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Essential Information 1

Welcome to the Essential Information pages.
Below, we have tried to explain how maintenance costs are perceived by the average Client. If you find that you need further information about the issues raised, then please email us via psartin@btconnect.com or call us at +44(0) 1889 270866

It is a sad fact that many of the disappointing aspects of new commercial building construction and maintenance of not so new buildings, are the ongoing life-cycle costs of preventative maintenance and the deterioration of mechanical & electrical services. Sometimes sadly, these are latent defects from ‘first cost’.

Further considerable ongoing costs pertaining to the above are, “change of use” and how to adapt those services to “change of use”

If the above are not problems enough, the owner or tenant now has to tread carefully through a minefield of new and soon to be imposed, additional legislation. Much of which is directly associated with environmental issues.

We are only referring in this document to the limited, but costly business of maintaining HVAC systems which can represent up to 50% of the construction costs for the life-cycle of the building.

In new constructions an opportunity does exist to give consideration to the life-cycle costs, but rarely is this opportunity taken. Some finance initiatives in today’s construction process of building, cannot give value for money, in running costs or building life-cycle costs.

It is also a fact that some Developers, do not understand what has been installed for the HVAC services. They rely, quite properly, on the development team to take that responsibility. In our experience, it’s way down the installation trail that matters go astray and in the main, never comes home to roost until it all too late!

However most costs are as a result of existing buildings problems which occur when:

* Maintaining the HVAC installation
* Upgrading services
* Changing services specifications for “change of use”
* Poor value for money maintenance is discovered.
* Replacing worn out plant (Question: “do you replace like for like”)
* Skill shortages prevent proper maintenance.
* Some costs now and most certainly in the near future are environmentally based.
* How many owners of property or tenants trust the ‘out sourcing’ of maintenance to 3rd party facilitators, who themselves let out the “works” to smaller companies, who in turn ‘sub contract’ some of the “works” to self employed operatives?

“What’s wrong with that” you say, “that’s what we have to accept these days”

There are good companies out there………. and some not so good!

We are told that there are skill shortages. If a component is not installed correctly, is this acceptable because we lack “skilled” fitters/engineers?

No matter how good the argument is to sustain the above comment on skills, why should the investment placed in the Building; hang in the balance of skill shortages?

If any contractor enters into a commitment to fulfil a contractual obligation, then the skills excuse cannot be an acceptable reason for failure of the HVAC system.

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