The renovation, improvement or new construction of a private residence is renowned to be the most difficult project category for an Architect.
What gives this category such a reputation is the emotional involvement of the client, who is contemporarily owner, stakeholder, project manager, final user.
And often unexperienced about construction.
When the lack of experience meets the keeping of spreadsheets, most homeowners find themselves trapped in a dilemma:
“we spent this much of the budget so far, there is this little left, how can I use the remaining budget in a smart way?
Should we get nice finishes and go over budget OR stick to the budget and settle for lesser quality materials?”
Truth is, finishing materials are there to stay.
It is more convenient to stretch the budget a bit and get good finishes, rather than save now and regret it later, adding other costs in the future.
In most of the cases, extra project expenditures are generated by last minute project variations during the construction and choices of more expensive finishes or furnishings.
These are the result of emotional decisions of the client.
In some unfortunate but not-so-rare cases, old houses just reveal some surprise: rotten joists, sudden leaks, unexpected sewers.
These can cause costly extra work and delays, hardly foreseeable.
For these reasons it is very easy for an un-supervised project to go over budget.