Building a New Build House in the UK: A Guide.


Constructing a house is an investment that involves stages and complexities. One crucial aspect to consider when building a house is the time required to complete the project. In the UK the construction timeline depends on factors such, as the size, intricacy, location, and chosen construction method. This blog delves into the thought process behind estimating house-building timelines in the UK providing an overview of the duration for each step involved in the procedure.

How long does it usually take?

On average building a house in the UK typically takes around 7 12 months. However, it's important to note that factors like location, size of the house complexity of design, and construction method can impact this timeline. Rural locations might require more time due to resource accessibility while urban areas often benefit from better infrastructure. Custom-designed homes involve planning and design work; thus they usually span between 9 to 12 months in areas or 4 to 6 months, in urban settings. Nonetheless, unexpected circumstances and resource availability can also influence project timelines.

What are the steps involved? Detailed breakdown

Site Preparation - The process of building a house begins with site preparation once you have acquired your plot and completed all planning and preparations.

Clearing Ground - First, the site needs to be cleared of waste and vegetation and tradespeoples facilities and services should be set up. Groundworkers are responsible, for creating access to the site. They clear the area of soil which is then stacked for use. A site hut is equipped with drawings and safety equipment installed. Additionally, a toilet and a secure lock up or lorry container are installed.

Plumbing - The water board brings the water supply to the boundary connecting it to a stopcock. A plumber then connects the water standpipe. Once these initial preparations are completed a surveyor marks out the building location on the cleared site adjusting lines and profiles as needed away from construction.

Mixer-Station -To facilitate construction work there is a designated mixer station near piles of bricks, blocks, cement, and sand. The process of preparing the house site typically takes 4 to 6 weeks and can vary based on factors such as plot size, location, and complexity. This step is crucial in establishing a foundation since rushing through it may result in mistakes or delays in later stages.

Foundations - The next step involves laying foundations which plays a vital role in home construction. This process begins with excavation work followed by reinforcing bars or mesh installation within the foundation structure. Ducts are also incorporated into the foundation for service entries

Concrete Footings - Once prepared sufficiently concrete footings are leveled before building up foundation blockwork until reaching the damp-proof course level. Air vents that have been cranked for seating along with drainage exit lintels and proof courses are subsequently added.

Finally, any voids, within this foundation structure are filled with lean mix concrete to ensure stability.
The initial phase of construction, in the UK, typically lasts 4 to 6 weeks and heavily relies on establishing a strong foundation.

Structural Construction Phase - Moving on to the structural construction stage in the process. It is important to have the building inspector sign off once the structural work is completed. The groundworkers will dig service trenches and install utility lines, such as stopcock/meter lines and ducts. Each section will have floor beams, drainage, and vent pipes as blocks. Ventilator grilles, coursing blocks, and grout will be carefully installed. Before proceeding with the structure there will be a building control/warranty assessment arranged. Templates for windows and doors will be put into place. The first set of scaffolding is required for work to progress smoothly.

Brickwork - Bricklayers will focus on chimneys, lintels, and brickwork for the structure part. They'll also take care of installing fireplace lintels and establishing flue liners as they proceed with their work. Plumbers will reroute the water supply to its designated stopcock position. Electricians from service providers will come in to install meters and connect them accordingly.

Carpentry - Continuing with construction tasks bricklayers will concentrate on building ends and chimneys while carpenters work on constructing end trusses using templates provided. Plumbers are responsible for lead flashing trays, and skirts around the chimney area along with installing vent pipes and flashing skirts that pass through the roof.

As we approach the completion of this step in construction, bricklayers carry out touches by topping out the chimney pot followed by pointing towards chimney flashings.

On average, in the UK context, this particular stage can take around 16 weeks to complete.

The timeframe, for completing the project will vary depending on its size and complexity. To secure the scaffolding we use patented wall plate straps while scarfing, bedding, and tying it down up to the lift. In the UK constructing the superstructure typically takes around three to four months.

