Setting realistic property development expectations

Realistic. That’s what you need to be during the development of a property, however ambitious you or your design blueprints may be.

It’s vital to make pragmatic decisions and to manage your expectations properly – financially speaking or when it comes to setting reasonable construction deadlines.

Throughout development, any number of problems could arise and cause your goalposts to move.

For example, important materials such as bricks – which we are currently experiencing a shortage of – could become unavailable, causing a delay in project completion and resulting in spiralling costs and unnecessary stress.

During these times, it’s crucial that you remain rational and adjust your expectations to be more realistic about your outcomes. Transparency is vital during the entire process.

Be transparent

Before you begin, you need to plan. Go into more detail than you need to. Go overboard. Ease everyone’s worries by outlining exactly what you are expecting during the development timeline.

Be professional. Assess potential shortcomings before you start. Where might you go wrong? Make sure everybody – whether they’re involved with construction or finance matters – understands the potential risks involved.

Know the project’s strengths and weaknesses, and be prepared.

Be flexible

Channel your inner chameleon. Change your colours and quickly adapt to change, from situations that arise at the laying of the first brick, to contractual issues nearer completion.

The quicker you can switch focus during a new set of circumstances, and shuffle your expectations accordingly, the more successful the project will become.

If a certain building material isn’t available, have alternatives in mind and quickly move onto them if need be.

Set sensible timescales

It can be difficult to deal with deadlines in any walk of life. Don’t set one unless you can fully commit and have plans in place if you do overrun.

Realistic timeframes are essential.

Budget accordingly

Be aware of all costs. Prepare for budget shifts and manage your finances professionally throughout the project, from start to finish.

If you’ve seen Grand Designs, you’ll understand everything we’re saying.

Short-term finance can provide the support needed to get a project out of the ground and through to completion.

Speak to Affirmative about development finance on 08000 44 84 84, or email us at