How to Install Laminate Floor


Laminate floor and Accessories, a European import now gradually gaining grounds in Nigeria, is amazingly effective at imitating wood, tile, stone, and other materials. The surface of laminate flooring is a highly detailed photographic image that is overlaid with transparent, extremely durable plastic laminate (similar to the material used for counter-tops). It isn’t until you actually touch the grout joints or scan for natural imperfections that you realize the flooring is not what it appears to be..

How Laminate Flooring Is Made

The base material is a melamine/aluminum oxide/fiberboard composite product, often medium-density fiberboard (MDF). A backing layer is then added to prevent moisture seepage, which can damage the planks.


Once you have purchased your wooden floor, you may need some accessories that are designed to finish the overall look of the floor.

When you are installing laminate floors, you will need to use a floor underlay to apply your flooring to the subfloor. Some of these underlays are damp proof or sound proof to suit specific requirements.

After your underlay, you may need to look for matching profiles to hide away unsightly edges or pipe holes. 
For laminate profiles, there are skirtings, doorends, concaveline, t-moulding, Stairnose moldings and door bars. Your choice of adhesive is also an important part of your installation tools.

From floor installation kits, sealants, and pullbars, there are many bargain flooring accessories on offer in terms of installing your flooring.  Also, to help maintain your floor, it is also advisable to look at the relevant flooring maintenance kits. If you do your part in taking care of your flooring, it can last well beyond its expected lifespan.

Laminate Flooring Installation

Laminate flooring requires a reasonably flat, smooth base such as vinyl, plywood, tile, or hardwood flooring (but not carpeting); a flat, smooth concrete slab is acceptable, but it’s wise to apply a vapor barrier before putting laminate on a slab. Each manufacturer of laminate flooring products offers complete installation instructions.

How to Install

Follow the directions implicitly if you do the installation yourself :

Before installing the material, allow it to sit in the room for two or three days to acclimate to the room’s humidity and temperature. Cut the pieces using a power saw.Be advised that strong light glancing across the surface—such as from a large window or patio door—may illuminate seams; to minimize the visibility of seams between plank-style flooring, run the material perpendicular to such doors or windows.If you are installing a laminate floor in a bathroom, you must be particularly careful to join and seal the edges of the planks according to the manufacturer’s directions to prevent moisture from seeping between or below the planks. Also check the product’s warranty to be sure it covers this type of installation.Over time, ground-in dirt will cause small scratches, so it pays to keep laminate floors clean. Picking up dust or loose dirt is easily done with a dust mop or vacuum; for more in-depth cleaning, use a damp mop or damp towel, but don’t saturate or allow water to stand on the floor. Do not use abrasives or scouring powder, polishes, or waxes.Touch-up sticks are available from some manufacturers for deep scratches. Following installation, it pays to keep a few extra pieces in case damaged areas need replacement.

For more info, visit us at RUBY & JADE LTD (the Laminate Floor company in lagos) , No 13, Adeoyo Street off Isolo Road Mushin.

Or call 08053045426,0902543719.

We deals in laminate floors and accessories. (to be cont…)



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Factors affecting cost of Construction

