Building Surveying

RLB benefits from having a large team of chartered building surveyors, and mechanical and electrical engineers based within our regional offices, providing advice for built assets and investments, nationally and internationally.

Our services span all sectors. We have a robust track record of advising on multi-million pound structures and estates, through to modest adaptations, extension, new build, repairs and reporting upon buildings of all ages including structures of architectural and historic importance.

When providing advice, we work closely with our clients to tailor our reporting to suit their needs, in flexible and innovative ways. This ensures our services are communicated clearly, to suit the audience.

We have developed a number of platforms, such as RLB Field, which proves invaluable in all types of data collection and reporting on large estates. It ensures accuracy and a fully addressable database, enabling specific and detailed reporting on the elements of an asset.

This brings benefits in trend analysis, driving economies in innovative approaches to estate asset management.

Our building surveyors and mechanical and electrical engineers bring commercial awareness and ability, ensuring we are adding maximum value to built assets on many tasks including:

  • carrying out feasibility studies
  • space utilisation planning and churn to maximise efficiencies
  • advising on modern methods of construction
  • determining the condition of buildings, identifying and analysing defects, including proposals for repair and on-going maintenance costs of individual buildings and estates
  • advising on energy efficiency, life cycle costing and environmental impact
  • reporting upon and instructing on the preservation/conservation of historic buildings
  • advising on schemes and projects and determining requirements
  • preparing scheme designs with costing, programmes for completion and specifications of work
  • organising documents for tender, and advising on appointing contractors, designers and procurement routes
  • ensuring projects are completed on budget and to schedule
  • fund and development monitoring, including independent certifier roles
  • quality monitoring, technical due diligence and compliance inspections
  • advising on the management and supervision of maintenance of buildings
  • dealing with planning applications and advising on property legislation and building regulations
  • assessing and designing buildings and adaptations to meet the needs of people with disabilities
  • negotiating dilapidations (when there is a legal liability for a property’s state of disrepair)
  • advising on the compliance and health and safety aspects of a building
  • advising on boundary and rights of lights disputes, and party wall procedures
  • preparing insurance assessments, valuations and claims
  • pre-acquisition and disposal surveys

Health & Safety and CDM Services

RLB provides a comprehensive range of health and safety consultancy services. Our team of Health & Safety professionals provide our clients with advice and assistance, to help achieve compliance with their statutory duties under existing health and safety legislation, including management of Health & Safety Regulations 1999 and CDM 2015, for construction projects, maintenance and repair works.

Our Health & Safety professionals are registered on the HSE’s approved Health & Safety Consultants Register (OHSCR), and hold recognised qualifications and accreditations, including Chartered Fellow members of IOSH, Fellow members of APS and Chartered members of RICS and / or CIOB.

Our experts are active members of industry working groups such as DIOHAS, CIOB H&S Advisory Group, APS SSIP Practice group, observers at CONIAC, and advisers to HSE for FFI Disputes panel.

Our practitioners provide training and are experienced in the delivery of IOSH, APS, CITB accredited training programs as well as a range of bespoke health and safety management and CDM15 courses.

Our services include:

  • Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems, advice, monitoring and audits
  • Due Diligence and Gap Analysis
  • Property and Real Estate Asset Assessments
  • Roof Risk Assessments
  • Property Risk Assessments
  • Fire Safety Risk Assessments
  • Fire Safety
  • Fire Safety Policies
  • Fire Safety Risk Assessment (FSRA)
  • FSRA audits and reviews
  • Fire Safety Evacuation plans (General)
  • Business Continuity planning and Emergency Preparedness plans
  • Asbestos Survey Reports and Management Plan Reviews
  • Legionella Control and Reviews
  • Accident and Incident Systems and Investigations
  • Expert Witness services
  • Monitoring – audits, inspections and surveys
  • Maintenance Access Strategies
  • Transport and Security
  • Procurement and review/ revision of contracts
  • Development / review of existing policies and management systems
  • Construction Design and Management (CDM) services

Construction Design and Management Services

RLB has successfully provided Construction Design and Management (CDM) services since the CDM Regulations were introduced in 1994. We provide these services to a wide range of clients and have the resources, systems, and flexibility to deliver projects ranging from minor refurbishments to major complex regeneration projects.

Our expertise includes:

  • Independent Client Adviser (ICA)
  • Principal Designer (PD)
  • Principal Designer Adviser (PDA)
  • Competence assessment of organisations and / or individuals to carry out the duties of Principal Designer, Designer, Principal Contractor and Contractor
  • CDM Regulations 2015 bespoke training, including two-day Principal Designer Course and advice (accepted by professional bodies and developed and delivered by IOSH and CITB accredited tutors)

RLB is committed to:

  • Making occupational health and safety an integral part of managing construction projects
  • Identifying hazards and associated risks, as early in the design stage as possible
  • Encouraging cooperative and collaborative working between all parties
  • Fully engaging all duty holders in the principles of prevention
  • Improving occupational health and safety project planning
  • Reducing unnecessary paperwork and promoting better communication, consultation and collaboration.

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC)

In England and Wales, Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are required for most non-domestic buildings larger than 50 square metres.

The EPC shows the energy efficiency rating; the rating is shown on an A–G rating scale similar to those used for electrical appliances.

The EPC includes recommendations on how to improve energy efficiency.

There is no statutory requirement to carry out any of the recommended energy efficiency measures.

EPCs for non-dwellings must be produced by an accredited, non-domestic energy assessor, who is a member of a government-approved accreditation scheme.

The seller or landlord must provide an EPC free of charge to a prospective buyer or tenant at the earliest opportunity. A copy of the EPC must also be provided to the successful buyer, or the person who takes up the tenancy.

Estate agents and other third parties must ensure that an EPC has been commissioned, before they  market a property for sale or rent.

In addition, all advertisements in the commercial media must clearly show the energy rating of the building.

EPCs are valid for 10 years and can be reused as required within that period. A new EPC is not required each time there is a change of tenancy, or the property is sold, provided it is no more than 10 years old. Where more than one is produced, the most recent EPC is the valid one.

From January 2013, it has been a requirement for all non-dwellings over 500 square metres frequently visited by the public, to display a valid EPC in a prominent place that is clearly visible.

As of January 2013, all sales or lettings advertisements in the commercial media should show the EPC rating of the property being advertised.

Display Energy Certificate (DEC)

The requirement for Display Energy Certificates (DECs) came into effect on 1 October 2008, and affects large public buildings.

They show the energy consumption of a building, the operational rating, and its efficiency compared with other buildings based on gas, electricity and other fuel meter results.

DECs are accompanied by an Advisory Report that lists cost effective measures to improve the energy rating of the building.

A ‘large public building’ is a building which is occupied by a public body, frequently visited by the public, and has a total useful floor area in excess of 250 square metres. This threshold was reduced from 500 square metres, as of 9 July 2015.

RLB’s capabilities in these areas include:

  • Experienced Chartered Surveyors trained to undertake the energy surveys, assessments and audits
  • Accredited energy auditors trained and assessed under the Building Research Establishment (BRE), a government approved scheme
  • Adoption of the Simplified Building Energy Method (iSBEM) interface, developed by the BRE on behalf of the government. This software was developed to calculate EPCs across the UK for commercial properties
  • Adoption of the DEC ORCalc 3.6 BRE software
  • The gathering and auditing of site energy data over a 12-month period

Our role does not end when the assessment is complete. Using the most economic solutions and making use of available grants and funding opportunities, we will advise you on how to improve your building’s Energy Performance Rating. This will increase its value and reduce your running costs.

Please contact Chris Hartley for more information chris.hartley@uk.rlb.com