This photo illustrates some serious demolition. The quote we had from the 2nd builder for 'demolition work' (ie removing the back wall downstairs, and removing a couple of non-load bearing interior walls) was in the region of £12,000. The quote from the 3rd builder for the same was less than half this sum.
The 2nd builder has been chasing our architect for payment of the invoice, despite only issuing it a few days ago. The architect sent a very good email back: "Your estimation was for approx 8 hours of work which was agreed but I understand you expended considerably more time. You thus should have informed the client immediately as such dramatically increased time thus cost expenditure was not authorised. Furthermore the costings took significantly longer than expected: we anticipated this work to be completed by the end of May yet it was only recently delivered. I suggest you explain this when discussing the settlement of your invoice with the clients whose email addresses are included in this email: FYI WHAT_architecture is the agent of the client not the invoicing party."
Awesome. He's right. And it's VAT on top, so instead of paying £360 we've been invoiced for £634.50 and in effect are paying for him to quote as the so-called Bill of Quantities hasn't actually revealed any quantities - we're none the wiser about how much MDF, plasterboard or how many nails are actually required!
Rob is going to email requesting a proper breakdown as we're paying for it, and it will be useful when ordering items for the build.