  • Fluctuation in currency exchange rate-The production of basic components requires importation of some materials, in time of downfall in naira to dollar, we can see the effect in the immediate 100% rise in price of cement and other materials.
  • Dependency on foreign materials for construction-For materials gotten out of the country, determination of prices may be difficult, it will either goes up or down in most cases there is always an arbitrary rise in cost.
  • Theft-Adequate security must be provided for materials if not they will be stolen and you will need to replace them.
  • Contract Management-Schedule by timing and milestones with cost should be maintained, but for every fluctuation it must be clear to the contractor and the client. Any delay or not keeping with the specifications will affect cost of production.
  • Use of Quacks-Professionals actually saves money, it is advisable you use them to forestall costly errors in construction which can result in demolition and rebuilding which ultimately affects the final cost of construction.
  • Economic instability-Just as we have in Nigeria, cost of construction have one high across board.
  • Fluctuation of prices of materials-In a volatile economy , it is increasingly difficult to peg price of materials, this also affects the final cost of construction.
  • Poor planning-If you fail to plan, you already planned to fail. Tasks have sequence, you need to have a good plan to forestall or reduce wastages
  • Experience-Contractor’s experience will also affects how best you save money. Wastages will be reduced with an experienced contractor
  • Size-Size or numbers of project can give you a comparative advantage. The more the quantities of materials you are to purchase, the better the option of getting a good discount.
  • Quality or type of material- In most cases better quality materials gives better product but they are also costlier.
  • Type or Construction method- These are buildings that requires specialist input, of course you hire them with a lot of money.
  • Types of building-Houses made with mud,brick, blocks or concrete will also differs in prizes.
  • Financial status of owners- The reason architects demand the amount you are willing to commit on the project will determine the type of building been proposed for you.
  • Taste of owner/client-High class building with lots of luxury will definitely makes cost to go up.
  • Project Site Accessibility-If road leading to your site is not motorable, is either additional cost of the road will have to be added or the cost of labour of retransporting materials from a convenient spot to the site by labourers will be factored into the cost.
  • Government taxes, policies etc- There are areas you build that government will require you pay some money before they can allow you to build. Government regulations can make your cost to go high.
  • Omoonile/ site nuisances-These things can actually influence the cost of building if they aren’t properly handled.
  • Land dispute-If you have commenced construction and there are those laying claims to the ownership of the land, expect to spend money on legal fees etc before final settlements
  • Professional fees-This varies, it can be high for high networth professional and low for starters, all still contribute to cost of construction
  • Negotiation skill from contractor and owner
  • Agreement and clarity of a project- For a project that is not well understood by owner and contractor avoidable errors will affect cost of construction.
  • Competition- When there stiff competition cost of material and engaging professionals may likely drop.
  • Social Problems-Ethnic issues, religious issues and cultural issues also determines style of building which also affects cost.
  • Site preliminaries, overheads when overlook can cost you a lot which can affect significantly the total cost of construction.
  • Using non-professional family members- this has always resulted to fraud for many building owners, avoid it.
  • Labour rates –Labour rates differs for each area, the area site is located will determine the labour rate you use in your estimation.
  • Material cost
  • Project schedule
  • Contigency
  • Mechanised equipments- Will affects either price up or down depending on the scale of project.
  • Designing with even number of two feet increments- From the architect, this contributes in reducing wastages during construction as materials are in multiples of the module.
  • Number of Storeys- The higher you climb the higher the cost
  • Type of roof- complex roof will cost more.
  • Finishes-Good finishes will likely go with a higher cost.
  • Design features-Swimming pool, garden, carpark etc
  • Purpose of building-For building that will accommodate more people, machineries etc will require targeted structural designs that may cost more.

Church and mosque buildings for instance are always higher than normal residential bungalow.

  • Expectant lifespan will also affect the structural detailing which will also affect cost
  • Procurement method- You can buy in bulk which is cheaper and direct from wholesalers or manufacturers to buying from retailers
  • Environmental factors-
  • Climatic Conditions- Cost of construction can go higher during rainy season due to disturbances
  • Fraud from family members, contractors, suppliers etc.




Damp: Causes, Effects, Prevention and Cure

Dampness in a simple term is when excess water molecule is on building which results to visible growth of mould and destruction or disturbance of wall surfaces and materials.


1 Rain If the roof is not well constructed to take out water rain, it may lead to dampness on walls due to leakages down from roof to wall.

2 Faulty Plumbing System-Leaking pipes will cause water to affect the building, which also leads to dampness.

3 Waterlogged soil-Moisture in the soil can rise up into the building through capillary action and cause dampness in building.

4 Area susceptible to extreme flood and bad weather condition.

5 Area close to canal/gully etc which can experience an overflow of water.

6 Using wet or unseasoned building materials.

7 Air conditioning system-When hot humid air comes in contact with materials cooled by the airconditioning process, it causes condensation on the liquid water on the surfaces.

8 Indoor activities-Which releases moisture into the air like cooking, dishwashing, clothes washing, bathing etc.

9 Roof- Leak from bad slate/tile or cracked concrete gutter will increase build up of moisture in walls ,timber and plaster.

10 Poor quality works-Water penetration through walls can occur as a result of inadequately installed roof covering,improper treatment or covering of oversite concrete.

11 Use of non porous or breathable coatings on walls-Such as fine cement render and oil paint. When moisture is absorbed through fine cracks in the coatings but can’t then evaporate back out through the waterproof surface.

