By: Luka Dickson

In the complex world of construction projects, disputes are not uncommon. These disputes can arise from various issues, such as incomplete work, substandard quality, or disagreements over costs. When it comes to resolving these disputes, one essential player steps in: the quantity surveyor. These professionals, and their construction estimating services, play a pivotal role in ensuring that construction claims are thoroughly examined and adjudicated, ultimately contributing to fair and just outcomes.

Who Are Quantity Surveyors & What Are Cosntruction Estimating Services?

Quantity surveyors are highly qualified individuals with expertise in cost estimation, construction processes, and legal standards. They play a vital role in construction projects by providing construction estimating services. This ensures projects stay within budget, and costs are accurately assessed. Quantity surveyors are registered with a governing body such as AIQS (Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyor) to receive certification.

Quantity surveyors are often involved from the project’s inception, providing cost estimates, preparing tender documents, and helping control project costs. Their comprehensive knowledge of construction processes and their ability to assess costs accurately make them valuable assets in construction projects.

Construction Disputes: A Common Occurrence

Construction disputes, while not the desired outcome, are a common occurrence in the construction industry, especially given recent inflationary pressures, supply shocks and uncertainty broadly within the construction industry. These disputes can involve disagreements between parties, often rooted in financial matters. It could be a claim regarding incomplete work, the quality of work, or, quite frequently, disputes over costs. Regardless of the nature of the dispute, resolving these issues requires careful examination and the expertise of professionals who can accurately assess costs.

The Role of Quantity Surveyors in Dispute Resolution

Quantity surveyors are often called upon to assist in resolving construction disputes, and their expertise in construction estimating services plays a crucial role in the process. These professionals bring specialised knowledge and impartiality to complex legal proceedings. They are typically retained as expert witnesses to provide independent, informed opinions on complex construction-related matters.

In the context of dispute resolution, quantity surveyors undertake several critical tasks:

Comprehensive Data Assessment: Quantity surveyors meticulously assess all relevant data and documentation related to the construction dispute. This includes contracts, project plans, cost breakdowns, and any additional documents relevant to the case.

Cost Calculation: Their expertise in construction estimating services enables quantity surveyors to accurately calculate the costs involved in the dispute. They consider various factors such as labour, materials, overhead, and other project-related expenses.

Independent Evaluation: Quantity surveyors provide an unbiased and independent evaluation of the costs, ensuring that their findings are based on their professional expertise and a commitment to fairness.

Report Generation: A crucial part of their role is generating a comprehensive report that outlines the issues at hand, the facts, and the calculations they used to reach their conclusions. These reports are presented to the tribunal or court to provide a clear understanding of the cost-related aspects of the dispute.

How Quantity Surveyors Calculate Construction Dispute Costs

Documentation Review: Quantity surveyors carefully review all project documentation, including contracts, invoices, and cost estimates, to understand the project’s financial aspects thoroughly.

Cost Breakdown: They break down the costs into different categories, such as direct costs (labour and materials) and indirect costs (overheads, administrative costs, etc.). Quantity surveyors must have years of experience in the construction industry before they can advise as an expert witness. Therefore, they also have a good and accurate knowledge of cost changes over time.

Comparative Analysis: Quantity surveyors compare the disputed costs with industry standards and market rates to ensure that the costs are in line with prevailing practices.

Expert Opinions: Their expertise allows them to form independent expert opinions on the costs involved, providing a valuable perspective to the dispute resolution process.

The Importance of Accuracy and Impartiality

Accuracy and impartiality are paramount in the role of quantity surveyors in calculating construction dispute costs. Their findings influence the outcome of legal proceedings, making it essential to maintain the highest standards of professionalism and fairness. Despite being recruited by one of the parties involved in the dispute, they must remain impartial to ensure that all parties involved can trust the assessment. Accuracy guarantees that the costs are assessed correctly and fairly.

The Legal Process and Quantity Surveyors

In the legal process, expert witness reports and findings by quantity surveyors are presented and evaluated in court. The weight given to their opinions depends on various factors, including their credibility, methodology, and relevance. Judges and tribunals rely on the expert opinions provided by quantity surveyors to make informed decisions.

Construction Estimating Services in Australia

At Accent Estimating, our team of expert, registered quantity surveyors pride ourselves on providing reliable and detailed construction estimating services. Our experienced team assures accurate information and support to all builders and contractors. We believe all parties involved deserve a fair deal, and a fast, streamlined development process.  

If you would like to find out more about our estimating services available in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane, call us on 0413 953 869 or fill out the contact form on our website.