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Practice Profile and Fee Schedules

This page intends to help potential clients who wish to be better informed about the practice and about the way buildings are commissioned before they venture into a project

The history and scope of the practice foundation:

The practice of Kavan Davies Architecture was formed in 1984 after Bryan Davies had served with other public and private firms from 1975. He was born on 6th January 1948 - Kings’ Day.

He trained as an architect at The Architectural Association in Bedford SquareLondon, and joined the Royal Institute of British Architects as an Associate Member in 1973. He joined the District Architects Department at Aylesbury Vale District Council in 1975 and was part of the lead team designing industrial and housing schemes for the Local Authority. He left to form a private partnership in 1981 and then formed his own private practice with Ash Kavan in 1984. Mr. Kavan has now retired from the practice.  Bryan Davies bought the practice in April 1995 and has run it as the sole director since then.

Client list and Awards:

We have acted for public authorities including Aylesbury Vale District Council for housing refurbishments, for Bucks County Council in school adaptations, and for a host of private clients and firms in their search for practical design solutions for offices, factories, houses, housing estates, conversions, alterations and extensions. We are proud of the diversity and range of our portfolio and can put potential clients in touch with any and all of the client list for the purposes of obtaining references for our performance and aptitude to our profession.

Three awards have been received for excellence in design, the most recent in January 1999.

How is a building budgeted for and commissioned ? :

A project can be started through an enquiry with a builder who will then employ an architect to design the building, and obtain the necessary permissions for planning and building regulations, and the like, depending on the complexity of the project. By this method of procurement the client lacks the competitive approach in the building price, and he may not like the designs of the builder’s chosen designer. Problems arise from there.

We will show you our work before you choose us, and we always tender  our project to four or five tested, well known competing builders or contractors. Primarily a contractor works on larger projects, a builder on more minor works - and it is not always the cheapest that gets the work.  It is solely the client’s choice with advice from ourselves and from visiting the contractor’s previous work to see the standard of work and finishes being offered.

Budgets are organised early once feasibilities and project plans are agreed. The major issues of the whole scheme are discussed before submissions are made for planning permission since we want what is permitted to be built as drawn. The details of the scheme are progressed at the same stage once planning is submitted. Budgets are then tested before tenders are sent out, and then again at tender. Cost control is favoured throughout the construction phase of the project.

Professionalism, accountability and complaints:

The practice is registered with the Architects Registration Council of the United Kingdom (ARCUK). It is also bound by the code of conduct and duties of the Royal Institute of British Architects. We encourage clients to expect a first class service: if they do not get it we also expect that they should say so to us directly and forthwith so that we can tackle the problem, find the cause, adjust and give a better performance should this arise.

The practice carries 0.5m professional indemnity for those times when major mistakes are made; none have occurred thus far.  Better safe than sorry.

Liaisons with engineers and other consultants etc:

The practice is not indemnified for specific structural and cost control advice; we expect the client to appoint, with or without our advice, the employment of structural engineers, cost control surveyors, quantity surveyors and other consultants should the need arise for their services, and the fees shown opposite do not include the costs involved in their work. We can usually get specific sanction from our insurers to form a package of consultants for a project should this be required from the outset, with fees agreed as lump sums or on a percentage all-up basis.

Practice statement:

The practice has always specialised in the provision of full project management skills from the inception of a project, however large or small, to the removal of the last spot of paint on completion of the work. Our work includes applying for all statutory consents from planning through to fire certificates, if necessary, and all projects generally include builder tendering, financial and warranty certificates and contract administration.

Clients may pick and choose the service they require at greater or less cost to suit their own needs. Our service allows the in-house planning and completion of projects to leave clients the opportunity of concentrating on their own businesses whilst we manage their design and building expansion with all the exacting tasks that entails.

Projects can be as small as a single front door design installation for a few hundred pounds to the adaptation of nursing home accommodation for the elderly at 750,000.

The service is at a very personable level. The practice is particularly geared to smaller works, generally at around 50,000 - 500,000 excluding VAT.

The work done is normally in the areas of problem design solutions at an intimate scale with the client directly involved. The majority of our work has been to listed properties, house alterations and conversions, new extensions to all types of buildings and we act for the Oxford Diocesan Board for church Quinquennial surveys in the district.

Practice fees, expenses and work stage payments:

The charges made for the work we do varies enormously.  We are sometimes engaged at hourly rates depending on the work we are asked to do.  The rates at present, excluding VAT, are:

Surveying and drafting or copying:

85   per hour

Design and feasibility work:

100  per hour

Designs for historic work:

100 per hour

Planning and appeal witness:

120 per hour

We quote, when given the full scope of the works envisaged and the service required, a flat fee for any whole project, or partial service, but this is necessarily the subject of detailed discussions between all parties concerned at the outset.

Our normal service, the project management or turn-key service, is always provided by the charge of a percentage fee linked to the accepted builders price commissioned by contract. It is much like the percentage that a builder may charge over and above the purchase price of their materials and labour for the work envisaged for the service and overheads for which they need to provide. Fees are generally paid in four instalments through a project; the first at planning, the second at regulations stage, the third at tender and the last on completion of the building work. Each project can be especially geared to cash flow cycles or to specific client requirements.

We are generally in line with the lowest sections of the Architects Institutes Indicative fee scales which is a published document. Copies are available for scrutiny. This publication covers work from 20,000 up to 5 million.

For your own awareness the following is a list of current approximate percentage fees for specific projects for specific clients, and these may  vary from time to time, by agreement and discussion:

Privately commissioned domestic work to existing buildings:


Privately commissioned domestic new buildings work:


Company proposals for alteration work to buildings:


Company proposals for new buildings work:


Speculative green field sites for industrial storage buildings:


In principle the greater and simpler the building contract the lower the percentage fee.

We generally make a charge for printing, mileage travelled, postage, contract documentation etc, and for any photographic work necessary.


All charge levels are agreed before the project is commenced, but revisions and alterations in the scope of the works may vary this agreement.



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This page covers the background and present practice of Kavan Davies Architecture Limited and supersedes all others.

(No:254 on 15:07:2009)