Tel : 028 9016 0472   E-Mail :

Belfast Building & Roofing

Project Advice

Below I have gathered some Project Advice in lay-mans terms

Project Advice

S.M.A.R.T Objectives

When you know what project you want and why you want it we recommend a basic project management tool known as “SMART objectives” which can help deepen your understanding of your project.

Smart stands for…

  • Specific – Don’t generalize about your project be specific who, what, where, when, which, why.
  • Measurable – How is your project measured, how big/many, how will I know when it is progressing or finished.
  • Attainable – Identify the aspects important to you then think how to make them attainable.
  • Relevant – Your Project should be important and relevant to all stakeholders.
  • Time bound – You should have a degree of urgency and a time frame.    

Home Extensions Basic Specifications

  • Home Extensions Conversions etc are not Painted/Decorated as Standard.
  • Standard Electrics = 1 Light, 1 Switch,1 Double Socket/Room
  • Standard Plumbing = One Radiator/Room.
  • Plumbing Systems are not Upgraded as Standard.
  • Electrical Systems are not Upgraded as Standard.
  • External ground works include making good only to new Extension

EstimateOur Mission Statement To find new solutions and achieve new goals, create, enhance and preserve enduring relationships with progressive thinking partners while employing our

full potential and abilities and maintaining safe environmentally friendly working practices.

Our Core Beliefs  We intend to uphold common law, respect and engage constructively with all project stakeholders providing adequate information and dealing with any

issues within a fair and ethical method. To promote a safe and healthy site operating safe methods of working.

The 12 steps are: Define -> List the tasks -> Estimate -> Critical Path -> Accelerate -> GANTT CHART -> Resources -> Risk -> (START) -> Monitor Progress -> Money -> Reschedule ->

Review Terms & Conditions


Typical Critical Path Diagram Design & Budget Try to repeatedly identify, define and prioritize the objectives of your project. re-listing and redefining your objectives will deepen your understanding of the project and promote effective dialogue with your builder. Good communication is key, so know and be clear what you want and don’t want and why before you move into the design stage remembering that:  Once you know what you want and why you want it, you can choose the size shape and roof type etc. enabling a ball park estimate to be given by most good builders. Once plans are drawn choose a builder with experience and references and make a contract based upon the approved plan. Agree the starting date and stage payments early on, after footings, after wall plate, after roof and after completion etc.  Be very clear on what is included and what is not, especially with tiling, floor covering, finishing, decoration, making good gardens and driveways etc.

The success of the project will be judged by its functionality in context with your original objectives and your actual needs.

My 3 Fundamental Design Rules are;

  1. Plenty of natural light.
  2. Plenty of thermal and acoustic insulation.
  3. Try to keep within budget

The information below should help you avoid some of possible headaches and hopefully give you a more rounded view of what you are getting yourself into when managing a Project on your home.  If it’s your first time I sincerely hope this simple advice may help avoid some unnecessary stress. Project-Management-Task-BoardOne of the most obvious banana skins is taking the lowest priced builder who has under priced the job.  Although both kinds should be avoided at all costs these Builders are generally divided into two main camps.

  1. Those who are genuinely inexperienced                                             
  2. Those who want their foot in the door and access to your money at all costs and who will keep
  • Asking.
  • Promising. 
  • Apologizing.

These types of builders generally disappear without finishing the Job at a time that suits them. 


Firstly – try to take a step back and try to look a little more formally and  more objectively at your project, Try to think you are building the project for someone else and try to set out a strict management culture at an early stage while constantly highlighting and remembering your reasons for having it built.

NI Planning Service Advice   Building Control Guidance notes 



The Benefits of Natural Light

& its positive effect on building performance and human health.

Many say Architects have given us buildings and developments divorced from their context, like some alien realm disconnected from ecology … and place.” In cities today, daylight is one of the last ways we can reconnect with our inner most wild extinct s. Formally in the practice of architecture, day-lighting refers to the use of natural light,(brilliant or overcast) in supporting the visual demands of a buildings occupants using natural light as the primary source of daytime illumination to create a visually and thermally comfortable place connected to outdoor phenomena.

Day-lighting, Efficiency, and Productivity

Scientists have reported that day lit environments increase occupant productivity and comfort, and provide the mental and visual stimulation necessary to regulate human circadian rhythms, however daylight can also be too much of a good thing, A building that has aggressive day-lighting goals but is poorly operated will likely use more energy and might subject its occupants to excessive glare and thermal stress. But even then people consistently report how they hope they never have to transfer elsewhere.”

Happier workers, substantial financial and human-performance benefits have been associated with increased daylight and it is clear that an “ample and pleasant view out of a window, that includes vegetation or human activity and objects in the far distance, support better outcomes of student learning too. Recent research has underscored the effect of daylight on human health and biological functions. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, humans in modern cities spend upwards of 90 percent of their lives indoors. If they are occupying statically, perhaps stagnantly, lit environments, they can become disassociated with the natural outdoor cycles and variation of lumination levels.

Daylight and the Circadian Cycle

The biological processes that regulate our sleep–wake cycle make up our circadian system. Primarily through the use of the hormone melatonin, our circadian system regulates our patterns of alertness and sleepiness. Without exposure to normal 24-hour light–dark cycles, a person’s sleep–wake cycle can stray by as much as two hours per day.

Integrating Daylight with Design

While daylight is a variable, often unpredictable, light source with a spectrum that depends on solar position and sky conditions, it is also rich in the short-wavelength portion of the visible spectrum found to support both alertness and circadian sleep–wake entrainment. As a result, daylight in buildings may support human health and well-being, particularly for people in northern latitudes who occupy areas near a window or other daylight sources. But regardless of latitude or exposure duration, daylight may support human alertness and productivity. At the same time, it is important to remember that it is the daily—and possibly the seasonal—variation associated with the day–night light and dark cycles that supports human health. Lighting manufacturers, for one, have jumped on the bandwagon and attempted to mimic these cycles through electric light sources and lighting systems.

Three tasks that are critical to a successful day-lighting installation are:

  • The control of direct sunlight at visual task areas during all occupied hours;
  • The provision of balanced luminescence on interior surfaces, particularly between perimeter windows and key vertical surfaces within the interior volume;

Once a design is executed, ensure operational success by educating building occupants and operators on the intent of the day-lighting design, how to use lighting controls, and how to access and use shading controls. It is the “seasonal variability of interior daylight illumination,” Heschong says, “along with views to the outdoors that provides important stimulus to the circadian system, [and] along with making any space more pleasurable and interesting for its occupants.”