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  • Structural Engineer Costs

    If you are wondering how much does a structural engineer cost, this article will help you understand everything you need to know including the average structural engineer costs. It also helps you understand what structural engineering is, the duration of certain jobs and the legal complexities of structural engineer jobs.

    structuralengineer

    The Average Cost Of A Structural Engineer Per Day:

    £450

    How Much Do Structural Engineers Cost?

    The cost of hiring a structural engineer will vary depending on the job itself, for instance, building an extension ranges from £400 to £2000, while structural engineers usually charge around £600 to £1800 for a loft conversion. The average cost of building a house is around £200 to £2000, and internal wall removal is priced at £300 to £500.

    Other jobs include chimney breast removal which is normally priced at £100 to £500, £300 to £500 to assess your roof for solar panels and £150 to £500 to fit doors and windows.

    Structural Engineer Prices

    The below table breaks down the cost of various structural engineer jobs:

    Job Description Average Cost
    Building an extension £400 - £2000
    Removing chimney breast £100 - £500
    Loft conversions £600 - £1800
    Fitting solar panels £300 - £500
    Modifying doors and windows £150 - £500
    Building a house £200 - £2000
    Removing internal walls £300 - £500

    Timescales

    Structural engineers tend to charge an hourly or daily fee, so the longer the job is, the more you will pay. The duration will also depend on the difficulty of the job as well as accessibility and restrictions. The below table sets out the timescale for various structural engineering jobs:

    Job Description Average Timescale
    Building an extension 3 hours – 1 day
    Removing chimney breast 2 hours – 1 day
    Loft conversions 2 hours – 1 day
    Fitting solar panels 1 - 2 hours
    Modifying doors and windows 3 hours – 1 day
    Building a house 7 – 10 days
    Removing internal walls 3 – 5 hours

    Additional Costs

    There are various other costs you need to consider when hiring a structural engineer, including:

    Additional structural work

    If building regulations are not met during a renovation, then you incur additional construction costs to ensure the changes meet building regulations. This could range from £300 for minor jobs or up to £2000 for new property construction.

    If you fail to make the changes or restore the property to its original state, then you could end up paying a fine of £5000 or more.

    Installing an RSJ

    If removing any load-bearing walls, you may have hired a structural engineer to map out where the rolled-steel joist should be placed. The cost of installation normally ranges from £600 to £1300.

    structuralengineer1

    Underpinning a house

    One of the most important duties of a structural engineer is checking whether the ground is level enough to ensure they are able to support any new changes. If the report they produce shows evidence of inadequate foundations, you may have to pay to underpin your house.

    The cost of this can range from £4800 to underpin a single wall in a terrace home with resin injector and up to £36,400 to underpin a detached house with a mini-piling method.

    Foundations

    If there any additional issues with your foundations that are conducted in a structural engineer report, then you may need to install new foundations to provide stability. The cost of new foundations ranges from £4000 to £12,000 depending on the type of foundations you need, although this may be lower if you decide to DIY.

    What is a Structural Engineer?

    A structural engineer is a type of qualified civil engineer who specialises in designing and planning property structures to ensure they are stable and meet building regulations.

    Structural engineers are trained in multiple areas, and the main part of their job is to inspect buildings and prepare reports, as well as producing structural calculations for house designs.

    They can also obtain building regulations and planning permission approval which will offer you complete reassurance that any changes are compliant.

    They are hired on multiple jobs, including:

    • Extensions and conversions
    • Solar panel installation
    • Door and window modification
    • Internal wall removal
    • Chimney breast removal

    Cost Factors of a Structural Engineer

    To determine the cost of structural engineer jobs, you need to consider several factors in your budget before hiring someone, as the following points will determine their final quote.

    Type of job

    Structural engineers usually charge an hourly or daily rate; however, their final price will depend on the type of job they are involved. For instance, smaller jobs such as modifying doors and windows costs around £150 to £500, while consulting on solar panel installation ranges from £300 to £500.

    Larger projects such as building a new property could cost anywhere from £200 to £2000, £400 to £2000 for an extension and £600 to £1800 for loft conversions. Other common jobs include chimney breast removal, which costs around £100 to £500, while internal wall removal is normally priced at £300 to £500.

    structuralengineer2

    Location of property

    Where you live is also a contributing cost factor, as both small and large structural engineering companies may charge more for properties in central areas where there is a lot of traffic.

    They may also set higher rates for residents in remote areas which are further away, so you may want to try and find a local structural engineer that is cheap.

    If you live in London, you could expect to pay around £100 per hour or more for structural engineering services, while companies in the north-west may only charge £50 an hour.

    Ease of access

    Structural engineers may put their prices up if there is restricted access to a property, for instance, if conducting a roof survey on a steep roof, they may charge extra, as it will take longer to inspect.

    What's Involved in Structural Engineering?

    To help you understand the structural engineering process, here is a breakdown of the process for different jobs.

    Building an extension

    Before having an extension built, a structural engineer will assess the structure of the property, which will help them draw up their design plans. They will then draw up plans and layout the structural calculations for the roof, the first floor, and walls to ensure the extension will be structurally sound and meets building regulations.