12 Higher external ground level around the property. That is when the building level is lower to the road and the surrounding environment.



  1. It causes efflorescence which may ultimately result in disintegration of bricks, stones, tiles etc.
  2. Causes rotting of wood.
  3. Deteriorate electric installations.
  4. It may result in softening and crumbling of plaster.
  5. Causes petting off and removal of plaster.
  6. It may cause bleaching and flaking of paint with the formation of coloured patches.
  7. It may result in the warping, buckling and rotting of timber.
  8. It may lead to the corrosion of metals.
  9. It may cause deterioration to electrical fittings.
  10. It promotes growth of termites.

It creates unhealthy living conditions for the occupants.

  1. Causes corrosion of metallic fixtures.
  2. Deteriorate carpet & furniture’s.
  3. Causes spots on the floors and walls.
  4. Causes petting off and removal of plaster.
  5. Causes bleaching and blistering of paints.
  6. Causes effloresce.
  7. Dangerous for the health of occupants.
  8. Reduce the life of structures.



1 Introducing damp proof course during construction of foundation especially in waterlogged area.

2 Using raft foundation mostly in waterlogged area.

3 proper concrete mix ratio and fine aggregates which helps to make concrete impervious.

4 Adequate concrete thickness.

5 Using bitumen on concrete roof surfaces.

6 Mixing waterproof cement with concrete.

7 Using breathable paint.

8 cavity wall construction- This is shielding the main wall of the building by an outer skin wall leaving a cavity in between the two. The cavity prevents the moisture from travelling from the outer to the inner walls (Reason why hollow blocks are popular in Lagos, while solid blocks are used more on higher level grounds like Benin city etc)


1 Block every leaks from internal plumbing systems i.e replace damaged pipes and make sure the joints are properly sealed.

2 Repair leaking water and damaged overflow downpipes.

3 Repair damaged below ground drainages.

4 Pipe away rainwater from roof out of building either to main drain or soakaway.

5 Check and repair blockages to downpipes.

6 Avoid trees of strong roots too close to the building to stop cracks on walls and damage to pipes.

7 lower the groundfloor outside the building if possible.

8 Opening up a building to allow air to flow in and out is important-The problem with long inhabited buildings.

9 Use of vents in buildings

10 Breathable or permeable internal paints to allow the dispersal of moisture from a plastered wall.


Why Estimates goes wrong

Having the right estimate helps the contractor and clients in their planning and helps to reduce tension alot during construction. Variations eats deep into budgets and can really destabilises entire projects when is on the negative side.

(1)Unusual/ bad benchmarking-This is when you’ve done similar projects before and you use exact rates to cost the proposed ones not minding no two projects can be exactly the same. Topography, nature of soil etc can mess up your benchmarking.

(2)Unclear/Incomplete designs- The drawings when not adequately detailed may leads to assumptions of materials require. Often these assumptions are bloated and in other cases grossly inadequate.

(3)Untested Innovations/Techniques- Various techniques are used in construction with additional innovations, the estimator may be ignorant of some processes in constructionmethods which can cause serious oversite in estimating.

(4)Contractors desperation- Quest for job may make a contractor to quote a very low cost for a project just o escape financial lack/loosing the job to other competitors. This will surely bounce back and affect the entire project. An estimator and contractor that must cut costs by reducingonly rates without change in materials may run into such problems.

(5)Pressure of over reduction by client-In the bid to save money yet still maintaining good quality and standard, many clients puts pressure on their contractors to reduce the cost of construction beyond reasonable/acceptable level. Out of ignorance on anybody’s part the client request may be acceeded to by an unscrupulous contractor/estimator which will cause bitterness and dissapointments afterwards as project progresses.

(6)Not employing a Qualified Quantity Surveyor before and after project construction- Qs’es are not only needed before construction, as work progresses they are useful for guiding our expenses, deployment of materials, payments of workers,proper records on financial activities and variations etc. Overall they help guide and keep you focus on your project, as they help to notify you of financial implications of every decision taken concerning the project before it is executed.

(7)Unexpected Environmental situations-Environmental factors can slow the wheel of progress on site and ultimately affect cost. Consider flooding which can slow the work,destroy some materials and jerk up the cost of construction.

