It’s nice to see one of our clients’ self-builds get such great coverage. We started working with Tracey & Stephen Stewart in early 2015. The house features as the cover story for the February edition of Build It Magazine and it’s nice to see the lighting featured so prominently in a self-build project. More than that though, it’s got some good learnings for anyone planning a self-build project.
Not everything runs smoothly in a self-build. This build had its fair share of issues and the article pulls out three key learning points under the heading “We learned…”
“We thought ahead” – No matter how long you’ve been waiting for your project to start, no matter how tortuous the planning has been, stop, think and plan. The Stewarts talk about installing cabling for entertainment systems. Not necessarily for now but making future provision. It’s sometimes said that the most expensive cable is the one you didn’t pull so it’s worth thinking about how your needs might change over time and work with your design and construction team to give yourself some flexibility. One lighting application of this approach is making provision for lighting artwork. You might not know exactly what you might want to light in the future but it’s usually possible to identify potential artwork locations.
“Visit previous projects” – One of the bumpier parts of this story is the initial choice of builder. Having been burned at that stage our clients determined to make sure they research any contractors they brought onto the project. “We checked out both our lighting designer and main contractor to inspect the quality of work and find out more about the service past customers experienced”. It’s good advice and we’re pleased we passed the test.
“Maintain good relationships” – The article talks about the importance of maintaining good relationships with neighbours. That’s solid advice and we’d extend it. It’s important to maintain good relationships across your build team. A building project takes time. It’s much more productive to have a happy design and construction team. Clear communication and good documentation coupled with a good main contractor helps hugely and helps keep everyone pointing in the right direction. “The electrician was initially a little worried as he’d not had great experiences with designers in the past, but as soon as he started working with Brilliant Lighting’s project manager, Russ, he changed his mind completely…Key to the success of this part of the scheme was the quality of the drawings and the consideration that had gone into ensuring the wiring was practical”
The February edition of Build It is out now. Grab a copy and and have a look at this wow factor self-build.
Build It Magazine – Build It is a very practical publication aimed at the Self-Build sector. It’s an excellent resource for anyone planning to build their own home.
LamburnGeekie – LamburnGeekie get a very good write up in this article. They’re an Oxfordshire based construction company with an impressive body of work on their website.