Approximately 50% of construction work involves repair and refurbishment (figure taken from Building Cost Information Service) and as the building stock ages, this will grow.
It is key that before embarking on the refurbishment or repair of an existing building that there is a thorough understanding of its properties, both structural and building fabric. With this knowledge, correct diagnosis can be made (why is there damp?), as can informed decision making (can this wall be removed?).
A lack of awareness of a buildings characteristic is evident to most portfolios with incorrect detailing of rainwater goods or incorrect use of modern materials when repairing historic buildings leading to rapid deterioration and costly repairs. Conversely, the use of correct detailing and appropriate materials ensures durability of building stock.
With huge emphasis now on the environment and sustainability, it is being appreciated that refurbishment of existing buildings is a more sustainable approach to demolition and new build.
As Chartered Building Surveyors, we are experts in repairing and refurbing existing buildings.