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Home extension - signing it off for completion 

Any good builder will want you to sign off the works for practical completion as soon as possible so that you can start enjoying the home and he can move on to their next job. This is often referred to as 'practical completion'. It may not be the fully finished article but it is a legal term for when you are able to start using the new spaces.  There may still be the odd bit of clearing up, making good or final fix of a light fitting for example but it is a good place to be for both the home owner and extension builder alike.

If you have employed your home extension designer or architect to provide contract administration services then they will issue the required certificate as part of their own administration systems.  This date is then  recorded for the release of any retention monies that may be due after an agreed defects liability period.

If the homeowner is dealing with the builder and any administration processes direct, then this could be as simple as responding to a builders letter or singing a builders instruction note.

This practical completion date should also trigger the finalising of other sign off processes with the Building Regulations being the main player.  Always make sure that your builder arranges for any snagging with the Building Inspector Direct so that any remaining outstanding works can be finalised to enable the Building Inspector to issue a Completion Certificate.

You must then retain this completion certificate within your house file as it may be needed in years to come when you sell the property.  You should also start to be collecting any appliance instructions and completing your own snagging list for the builder to finalise on.

Remember that the Building Inspector is not interested in the level or standard of finishings for example so their checking procedures are different to your own.  They are after the compliance of thermal, structural, waterproofing and drainage mainly.



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