Where to start?

Whether you are thinking about refurbishing premises or acquiring new, wdl will offer an introductory consultation to explain if and how we can help. If appointed, we would then work with you to develop a Brief and agree a design direction before producing drawings etc.

Why do I need a designer?

wdl has the experience to help make your project practical, achievable and cost-effective. We will take time to understand your brief and help develop it. We can also offer guidance on how to spend the budget effectively to achieve the best results possible.

What if I am not sure of what I want?

wdl are experienced at space planning and visualising in various forms, so even if you are not totally sure of what is achieveable, we will have suggestions to overcome problems and limitations and help decide what is possible.

How much will my project cost?

Without accurate details to give accurate prices, we can often arrive at reasonable estimates based on experience of similar projects. This is often sufficient to progress through the early stages of a project before critical decisions are required.

As part of our design service we can offer a process of cost analysis; often called value engineering; which means when costs exceed budget we can review and find ways of reducing costs without heavily compromising the design.

How much do we charge?

Sometimes our fees are based on a percentage of the applicable build cost or sometimes an estimate of time charges. We can assess the amount of work required and calculate fees and costs based on this. We always try to find the best solution for your project and then work out a way of achieving it within your Budget. We will always provide you with a fee proposal, which states clearly the scope of work we will undertake, before running up a bill. We try to operate with a “no surprises” policy.

How long will my project take?

How long have you got? It is important to plan enough thinking time into your project, particularly for yourself when asked to decide upon space planning, style and costs. A rushed programme can mean increased costs and restrictions on the materials you want. A design can be compromised if limited to only those materials available in time. We will always try to accommodate your timescale but our design process is only a part of the overall project. Time must also be allowed to obtain statutory approvals and permissions, contract tenders, the construction itself and delivery of essential equipment, furnishings and fittings.

What permissions and approvals will I need?

The type of approvals depend on the nature of the work to be carried out and the location of the property. We can submit the applications for you; Planning Permission, Listed Building Consent, Advertising Consent and so on; but most work will also require Building Regulations Approval, either from the Local Authority or from an approved Inspector. You will also have a Health and Safety obligation under the CDM Regulations.

How do I find good contractors?

There is no substitute for experience and where this can`t be first hand, then recommendation from a trusted source is important. That said, we will work with any building contractor or supplier, who are experienced, professional and can be proved capable of implementing designs correctly.

Will I have to close my building during the project?

It is almost impossible to refurbish a building without closing some parts at some point during the programme. It is often easier to close temporarily to complete the project quickly. However, if the business can`t afford to close, and the building is large enough, the work can be carried out in phases.

T: +44 (0)113 262 3777