Archive for the ‘Building Plans’ Category

How to add value to your home with basic DIY and when to call in the Professionals!

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018
Spring is the time when people tend to roll up their sleeves and embark on do-it-yourself projects.

For those who are not keen to get their hands dirty (they may not have the ability, expertise or time) hiring the right tradespeople and avoiding cowboys is crucial. Despite the rewards from tackling jobs around the home it is important to know your limits and when it is best to call in the experts. Four out of ten people admit to carrying out DIY disasters that have landed them with bills of as much as £5,000 to put right.

Trusting a professional

Personal recommendation is a great place to start when looking for a tradesperson but it is vital to follow up with references and alternative quotes.  Always remember that the cheapest quote is not necessarily the best and can end up being the most expensive if it fails to disclose extra costs – such as charging for travel, additional materials and VAT.

There are organisations that help homeowners find trustworthy tradespeople such as Checkatrade,  TrustA-Trader, Which? Trusted trader and Rated People.  We take our customer feedback very seriously and are proud our our constantly high reviews here.  Click here to see what our customers say about us Checkatrade

Professional certification

When choosing a builder, consider using a member of the 9,000-strong Federation of Master Builders. An Electrician should be a member of an approved trade organisation, such as the National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting and the National Association of Professional Inspectors and Testers. For Gas installations find a tradesperson who has a Gas Safe register certificate.

Workers not signed up to any of these associations could invalidate home insurance if something goes wrong – such as a house fire.

Stage payments

Builders should have a written contract with you, detailing the stages of the build at which they should be paid and the amounts. Make sure that each stage has been reached before paying, and that the work has been passed, if necessary, by the building and warranty inspectors.

Federation of Master Tradesmen

The Federation of Master Tradesmen logo is recognised by consumers and home owners throughout the United Kingdom. It is respected as a sign of professionalism and a commitment to excellence in the home improvement sector. Members are set strict standards on how to conduct their business. These standards centre around fairness, transparency, honesty and quality of service.  The FOMT is the association of choice for professional tradesmen.

We are here to help with any questions

For more information about Four Corners Properties Ltd please visit our website Click here

If you have a project in mind and you have some initial questions please feel free to leave your details and we will contact you the same day.
Alternatively you can email us directly here  or if you would like a chat please give us a call on either 07788702068 or 01202 269740


When it comes to any project, the design and planning is always the most important part of the job

Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

“Hi everyone, we’re hoping to have single story kitchen/dining room extension built. Finance is in place and plans drawn up and submitted but having no joy with getting a decent quote from a builder It’s not the price I object to it’s the chasing I’ve had to do and the woefully inadequate scrap of paper with a scribbled price that they imagine constitutes a quotation”. Marylou2 Mon 11-May-15  Mumsnet

Sadly, all too often people are let down by the service that they are given by builders – even ones recommended by friends.

Once you have engaged a builder to undertake your building renovations or new development you should expect to receive a quotation on an official headed piece of paper.  A reputable builder should be able to gauge what Structural works will need to be undertaken and the cost of all materials and labour.  A decent builder will be able to provide you with expertly designed plans of what your house currently looks like and how it will evolve into your new dream home once all of the works have been completed.  All plans should be custom made to suit your design specifications and give you a detailed picture of what you can expect. These plans should be designed using the latest technology and should include structural work and completely up to date with all building regulations.

More established builders will have their own team of dedicated expert tradespeople to bring in at various stages (first, second and final fix) to save you the trouble of having to source your own, saving you time and hassle.  This will be broken down in the initial quotation along with expected stage payments and how these payments will be made.

All in all, your quotation and design plans should highlight how your home will be transformed with the best possible use of space and to an agreed budget and timescale.

If you have a property renovation in mind and would like some free advice or a quotation, please leave your details here and we will contact you as soon as possible. Click here to leave your details


Detailed Quotes You Can Trust

Friday, December 11th, 2015

With any building project it is always important to use a company that you can trust and rely on to do a professional job within an allotted time scale and within a budget. It is commonly known that many builders do not fully calculate jobs and end with additional costs for the customer either because the job lasted longer than expected or there are other materials and designs needed that were not planned for.

