CAPE TOWN – In the third and final part of our ‘Fix Forward Takes on Large Projects’ series, we caught up with client Bjorn Rudner to chat about how his project is progressing, and his experience using Fix Forward’s Project Management services. If you’re not familiar with the blog series, please do check out Part 1 and Part 2 to get up to speed!
Fix Forward (FF) We last chatted to you a while ago when you renovated your bathroom using Fix Forward as a sort of ‘trial run’. What made you decide to stay with FF for the rest of the project?
The bathroom renovations went well. Fanie’s crew were friendly and courteous and the project was completed on budget and on time. As I was already pretty keen on going with Fanie for the full renovation project, all my expectations were met in the ‘pilot’ and thus it made sense to move forward with Fanie and the backing of Fix Forward.
After further contractual discussions we commenced the main project in early May with Fanie Manjete as our main contractor under the mentorship of Armien of Fix Forward.
Read More about Fanie Manjete in ‘Fanie Manjete’s Rondebosch Revival‘
FF: Could you describe the work being carried out, or the cope of the project?
The project is fairly extensive in that there is a substantial amount of excavation, with underpinning of the main house required. Our residence is on the slopes of Devils Peak and over 80 cubic meters of earth and rock needed excavating and removal in order to build a double garage and cellar alongside the existing house, with a concrete slab laid above this.
Above the cellar a flatlet is to be constructed with en-suite bathroom, while the flat entrance will lead onto the deck created by the double garage roof. Some changes are also being created to the existing façade of the house, while an existing upstairs deck is to be renovated, waterproofed and retiled. All in all, it’s quite a major project!
FF: What, if any, obstacles have you overcome? What role did Fanie or FF play in overcoming them?
A big part of the challenge for Fanie is the confined space of the front area to be used as the construction base where not only the excavated rubble would need to be stored before removal, but also a small area for tools, materials and for mixing concrete. This has been overcome through regular removals of the rubble as well as good planning and neat workmanship.
Another concern was that of security as the demolition of existing carport and walls would expose us to security risk, but Fanie’s crew did a good job in constructing temporary security walls behind the construction as well as barrier fences on the perimeter.
FF: Would you still be likely to recommend Fix Forward to family and friends?
I would! Currently, I am happy with the back-up which Fix Forward provides to the project and am confident that this will prove of value right until the final sign-off.
FF: What, if any, changes would you make to the Fix Forward project management service?
I was under the impression that no charges would be forthcoming through the involvement of Fix Forward as a result of Fix Forward being an NGO. But after certain quotes had been submitted, there were additions as the mark-up of Fix Forward had not been included – thus the quote was escalated. I feel that this should be more transparent up-front.
FF: Anything further you’d like to add or note?
Fanie is a wonderful person with great humility and a tremendous attitude towards his clients. His crew are all hand-picked by him and they carry the same attitude. There have been great challenges with rain and weather during the excavation and underpinning process, but they have all performed extremely well through this time.