(8)Human Incursions/Nuisance-Construction time can be affected when social miscreants disturbs construction. Settling them may take unexpected delays, material could be lost which will affect the cost.

(9)Market fluctuations-Of course prices of materials especially cement fluctuates alot in this part of the world. There are more construction activities in the dry season, hence higher demands on construction materials which also raises the cost of these materials. If you already have a lower markup, the estimate will no longer be adequate, variations must be added which will overshoot the initial budget.

(10)Change in specifications-As project progresses, design changes and clients new requirements will affect the estimate no matter how small the changes.

(11)Redesigning or Remodelling-Again when you adjust initial designs like internal walls been shifted to make some rooms more spacious or redesigning the elevations can cause a big difference in cost of construction.

(12)Procurement Timing-You must procure some materials intime to avoid higher cost.

(13) Not buying in bulk or purchasing ore than required can also affect your estimate greatly.

(14)Inadequate or wrong measurement of plan-If there are errors in reading the plan or attention not being paid to details during construction, the estimate will run into problems.

(15)Wastages-Though there should be room in the estimate to cater for wastages , however without proper management on site you may record wastages that will affect the estimate.

(16)Accidents-Insurance will have to cover for accidents onsite if there is any but for anyone without insurance and there is an unexpected occurences the project will have to suffer the bills.

(17)Improper or absence of statutory legal documentations- If right approvals aren’t gotten or there are issues this may cause stoppage of work, paying penalties etc which will also affects the estimate.

(18)Dispute on Property-For a project that will be disturbed by legal problems this will ultimately affect total cost of construction due to delays etc

(19)Theft of materials on site

(20)Logistics and Preliminaries,process hurdles


Advantages of Steel in Building Construction

As industrialization and search for better ways of construction, the need to also look at the possibilities in using steel more can’t be overemphasized.

(1)Speed of Construction- Construction with steel is fastest among the different materials of construction , most time you fabricates from your factory or shops and only installs on site.

(2)Low cost- In comparative high volume buildings constructing with steel becomes cheaper because you cover greater spans with steel.

(3) Longer spans- This is good especially when you are thinking of avoiding too many columns especially in auditorium that requires good view from the audience.

(4)Malleability- Under certain condition steel becomes malleable and can be shapen to any form which helps to achieve the designer’s vision.

(5)High Strength-Steel has good strength, thats one of the reasons is used for lots of multistorey structures. it can withstand pressure and can be very stable compare to others.

(6)Slenderness-Steel doesn’t take so much space compare to others. The design networks of steel structure can also be aesthetically pleasing.

(7)Good design flexibility and versatility.

(8)Lower weight- You obviously can’t compare the weight of a building built with concrete to that of steel.

(9)Recyclability and sustainability-Street is reusable as you can dismantle and reassemble elsewhere with little or no defects, very sustainable as it can’t be damaged by pests nor does it requires preservatives or glues. Is inorganic so it can’t rot.

(10)Modifiable-You can also adjust steel construction with a degree of ease.

(11)Reliability and Predictability- Due to high strength steel is quite useful in construction and very reliable, its stable and predictable.

(12)Mass production and availability-The steel can be mass produced during fabrication which gives room for efficiency and speed.

(13)Durability-Because is not organic, better resistance to fire etc it lasts longer than most construction materials substitutes.

(14)Minimal waste-Steel has minimal raw material wastes.

(15)Maintenance-You do less maintenance with steel as it doesn’t really degenerate in any form for a very long time.

(16)Fire Protection-Better resistance against fire outbreaks.

(17)Less weight-The weight is far less to most structural materials hence requires simpler foundation construction.

(18)Lower floor construction depths- Concrete floor averagely is 6″ or 150mm but steel won’t require such thickness to be used as a floor.

(19)Because of its slender nature, more space are available for other integrated services like electrical, CCTV etc.

(20)It is safe to handle with hands by workers using it on site.

Benefits of buying an approved building plan land from a developer

1-Sign that most papers have been legalised for you to have an approved building plan, especially in Lagos where you must have your C of O or governor’s consent, your survey is also registered with the government. Hence you are sure that lots of legal works have been covered for you, of course you can spend a whole year processing these documents.

2-Time is also a big factor, you can move to site and start working the very day you buy the land. This will help to reduce and save time if you want to start immediately.