This is an area Four Corners Properties has become renowned for looking after the customer. We provide a detailed quote of each and every section of the job, so what needs to be done with an explanation to give you an idea of what is being done. Each section is also individually priced so you know how much you are paying and what your money to been spent on. For example waste clearance, plumbing, planning permission, design plans, lights and light fitting. These are but just a few areas in which we would price covering all areas of the work.

With our many years of experience in the trade we find this to be the best way to provide quotes to our customers. It means you the customer, know exactly where your money is going, so we can then plan accordingly from it and you know what work needs to be carried out before your project is complete. This also allows us to work within your budget to make sure your quote is the price you pay! No one likes overspending which is why we go to such detail in the planning section to give you a realistic price based on all parts of the project.

We pride ourselves on our work which is why you can expect us to finish within the time slot we quote with no hidden costs. This is something that separates us from the competition by giving you one of the most comprehensive quotes around. Builders in Bournemouth need to be trusted by their customers which is why our reputation is what makes us who we are. We feel it is important that our customers know exactly what services they are paying and how much each one costs to know that the quote has been custom made to them and they are not getting overcharged.

This is why we are known as the company you can rely on, with many experienced professional tradesmen we get the job done to the highest possible standards. Another positive about our quotes are if you are on a budget and wanted to save money, you can see the areas in which maybe you could reduce costs and customise it to suit the job you require! All our designs are made with customer contact throughout to make sure the designs and prices are to suit you. Don’t settle for the rest use the best!

Below we have a few examples of things we have priced for in the past to give you an idea of the depth of detail and descriptions that we cover within our pricing and quotes. The prices would be to the right of each section but for the example we have not included prices due to that prices will vary from each job due to the size and amount of our expert tradesmen needed to make it possible. For prices and quotes contact us directly and we can help with you with anything you need.

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Detailed Planning and Design

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

When it comes to any project the design and planning is always the most important part. Before you do any of the work you need a detailed structured plan of what is going to happen so you can see what you are going from and working too. Four Corners Properties can provide you with expert design plans of what your house currently looks like and what it will look like after we have worked our magic.

All our plans are custom made to suit your design specifications and give you a detailed picture of what you want to design. These plans are designed using the latest technology to access design plans and structural work to building regulations. We have our own dedicated team of experts who do all our plans which helps to save you money by not using an external company. Take a took at some of the fine work they have complete for a few of our customers below.

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We use only the best tradesmen, that why when it comes to structural plans a good structural engineer could get the most out of your property and any future work you are planning. This is important for all types of work whether it is a domestic extension, loft conversion or a large commercial development. Our experience of working in many different homes tells us that the original design might not be the best and when planning extensions that we can help give your home a bigger and better feel to it. Our expert eye for attention to detail can transform your home into a new place by opening up rooms with extensions and wall removals.

When looking at any home we always look for what the customer wants, but also what would be the most suitable and cost effective design for what you want. This means thinking outside the box of the usual designs to find a design that suits you and your home while maintaining a strong structure to the requirements of the building. By examining a property and using the latest computer technology, we can provide structural design solutions for all projects whether it is a domestic extension, loft conversion or large residential developments and commercial buildings. We have helped many people in and around Dorset and Hampshire to transform their homes in a way that they would never look back.

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The best way to save money with any job is to find a company like ourselves who offer the full service of all aspects of the job. If you were to hire a builder who then gets other companies to do parts of the job they do not cover then you can expect costs to rise. This is due to more people being involved and the builder you hired passing costs over to you from the other companies. This is where we can excel compared to most companies as we will design, build and supply all the materials all by ourselves.

These plans will cover every aspect of the house with fine detail and sizes to help all building calculations meaning when you get prices they will be a lot more exact. This also makes it better to give you a visual demonstration of what the property will look like after the work. We feel it is very important to meet all of the customer needs no matter what it is. Everything from design to customer service, we are always here to help. We have a few pictures of some our plans in this article, have a look through or go to our Planning and Design page or get in touch.

