One of the overriding purposes of a Quantity Surveyor is ensure that the client gets Value for Money. This could be saving money or making sure that none is unnecessarily spent.
Before the Project Starts
This is achieved by using their knowledge and experience to ensure that the client does not overpay for their construction project. There are various ways of doing this, it may include writing a schedule of works (a list of tasks required to build the project with quantities for pricing), negotiating a cost plan with a contractor or using a pro-active approach to assess a Design and Build proposition.
During the Project
Quantity Surveyors carry out a variety of tasks through the build stage of a project, the most important of which are:
Valuations (assessments of what payment the builder is due); Cost Reports (an assessment of what the project will cost at completion at monthly intervals) and the Final Account Negotiations (negotiating costs for variations to the original project to come to a final agreed figure).
When the Quantity Surveyor has been included from the outset, all negotiations are based on the competitive rates used at the Tender Stage which ensures that the “suck air through the teeth” method of costing variations is avoided entirely. There should be no nasty surprises! It is this part of the process in which the Quantity Surveyor really earns their money.