First and Second Fixes

In a recent news post on this site, I discussed the various different stages involved in building a new home. By necessity, this was a very brief overview of the aspects that can go into building a house from the initial purchase of a plot through to completion and moving in. Here, I’ll further discuss two of these stages: first fix and second fix.

Once you’ve got your plot, engaged a builder and the foundations are laid, first fix immediately follows on. First fix is all the elements that go into making a house or an extension prior to plaster going on to the walls. In its simplest terms, it’s a lot of the things that you don’t see when you move into your new home. All the wiring that carries electricity to lights and plug sockets and the pipes that carry water into and waste out of your house are included in the first fix.

After the internal plastering has been completed the second fix stage begins. Here, wiring is connected to plug sockets and light fittings, sinks and baths are plumbed in and doors are neatly hung in their frames. As you would expect, this stage requires a higher degree of finish than the first fix.

John Conroy and Son

At their most basic level, first and second fixes are terms that are readily understandable to a variety of contractors involved in the construction of a full build or an extension. They can be used to quickly explain where, in terms of the overall project, a build is. ‘We’re midway through the first fix…’ or ‘We’ve completed 90% of the second fix…’ lets you and other contractors know very clearly where the project stands.

Occasionally with some projects, builders and associated contractors will just be employed to carry out the first fix work. It may be that a homeowner is having an extension built and wants to carry out the second fix work him or herself. It is, of course, possible to do this but it is always vital in these cases to agree a schedule of work so that you (and your contractor) knows exactly what elements will comprise the first fix.

Whatever stage you’re at in your thoughts about a new home or an extension, do give us a ring on 0800 3118 321. The call is free and we’ll be very happy to discuss your ideas with you.