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10 Oct 2019

How do guarantees help to achieve a lower cost of building ownership?

A building envelope system solution backed by a manufacturer’s guarantee helps to ensure that a project is constructed right first time, and does what it was designed to. Comprehensive technical support, coupled with proven system performance, reduces risk and removes uncertainty. A financial benefit from that is then seen over the life of the building.

Prioritising lower construction costs over a lower cost of ownership often proves to be a downfall. Inferior product quality, or shortcuts during construction, do not offer dependable and enduring performance. That leads to greater - and unwanted - outlay in the medium and long-term once the building is in service.

Why are guarantees important?

Guarantees are the perfect mechanism by which to capture the certainty and reduced risk that a system solution provides. The level of reassurance available can easily be masked, however, by the headline figure of the number of years the guarantee is for.

If a system approach is to be more widely understood and accepted, it means looking beyond that number and understanding the level of support offered by the system manufacturer. That includes things like design and specification advice, and on-site checks during installation.

It also means knowing that the system delivers what is promised, and knowing what is needed to ensure the validity of the guarantee. The guarantee has to be worth more than a piece of paper.

What extra value does a good guarantee provide?

While a system might incur a slightly higher capital cost, there is a benefit to the overall cost of construction. Knowing the system is installed in accordance with the specification means less potential for delay in the building of the envelope construction, and a reduced likelihood of delays later in the programme caused by poor workmanship or needing to call back contractors.

Once the building is operational, payback in the form of lower running costs and reduced maintenance quickly becomes evident. And there are other benefits that are less easily quantified. For example, good building envelope fabric performance provides a more controlled and comfortable internal environment that is good for the wellbeing of building users, meaning fewer sick days and happier occupants.

Extra value also comes from benefits such as removing the need for unnecessary annual inspections to maintain the guarantee’s validity - not only saving cost, but reducing future health and safety risks by avoiding work at height when it isn’t necessary. And it comes from attaching the guarantee to the building, so it is simple to transfer from one owner to the other if the building changes hands.

Platinum® Plus is a guarantee offered by Tata Steel on its building envelope solutions. A Tata Steel system backed by Platinum® Plus offers dependable and enduring performance, and lower cost of ownership for the life of the building. Speak to us to find out how a building envelope specification can benefit your project, and read more about Platinum® Plus here.

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