The cost of a Solution to BC(A)R SI.9?

cost_eff

As a follow-on to the Michael Collins and Eoin O’Cofaigh paper yesterday on a solution to BC(A)R SI.9, we look back on an earlier blog post that attempted to quantify the resources and cost of a UK-type system here of “approved inspectors”. Link to previous blog post:  how much for a proper independent building control inspectorate? Quote from post:

“…Let’s look at the costs of a good system of Building Control for a moment. The UK ranks 27th out of 182 countries for “ease of obtaining construction permit” according to the recent by the World Bank Report mentioned recently by Minister Richard Bruton. Their legal and system and building standards are closest to ours so they are a good precedent to look at. How much would it cost us to establish the similar system here?

There are over 3,000 local authority building control inspectors (source: Local Authority Building Control UK) with an additional 600 private licensed Approved Inspectors (source: Construction Industry Council UK). Approved Inspectors complete 20% of all building control inspections in the UK (source: World Bank). So we have a conservative total of 4,000 Building Control inspectors in the UK.

In the UK the current construction industry output for 2012 was €115Bn with Ireland at €7.5Bn (source: Bruce Shaw). Given our construction output is just 6% that of the uk the consequent number of inspectors required should be 270. In 2007 we had less than 70 for the entire country so by employing 200 new inspectors we should have coverage similar to the much praised system in the UK.

…The system would be self-funding, transparent and effective. 100% independent building control inspections throughout the country, real consumer protection. There would be plenty of well-qualified applicants for these roles and a separate simple register could be set up to monitor 200 professional inspectors.

No millions of euros in consultants fees needed to work out the feasibility or costs.”

Even being conservative and over-staffing by double all local authorities to bed-down the new regulation system, we would need 400 new inspectors, a fraction of the resources allocated to Irish Water.

 

0 thoughts on “The cost of a Solution to BC(A)R SI.9?

  1. paulcuddy4444

    Why would we want to duplicate work and add cost? If a consulting engineer or registered architect is overseeing a project, why shouldn’t it be done correctly in the first place. Any obstacles encountered by a private professional will also be encountered by a public professional.
    A lot of the Building Inspectors in the UK are not sufficiently qualified in particular areas, such as to inspect structural calculations so as a consequence, private firms are hired to check each other. This means that the figures for inspection will be quite large and costly.

    Reply
    1. Mark Stephens

      Paul

      The problem is that without adequate independent inspections and enforcement either by the Local Authority or independent inspectors, buildings that are not compliant with the Building Regulations will continue. Only 32.5% of new houses complied with the 2008 version of Part L of the building regulations (Data: Of the 3,595 BER assessments carried out on houses built to the 2008 version of Part L of the building regulations, which deals with insulation and energy, 2,426 — or 67.5% — fail at least one of the main standards). This would not have occurred if the DEAP calculations were checked at Commencement stage and during the construction. It’s too late when the BER certificate is issued on completion and you’re relying on prosecution/enforcement. The construction industry has shown that it cannot self-regulate itself. This is just Part L, without taking into account all the other Parts from A-M.

      This post details the (in my opinion) very reasonable costs to undertake the inspections required as described above.

      Mark

      Reply
  2. paulcuddy4444

    The regs. insist on appropriately qualified professionals now. These people have the academic and professional experience to carry out their work effectively. They should not need supervision or inspection. They can operate at a high level of ethics and integrity. Lets not judge them before they have had a chance to prove their capability. Pre-2014 the industry was awash with cowboys, they are now gone and lets be fair some good practitioners are gone too. But you can be rest assured the ones left are regulated and professional. Lets see how the industry performs over the next year or two.

    Reply
  3. paulcuddy4444

    The regs. insist on appropriately qualified professionals now. These people have the academic and professional experience to carry out their work effectively. They should not need supervision or inspection. They can operate at a high level of ethics and integrity. Lets not judge them before they have had a chance to prove their capability. Pre-2014 the industry was awash with cowboys, they are now gone and lets be fair some good practitioners are gone too. But you can be rest assured the ones left are regulated and professional. Lets see how the industry performs over the next year or two.

    Reply
    1. Mark Stephens

      That is a good point but what happens when the Assigned Certifier is employed directly by the developer (which is still now possible); we’ll still have the likes of Priory Hall unless indpendent inspections are implemented.

      Reply
  4. Pingback: How do we fix BC(A)R SI.9? | BRegs Blog

  5. Pingback: How do we fix BC(A)R SI.9? | BRegs Blog

  6. Pingback: Taoiseach: get building back to ‘sensible, sustainable levels’ | BRegs Blog

  7. Pingback: Taoiseach: get building back to ‘sensible, sustainable levels’ | BRegs Blog

  8. Pingback: CSO: (Q1 2014) planning permissions for dwellings -30% drop | BRegs Blog

  9. Pingback: CSO: (Q1 2014) planning permissions for dwellings -30% drop | BRegs Blog

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *