Whole life costing is fundamental to pre-contract

This essay critically discusses the statement, “Whole life costing is cardinal to pre-contract design option appraisal” , supplying a elaborate numerical worked illustration of whole life bing. Whole life costing is a technique that enables people who are believing of puting money in building undertakings to measure the entire cost of an plus over its whole life, taking in to account the capital costs, the costs of redevelopment, fixs and care and any operational costs over the whole life clip of the investing, and utilizing the entire cost of the plus, to cipher their possible return on investing.

Whole life costing is a cardinal portion of the pre-contract domain in footings of supplying a tool that can be used to measure the assorted, long-run, costs of utilizing different stuffs, for illustration, or of utilizing different designs. Whole life bing provides a step of how much the building undertaking is likely to be over the whole life of the edifice, and appraisals of this cost under different scenarios can be used to find which scenario should be realized, in footings of supplying realistic estimations of the costs of the different undertakings on which to establish determinations about which undertaking should travel in front. Whole life cost provides clients with value for money and most Government clients are now advised to do appraisals of stamps for constructing plants on the footing of whole life bing exactly because it is thewhole lifecost of a edifice that is of import, in footings of budgeting for future disbursals, for illustration.

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Whole life bing replicates the basicss of any economic analysis procedure, in that it should specify the job and the nonsubjective and place executable options for achieving the aim. As Ashworth notes, the intent of cost control is to restrict a client’s disbursement to within certain bounds through using a scope of cost control patterns. Cost control can really add value to a undertaking, nevertheless, by refocusing the design and building pattern, accomplishing a balanced design outgo between the assorted elements of the edifices ( Ashworth, 2004 ) . For Ashworth ( 2004 ) , whole life costing is a more complete version of cost control, accounting for cost control over the whole life of the building undertaking. For Ashworth ( 2004 ) , whole life bing involves looking at such factors as the life of the edifice, impairment and obsolescence, physical impairment, the life of the constituents used, rising prices, and any applicable price reduction rates and revenue enhancement. In pattern, whole life bing should organize portion of a costing program, over the life of the edifice, and should include methods for prediction and covering with possible alterations.

Typical costs of having an office edifice for 30 old ages include the capital costs ( i.e. , the building costs ) , the care costs and the operational costs of the edifice, including staffing. Whilst money can be saved on capital costs, by tweaking the design and altering the stuffs used, the care and operational costs, whilst they can be economised through guaranting quality, for illustration, are changeless costs that need to be borne and therefore necessitate to be considered in any investing determinations: determinations about where and how to put money in building undertakings therefore need to be based on long-run prognosiss ( i.e. , whole life cost estimations ) .

The focal point on whole life bing should hence be on understating the long-run costs of the edifice, by maintaining care costs every bit low as possible and increasing the value of the operational facet of the edifice. The more clip and consideration is invested at the design phase, the larger the amounts of money that will be saved farther on in the procedure, bearing in head, the whole clip, the indispensable inquiry of whole life costing, which is, “What is the cost of accomplishing this aim in this manner? ” under the model of supplying value for money, bearing in head that it is at the design phase where most value additions will be achieved. Quality equates to value for money in the long-term, in footings of the cost of running the edifice over the long-run, for the higher the initial quality, the less likely that dearly-won fixs will be needed.

In footings of really bing in a whole life bing mode, what factors need to be considered? It is of import to believe of capital costs ( i.e. , the costs of the initial physique phase including the stuffs, the land, the design costs, the labor costs etc ) , the operational costs of the edifice across the life of the investing, and the possible care costs of the edifice across the whole life of the investing. Factors such as rising prices and revenue enhancement, and increases in building supplies ( in instance of necessary fixs ) should besides all be factored in to any appraisals of whole life bing in order to give a realistic, non excessively optimistic, estimation of the whole life cost of the investing, in order that realistic estimations of net incomes can be calculated.

Cost direction, or how to measure all of these factors, is the topic of Seeley’s ( 1995 ) book,Constructing Economicss,which inside informations how measure surveyors should near whole life bing in footings of accurately gauging pre-contract costs, capital costs and all other associated costs, in order that accurate whole life bing estimations can be attained and presented to clients so they can make up one’s mind which is the best option for them to do in footings of their return on investing, because whole life cost estimations are more dependable forecasters of value for money than initial building costs.

In footings of a elaborate numerical worked illustration of whole life costing, this is provided in Appendix 1. The illustration discusses the instance of an investor desiring to put money in a edifice undertaking for a sum of 10 old ages. The investor has up to ?2,000,000 to put ab initio, and has three options: a ) constructing a new, sustainable, edifice ; B ) constructing a new, non-sustainable edifice, or degree Celsius ) purchasing and restituting an old edifice. The new, sustainable, edifice is the most expensive option in footings of capital costs, as it costs ?2,000,000 ab initio, compared to ?1,000,000 for option B ) and ?750,000 for option degree Celsius ) , but has far lower running costs over the ten-year investing period: ?3,900,000 in entire, compared to ?5.250,000 for option B ) and, for option degree Celsius ) , ?4,800,000.

In add-on, it is expected that the jobs with fossil fuels going scarce will, within the following decennary, lead to jobs with power supplies, and so a sustainable edifice, utilizing sustainable energy beginnings is expected to sell better at the terminal of this 10 twelvemonth investing period than a non-sustainable edifice, commanding a higher gross revenues monetary value at the terminal of the investing period than the other two options: an estimated ?5,500,000 compared to ?5,250,000 for option B ) and, for option degree Celsius ) , ?3,700,000. The salable value is, as with the care and running costs, an estimation based on prognosiss, as outlined in Seeley ( 1995 ) .

Therefore, although the new, sustainable, edifice is the most expensive option at the beginning of the investing, the entire costs of building, care and operation of the edifice are the lowest over thewhole lifeof the investing for this option when compared to the whole life costs of the other two options i.e. , the new, non-sustainable edifice and the old, renovated, edifice. The investor would be wisest to put their money in the new, sustainable, edifice, as, taking in to account the whole life cost of the assorted options, they would accomplish a better return on investing for that option when compared to the others. For the new, sustainable edifice, their return on investing would be ?1,600,000, whereas for options B ) and c ) this would be a negative figure. The lone executable option under this scenario, for the investor, is therefore the new, sustainable physique, which, as we have seen, has higher capital costs but which, over the whole life of the investing has lower costs, giving the chance for a return on investing to be made.

This essay has critically discussed the statement, “Whole life costing is cardinal to pre-contract design option appraisal” , discoursing the theory of whole life costing and supplying a elaborate numerical worked illustration of whole life bing which clearly shows how of import it is to see the whole life of a undertaking in footings of investing determinations. The value of whole life bing as a technique that enables people who are believing of puting money in building undertakings to measure the entire cost of an plus over its whole life, is that this technique allows all costs to be estimated prior to investing, so that investing determinations can be made based on all available grounds, leting informed picks to be made.


Ashworth, A. ( 2004 ) . Cost Studies of Buildings. 4Thursdayedition. Financial Times/Pearson Education Ltd.

Seeley, I. ( 1995 ) .Constructing Economicss.Palgrave McMillan.



a ) Constructing a new – sustainable – edifice

B ) Constructing a new – non-sustainable -building

degree Celsius ) Converting an old edifice




Renovation costs




Runing costs per annum




Care costs per annum




Depreciation costs per annum




Entire cost of the undertaking per annum




Entire cost over the 10 twelvemonth investing period = WHOLE LIFE COST




Salable value after 10 old ages




Entire return on investing




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