    Removing chimney breast

    If removing a real chimney breast, you will need to consult a structural engineer who will assess the chimney breast and roof to ensure it is safe to remove. This could also involve drawing up plans to install support beams to secure the structure of the property.

    Loft conversions

    Loft conversions that involve altering roof trusses will require the help of a structural engineer who will conduct a survey on the roof to ensure it is safe enough to support a loft conversion. They will also conduct structural calculations for roof beams to make sure they are positioned correctly, while also making sure the conversion is safe.

    Fitting solar panels

    If you are considering installing solar panels, then you may need to hire a structural engineer to conduct a roof survey to check the safety and security of the roof. This will enable them to decide whether your roof is strong enough to support solar panels. They will also assess the size and capability of the mounting systems that the solar panels will sit on.

    structuralengineer3

    Modifying doors and windows

    When renovating your home, you may decide to change a window to a door or vice versa. If making multiple door and window alterations, then structural engineering may be important to ensure that new installations align with regulations.

    This is especially important if a wall is a load-bearing, as a structural engineer will survey the doorway or window opening and offer their advice and plans for modifications.

    Building a house

    For new properties, structural engineers will design and plan the skeleton of the home, which will include everything from load-bearing walls to the roof and foundations. They will create a mathematic plan to ensure that building regulations are met, and the property measurements are realistic.

    Removing internal walls

    If expanding space in your home by removing internal walls, then a structural engineer’s services will come in handy, especially if the wall is load-bearing. They will offer their expert advice on the type and size of rolled steel-joist you need to fix onto the beams to support the load-bearing wall during removal.

    Cost of Building Regulations and Planning Permission

    When building or changing the structure of a property, you need to consider building regulations and planning permission to ensure any structural changes are safe and complaint.

    To ensure you meet building regulations and planning permission, you may want to consider hiring a structural who will ensure that any plans and designs are all in line with permissions or if not they will help you calculate the costs of applying for changes.

    structuralengineer4

    While it is not a legal requirement to hire a structural engineer, it is worthwhile as it will prevent any problems during and after the building process. The role of a structural engineer is to inspect the area where you want to make changes and will produce a report that will point out any issues.

    Once the inspection is complete, they will then proceed to map out measurement and design ideas which meet the current regulations to ensure your property is safe and secure.

    If you do not hire a structural engineer to conduct an inspection report, then this could result in expensive repairs later down the line, as you may end up building an extension, removing a wall, or having to pay to replace doors or windows if they are unsafe.

    Hiring a Structural Engineer Checklist

    Before hiring a structural engineer, you should ask several questions to ensure that you are hiring a reliable and hard-working tradesman. To help you understand what to look for, take a look at the following checklist.

    • Inquire about their qualifications which should include a degree in structural or civil engineering
    • Ask about their experience and only hire them if they have previous involvement with a similar job
    • Request proof of previous experience in the form of review or images if possible
    • Check to see if they are registered under the competent person’s scheme or any other accredited structural engineering organisation

    FAQs

    What are structural engineer calculations?
    A structural calculations report is basically an outline of the project design and building work which includes everything from foundations and structural works to materials and measurements for beams and joists.

    The report is a vital part of renovations as it ensures that building regulations and planning permission approval is met. It also prevents disputes during the building process as long as the calculations are followed.
    When is a structural engineer required?
    You should consider hiring a structural engineer if you plan on renovating your home or building a new property, as they will be able to inspect and report on the condition of the property and calculate the best way to make changes while complying to building regulations.

    You may also want to consult with a structural engineer if you any structural issues such as subsidence, sagging ceilings or roofing problems, as they will provide you with the best complaint solution.
    Can a structural engineer draw up plans?
    If you are just hiring a structural engineer without the help of an architect, then they can provide you with structural calculations as well as drawing up the building plans.
    How much are structural engineer reports?
    The average structural engineer survey cost is around £300 to £400. However, this will vary depending on the inspection job, the location and ease of access.
    Can a structural engineer design a house?
    Structural engineers do contribute to the design of a property to a certain extent. However, if you are looking for a design expert, you may want to consider hiring an architect or an interior designer instead.

    Sources

    https://hoa.org.uk/advice/guides-for-homeowners/i-am-improving/need-structural-engineer/
    https://www.harveynormanarchitects.co.uk/articles/loft-conversion-guide-in-depth-information-on-how-to-successfully-tackle-a-loft-conversion
    https://www.colinmillard.com/costs.php
    https://mperryassociates.com/blog/why-you-need-a-structural-engineer-when-installing-solar-panels/
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-14125196
    https://acarchitects.biz/self-build-blog-structural-engineer/
    https://www.planningportal.co.uk/info/200130/common_projects/17/extensions
    https://www.apexloftandroofconversions.co.uk/FAQs.aspx
    https://www.jefferyandwilkes.co.uk/what-are-structural-calculations/

    Last updated by MyJobQuote on 19th August 2020.

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