Planning & Design Stage

Supporting clients through RIBA Stages 2 &3 - The Planning & Design Stage

It is in the RIBA Planning and Design stages that a Quantity Surveyor’s expertise comes to the fore in undertaking a number of critical tasks that impact development costs.

During this stage, AG Surveying will commence detailed cost planning, review and discuss various design solutions and construction methods, carry out value engineering, and create / refine the most efficient procurement strategy.

Initial Cost Plan

Our expert team of Quantity Surveyors will prepare an initial cost plan at this stage, considering various methods of construction and undertaking a critical review of these construction methods in a bid to achieve cost savings.

The client will receive:

  • Detailed, itemised and measured cost plan based on current scheme and responses to our requirements queries 
  • Detailed measurements of all core elements, with market rates used to calculate an approximate price 

If deemed appropriate, additional work can go into the cost plan, to include:

  • Obtaining specialist supplier or contractor prices for specialist works or products (budget allowances to be made for these works / works we don't have rates for)
  • Updating cost plan based on new design information, new or alternative employers requirements
  • Attending meetings to review the Cost Plan
  • Splitting out costs per unit or unit type. This can be quoted as an extra over if required
  • Provide a written cost plan report explaining the basis of the cost plan, procurement route and OH&P parameters assumed, baseline dates assumed etc.

Value Engineering

Another significant role Quantity Surveyors will play at this stage is in value engineering. The team at AG Surveying will explore alternative design options to ensure that the highest value is extracted within the project’s budget constraints. Working with architects, we ensure that every alternative proposal is financially viable before design options are presented to the client.

Procurement of Designs & Surveys

AG Surveying can support with the procurement of designs and surveys where an extra level of detail is required.

The client will need to determine whether their project is best served by the production of large quantities of 2D information, or whether the use of 3D technologies are valid alongside more traditional deliverables.

We always ensure that the most suitable and cost-efficient procurement approach is selected.


Construction Technique & Material Cost Advice

AG Surveying will work with the design team to advise on materials and construction techniques that support the client’s vision, brief and budget, including recommendations on sustainable materials to meet environmental objectives.

If offsite manufacturing or other modern methods of construction are deemed suitable, it is essential that these are embedded into the design from the outset and are implicit in the Project Brief.

At this stage, having a clear idea of construction techniques and material costs will enable architects and designers to create an accurate design that is both viable and within budget.

Programme of works

We are able to produce a development programme setting out the various design, procurement and construction stages, milestones and critical paths to get all involved in the project tied and brought into, to aid in the smooth and effective running and management of the project

Early Specialist Engagement

Determine with the project team the early delivery of Stage 4 information that might improve the design team’s effectiveness for procurement purposes. For example, providing the scope for a particular specialist element of works or the detail design for a complex aspect of the project, such as the cladding. This will reduce the contractor’s and cost plans need for assumptions, providing a more accurate tender return / cost plan depending on at what RIBA stage the contractor is procured.

The benefits of working with AG Surveying in the Planning & Design Stage

At this stage of the project, AG Surveying aims to support the development of the design concept in line with the client’s vision, brief and budget, before beginning to prepare detailed information required for construction.

Our shared objective is to avoid all but the most minor of iterations by RIBA Stage 4 and to make sure that the client’s planning application is based on the best possible information.

Our involvement guarantees effective cost control throughout the design and planning stages, allowing creativity and budget-friendly solutions to develop in tandem, and serving to improve collaboration between project teams based on an early-established, mutual understanding.

Ultimately, at this stage, we have the most scope to reduce development costs and enhance the client’s return on investment.