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How to save money on architect designs

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

It is common knowledge that it is not cheap to pay for an architect to draw up plans for any building work you might be looking to get. This is due to the advanced knowledge and training they must go through in order to safely design and draw plans for building work. When you speak to them about any ideas you have they will insist you get them to do it and most of the time we find people will, just so they know the plans are safe. But we at Four Corners Properties do not believe in just letting anyone design our work.

We have our own architects who can draw up plans with you to create something special rather than your usual designs. We feel you should always have the best and most creative design for your money to make the building work you have stand out from the rest. Because we have our own architect to design and draw up the plans it will usually end up cheaper than going straight to an architect yourself. This is part of the five star services we offer for all jobs. We cover every aspect of a build making it cheaper and easier for you.

The best way to save money with any job is to find a company like ourselves who offer the full service of all aspects of the job. If you were to hire a builder who then gets other companies to do parts of the job they do not cover then you can expect costs to rise. This is due to more people being involved and the builder you hired passing costs over to you from the other companies. This is where we can excel compared to most companies as we will design, build and supply all the materials all by ourselves.

It doesn’t matter what kind of build you are thinking of having, we will do it. And if you want to see the wide range of designs we have done then look through our gallery of previous jobs and you will be surprised by the quality of our work. We are known for our creative ideas to make your property stand out and have that unique look. No more will you get ripped off by builders and architects; you will just save money by using Four Corners Properties. So if you have ideas on how to improve your home please contact us now.

Below are 3 designs that we have completed to give you an idea of our work

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All you need to know about Planning Permission

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

What to think about before starting the work

When thinking of doing any kind of building work is it always worth knowing that the owner of the property is responsible for complying with all relevant planning rules and building regulations. Even if you have hired someone to come in and do the work you need to ensure they are working within the rules and regulations regardless of if you need to apply for planning permission or  building regulations approval. This makes it important that you can trust the people who do the work as if they were not to comply with these rules it won’t affect them only the property owner.

Failure to comply with the relevant rules will result with the owner being liable which could mean the work is to be demolished or restored. This makes it important for the property owner to check all relevant paperwork so they know all the rules and regulations are being met. If after this you are still worried about anything then you can always talk to the local planning authority and building control services before the work is carried out to check what you have planned will be fine.

What the difference is between Planning Permission and Building Regulations

Most people think that you need a form of permission for all building work or alterations to a property but this isn’t true. Whether or not you need planning permission depends on the size and amount of work that you are proposing to do in comparison to what is already there but it is always worth checking first with local planning authorities. It is also work checking if you have any responsibilities under the construction health and safety regulations but if you use a contracted company they should be able to clarify this with you.

The use of planning permission is to shape our towns, cities and countryside development in a way that is local councils seek fit. Meaning they don’t want you to change the look of an area with the work that you are planning. This includes the use of land & buildings, the appearance of buildings, landscaping considerations, highway access and the impact that the development will have on the general environment. These are all considerations that will be considered by local planning authorities when you submit an application for work.

Building regulations have been set to ensure the standards for the design and construction of buildings are safe and healthy for the people who are in or near the buildings. This is making sure anyone who works on the building is not at any risk and that all the work carried out is to a required minimum standard and is all structurally sound. They also include requirements to ensure that fuel and power is conserved and facilities are provided for people, including those with disabilities, to access and move around inside buildings.

Depending on what work you are planning to have done to your property though, you will more than likely need to get planning permission and get your building regulations checked by an inspector. If it is just internal altercations then you might only have to get building regulations approval and not planning permission but it is always worth checking just in case. Most building company’s such as Four Corners Properties would be able to clear this up with you to avoid any confusion.

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So how do you go about the planning

One of your first considerations will be planning control. This is the process of managing the development of land and buildings. This process is what is in place to protect what is the best of our heritage while also helping to improve the infrastructure which we need for a civilised existence.This responsibility falls to your local planning authority and they will decide whether a development should go ahead no matter how big or small.

