a shortlist,
2. calling for registrations of interests from a large group and then refining the list, or
3. inviting a small group of known builders to tender.
You can make the tender process open, where the tenders are opened in front of all the tenderers on the tender date, or closed, where tenders are assessed by your architect and then a recommendation put forward for a preferred tenderer.
Another way to approach the pricing of your project is to work with one selected builder in an 'open book' scenario where their builder's margin is known and all their trade prices are out on the table for discussion and refinement, prior to signing a contract.
Your architect can help you with all of these processes to help get you the best possible value for money in your building project.