Roofing - Moving on to adding the roof is a step in building a home as it brings everything together. Our carpenters carefully secure roof trusses onto the wallplate. They ensure all binders and bracing are properly fixed at node points. Additionally, they construct dormers and install fascia and soffit elements. Any necessary ventilation grilles or strips are also added by our team. Our skilled roofers handle tasks such as cutting and laying underclocking to verges along with laying tiles, slates, ridge/hip tiles, valley tiles, fiberglass, or lead valleys. The plumber takes care of dressing down flashings and skirtings while our decorators paint or stain the fascias, soffits, and barges as needed. This phase typically takes around four to six weeks on average in the UK. Can vary based on roof size and complexity.

First Fix - Moving into the next step of building a home involves completing internal and external tasks known as the first fix stage and fittings process. This includes fixing guttering systems in place along, with joinery components. External rendering work is also carried out during this stage before taking down the scaffolding structure. Plumbers then proceed with downpipes where necessary.
They connect them to drainage upstands or gullies. Carpenters who work on the stages install door frames, partitions, and window sills. This phase usually takes around 6 to 8 weeks on average in the UK. During this time the first fix stage involves installing plumbing systems. Plumbers are responsible, for laying down flooring membranes, insulation, underfloor heating loops, and plumbing for / water and waste disposal. They also install gas pipes and underfloor heating pipes connected to manifolds and outlets. Across the UK this stage typically takes 4 to 6 weeks.

Drainage Systems - The next step in home construction is work which includes drainage systems, driveways, and pathways. Groundworkers dig trenches for drainage ditches. Lay drains with slopes. Once approved by the building inspector the drains are covered with pea shingle for support. The trenches are then filled back up. Carpenters boxings and noggings to prepare for plastering while bricklayers construct fireplaces and hearths.

Gas Installations - In addition, to that the gas meter is connected while plumbers collaborate with electricians regarding crossbonding and earthing requirements. This entire process generally takes around 6 8 weeks to complete.

Staircase -Moving on to work which involves installing the staircase—a significant part of completing the interior of a house—the carpenter will carefully fit in place the main staircase while ensuring its protection. Plasterers will secure ceilings in place.

Plastering - For the construction process all the walls, including blockwork walls, will be covered with plasterboard. The study walls and pipe boxings will also have plasterboard attached. We will ensure that all joints and angles are filled and secured with tape, where different materials meet we will use mesh to join them. To prevent any leakage or gaps all joinery work will be sealed both internally and externally using mastic. Skilled plasterers will then apply a skim coat to give a finish to all the walls and ceilings. The decorator's job is to paint or treat the backs of skirting boards and architraves. Additionally during this stage roofing insulation will be installed well. The duration of this step can vary depending on factors. Typically takes around 8 to 12 weeks to complete in the UK.

Second Fix - Moving on to the step of building a home, which involves interior tasks such, as second fix carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work. Skirting boards, architraves (door frames) treads of the staircase balustrading (railing) handrails, timber floors, and ceramic tiles are installed at this stage. Carpenters or specialized suppliers may also be build custom made furniture for bedrooms and bathrooms as per design plans. Kitchen units are put in place during this phase too.

The second fix stage primarily focuses on connecting everything by wiring up components like boilers along with plumbing connections such as sink units and sanitaryware installations. It also includes connecting heating loops to manifold radiators as well as towel rails for heating purposes while ensuring proper cross-bonding and earthing for safety.

Please note that these timelines may vary based on circumstances but generally follow this sequence, in home construction projects in the UK. This particular step usually requires around 4 to 8 weeks in the UK.

Decoration - When it comes to home decor there are tasks that need attention once the construction is completed. These tasks include working on the worktops cleaning and painting. In addition, the kitchen and utility areas have wall tiles while the internal timber is sanded and painted. After filling any gaps tilers come in to install wall and backsplash tiles. Another task, during this step is installing a water meter. The duration of this step depends on the size of the house. It typically takes 2-4 weeks.

Landscaping - Another aspect of beautifying a property involves landscaping work. This includes leveling the ground adding topsoil constructing driveways installing patio slabs creating dwarf or decorative walls and preparing lawn sections for sowing grass seeds or laying turf. The length of time required for this step depends on the scope of the landscaping project. This can range from weeks to a few months in the UK.