There are a few things to consider before you try to get approval from the building regulations. The responsibility for checking building regulations have been met is up to the building control bodies from the local authorities or a private approved inspector. This would be up to the person who is carrying out the work to get approval for the work. How to get approval depends on whether a Local Authority Building Control service or an Approved Inspector Building Control service is being used and if all their conditions for health and safety have been met. This would normally be checked before and during the work to make sure plans are been followed.

What if any plans are refused

Even if plans are refused it doesn’t mean that is it, you can appeal as long as you think you have a good case to carry out the work. The appeals are carried out by a planning inspectorate and you will need to provide reasons with evidence as to why you think a case should be given the go ahead. You may have to wait to hear back from your appeal as they are sometimes overloaded with cases so expect a delay.

Determinations and appeals are two procedures in which are provided for the secretary of state for communities and local governments. These are what you would use to adjudicate a dispute with carrying out building work subject to the Building Regulations and a building control body (i.e. either a local authority or a private sector approved inspector).

Planning permission is nothing to be feared as most local authorities are happy to let you develop your property as long as it is not going to affect anyone in the area. You always need to be considerate of your neighbors and check you are not going to change the property too excessively unless you have plenty of space. This article should have cleared up your understanding of planning any building work and if you needed any more information we are here to help.

London Again!

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

Welcome to London, where homes earn more than their owners. The capital and the south-east dominate the list of house prices versus earnings over the past two years

Homes have earned more than their homeowners for the past two years in one in five local authorities – almost exclusively in London and the south-east – according to analysis by Halifax.

Here at Four Corners Properties we always advise invest in your property! Any Improvement will give you good returns.


The London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham has seen the biggest explosion in house prices relative to pay, Halifax said. Average prices there have gone up nearly £200,000 over the past two years, while households in the area have had median earnings totalling £56,698 over the same period.

Hammersmith is one of just two areas where houses have earned more than their occupants for the past 10 years. The other is Hackney, another London borough.

The figures reveal a deep north-south divide. Of the 73 local authority areas where homes have earned more than their owners over the past two years, 68 are in London, the south-east or the east. The Cotswolds and the Leicestershire areas of Melton and Harborough were the best “performers” outside of the south.

Islington in London tops the table for house prices versus earnings over five years. Householders in the borough typically earned £135,457 in the five years from 2010-2014. Meanwhile, the average home in Islington soared in price by £258,498.

Every one of the 23 local authority areas where homes outstripped homeowner incomes over the past five years were in London and the south-east.

Outside of the capital, Elmbridge and Mole Valley in Surrey, and South Buckinghamshire are areas where homes have earned more than their owners.

Halifax acknowledged that the huge house price gains have benefitted some, but left others struggling.

“This is good news for some homeowners. At the same time, it is challenging news for many looking to buy their first home in such areas, with prices being pushed out of range for many young people,” said Halifax housing economist Martin Ellis.

This is good news for some homeowners … [but] is challenging news for many looking to buy their first home in such areas
Even in parts of the capital with less salubrious reputations, house prices have earned far more than local wages. Brent, which encompasses Wembley Stadium and has been named as one of the worst areas in London for child poverty, came in the top 10 areas in the UK for house prices outstripping earnings. Over the past five years the median household in the borough earned £108,825, or little more than £21,000 a year, but the average house price in the borough has gone up by £156,731.

But recent data from the major indices tracking house prices show that much of the heat in the 2014 market has now dissipated. Halifax said house prices fell nationally by 0.3% in February, cutting the annualised growth figure to 8.3%. London was the only place in the UK where more surveyors reported price declines than increases in February, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

Separate figures from the Council of Mortgage Lenders show that loans advanced to first-time buyers tumbled again in January, while lending to landlords increased to new highs.

There were 19,000 loans advanced to first-time buyers during the month – down 27% on December’s figure and by 14% compared to January 2014, the CML said. Meanwhile, there were 18,200 buy-to-let loans in January – up 6% on the previous month and up 12% on the same period in 2014.

Source The Guardian Newspaper