It is a process whereby the estimated cost is being checked against cost target set or elements of building and takes place during the design stage of contract. The cost checking process can be defined as being the assessment of the probable cost of the Architect¶s design, in step as it develops. The checks are carried out by the Quantity Surveyor and the control exercise of the Architect. In another words, cost checking is the process of checking the estimated cost of each section or element of the building as the detailed designs are developed, against the cost target set against it in the cost plan.





To make sure the cost of detail design prepared by the Architect does not exceed the cost target.

The principles of Cost Checking

The cost plan is the essential point of reference to which all cost checks must be referred. A cost check must be done on nothing more nor less than a complete element.


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A means of checking ` At this stage, detail design and specification already prepared by the design team, the QS can price the element by using Approximate Quantities method and inform the other members of the design team of the estimates for each element. ` This estimate cost for fully designed element is compared with the cost target for the element as expressed in the cost plan which this in fact is cost check for each element. ` If cost checking is not done, then all previous works are wasted and useless.


A means of remedial action. A remedial action must be taken within the time and budget allowance so that the objective (keeping expenditure within the amount allowed by client) is still achieved. If the cost of the element design is greater than a realistic cost target, the element design should be changed so that it is within the cost target. The QS would probably recommend that the design should be changed so that it is within the cost target.


A means of remedial action. However, if the cost check of the element design shows that the cost target is unrealistic, cost target should be adjusted throughout the cost plan, thereby increasing surplus funds for the element in trouble. The QS will not alter the overall cost limit but changed the cost plan as long as the cost limit not altered. If the cost of element design is just within the cost target, no remedial action will be necessary. The QS will inform the rest of design team that the design is confirmed and suitable for the preparation of the next stage.



If the cost is significantly within the target, then surplus funds may be released for other elements. If the remedial action were to produce a building of low quality, the design team need to inform the client if he wishes to release additional funds. Once all the element design have been cost checked, a final cost check is done. If one / two element not performed, the cost limit may be overspent and the purpose of cost control may not achieve.



Result 1. Cost Check § Cost Target

Action 1. Cost target is confirmed 1. Surplus fund subsidise element in situation 3 2. Elements upgraded 3. Surplus kept as reserved 1. 2. Use surplus fund in element in situation 2 Redesign ± lower the standard Inform client to put more money ± Cost Limit will increase
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2. Cost Check < Cost Target

3. Cost Check > Cost Target 3.