After what would have been months, if not years, of hard work, the time has finally come for the building to be handed over!

Any of the remaining defects listed on the defects report should be rectified by the construction team as soon as possible. You want to start living in the property that has taken so much of your energy up to this point.

Aftercare is initiated at the Handover once the Building Contract is deemed to be concluded.  This typically involves two main things: the Plan for Use Strategy and feedback in the form of a Review of the Project Performance.

Plan for Use Strategy

Once your self-build property is constructed or your residential property is ready for letting, the Plan for Use comes into play.  It’s like the final act of a well-scripted play.  This stage is all about ensuring that your property functions as intended and meets the needs of its users.

Here’s a breakdown of the Plan for Use:

  1. Post-Occupancy Evaluation (POE): This is like taking a step back and observing how your property performs in the real world.  Architects and builders often conduct surveys and gather feedback from occupants to assess if everything is working as planned.  It’s like fine-tuning the performance of your property.
  2. Feedback and Improvements: Based on the feedback received during the POE phase, necessary improvements or adjustments are made.  It could be anything from fixing minor issues to enhancing energy efficiency.
  3. Building Manual and User Guides: Explained further in last week’s post, think of this as the user manual for your property.  It provides detailed information on how to operate and maintain different systems within the building.
  4. Maintenance Planning: Keeping your property in top-notch condition is crucial.  During this stage, plans for ongoing maintenance and repairs are established.  It’s like having a roadmap for keeping your property in tip-top shape.
  5. Adapting to Changing Needs: Over time, your needs or those of other occupants might evolve.  The Plan for Use strategy encourages flexibility, so you can make changes or additions to your property to accommodate these changing needs.

In essence, the Plan for Use Strategy ensures that your self-build property remains a comfortable and functional space for its users in the long term.

Review Project Performance

Within the post on Stage 0, we discussed Lessons Learned from Feedback.  The output of this control loop comes at this Handover Stage where all the knowledge derived from this project can be reused to inform the dialogue within Stage 0 of the next project.  This creates a culture of continuous learning and improvement within the construction industry, driving forwards improvements with processes.

Final Certificate

The RIBA Plan of Work 2020 explains that approximately 12 months after the practical completion – the point in which construction work is certified practically complete under the Building Contract – the Final Certificate can be issued.  This will conclude many of the professional services whose contracts are typically aligned with the Building Contract.

There is a consideration that new contracts may form to allow for the aftercare tasks to continue throughout the lifespan of the building where Facilities Management and Asset Management will continue to be supported.  This could be where new technologies may be monitored for real life performance against theoretical calculations during the design phase.

That concludes the RIBA Plan of Work 2020 mini post breakdown.  I’m away next week with family but when I return, I will be sharing my thoughts on the benefits of using the framework.

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