Saturday, August 11, 2012

Cost of a seaside flat: it's not just the view

An apartment near the sea is a hard to reach dream for many people. Purchase prices often reach record levels. And maintenance going forward is also a lot more expensive than for a regular dwelling.

People don't necessary realize that the construction price is higher when building next to the sea. Not only more concrete is required around the steel beams but a special water proofing of the concrete is also required, increasing the costs further. It also means a longer construction cycle. And because of the very high humidity, the wind and the salt present on the sea side, much higher standards need to be applied to almost all building materials. The concrete but also the type of stone cladding, the wood, the steel (used everywhere from safeguards to screws and that needs to be stainless) need to be specially designed for the rough environment.

Another factor to consider in when building close to the sea is groundwater. "Today, most buildings have underground parking and this requires the excavation. However, in a marine environment, unless it's on a cliff, we must conduct a search while pumping water, a massive job that requires time and specialized tools. The use of sealants is required and significantly increases the overall duration and cost of the project"said Rami Eid head of the construction department at Sami Shamoon (SCE).

Also, the authorities also have specific requirements for permits to construct a building near the sea. According to an engineer of the city of Hadera, Avishai Kimldorf, the "Program to strengthen buildings (CBP) has specific requirements for constructions near the sea. Protection of the marine environment require the use of certain materials and processes."

And lastly, construction tools need to be designed for the saline environment as well. Everything wears out much faster, steel rods cannot wait - and need to be used immediately. Even the cranes need to be soaked in grease. All in all, this can easily add up to 40% to the construction cost. No wonder a flat with a view can command such a premium!

Source Credit Israel

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