3-Authentication of plan- Approved plan is a pseudo authentication of your plan to meet up with basic standard. For a fresh design that needs to go through the process of approval, the plan may be rejected if you aren’t meeting up with their regulations, but in this case that has been taken care of, so you have more time to engage in other tasks.

4-You are likely to save money because for a plan to be approved the petitioner probably knows more about his ways around building approving process, unlike giving it to an inexperienced person to do it for you.

5-Inflation-There is also the risk of inflation catching up with the price of materials for the period you have to wait for the approval process

6-It also shows there is acceptable and standard drawing for your building project . That also verifies you are going to have a good house.

7-Of course there won’t be any form of harassment from the town planning authorities.
8-The best price – the first properties released usually go for the cheapest, because the developers need fast early sales. Once they meet their financial requirements, they often up the purchase price on the remaining properties to make up for lost profits.
9-The buyer has one point of contact allowing for more accurate completion estimates.
There’s no confusion about roles and responsibilities. Not only does the buyer know who to contact, a developer also knows they’re responsible for every step of the process.
10-There’s a single vision for the property. When a developer knows they are going to be building and selling the properties, it’s often easier to make decisions about planning, architecture and even landscaping.
11-There are fewer delays in building because some tasks can be done in tandem when the same company is doing the both the developing and construction.
12-A developer takes a long-term, holistic view of the investment allowing cost-savings passed on to the buyer.
Developers and builders have distinct goals that can sometimes be very different. When a single company is managing everything, the buyer benefits from a single focus. The property is managed and constructed from one viewpoint making it easier for the buyer and more cost effective.

Benefits of Storey Buildings

Despite some disadvantages of storey buildings, the advantages far outweighs the disadvantages. Some are enumerated below.

(1) Extra height gives good view, distinct and clear view from surrounding structures unlike one floor bungalow that may have been covered with perimeter fence.

(2)The buildings are more visible from a distance to one floor bungalow

(3)Distinct separation of private area from public area. For a two storey duplex, the bedrooms are taken up while the living rooms that are accessible to visitors are left downstairs, this is good for privacy and less noise around the bedrooms.

(4)Security-You can isolate the upper floor from the ground floor with a security door by the staircase in case of any attack. Burglars can’t easily access the upper floor through the windows. It also gives you a clear view of in case of any intruder lurking around the fence.

(5)Interesting features-Storey buildings can be interesting, climbing through a well designed staircase looking at the structure in whole can be quite pleasing to the eyes.

(6)Better aeration- More space is created for effective air circulation as the upper floor create rooms for additional rooms and windows and are most unlikely to be blocked by adjacent walls/fence.

(7)Increase of space-Of course there is far effective use of land space per square meter.

(8)Storey buildings adapts well to sloped site, a creative architect can design a very aesthetically pleasing building with such soil.

(9)Social Issues- In some clime, it is taken that those on storey buildings usually look down on those downstairs.

Advantages of a one floor bungallow to storey buildings

Apart from the space required, a one floor bungallow has lots of advantages over a storey building some of them are (1) Lighter foundation: The weight of a floor bungallow is far less to a storey building hence you’ll require far less materials to that of a storey building.

(2) Few or no columns/pillars in the house: Depends on design and nature of soil you may not need concrete columns in a floor bungallow. For most storey building you will need it to help transmit load from upper floor to the soil.

(3) Lower fire risk: It is easier to escape fire incidence and the electrical works on a storey building is more complex which can also leads to fire incidence if there are defects.

(4)Easier Maintenance:Plumbing pipes, electrical installations and the building generally are easier to maintain when is only a floor bungallow. You can easily remove plumbing pipes and replace , unlike a multistorey building that may have pipes embedded in concrete.

(5)One floor bungallow can be easily expanded as long as there is adequate land for for the expansion. Storey building ca be quite complex, you need a lot of engineering input and cost for expansion.

(6)Easier evacuation: In emergency, you are already on the groundfloor, you can jump through the window and you also have closer access to the external door which will help you to move out of the building quickly.

(7)Cost of Construction: From the professional fee,labour costs which will be far higher in case of a storey building to the materials that will be used like scaffold, iron rods, wood ,cement etc in higher quantities to a floor bungallow.

(8)Climbing stairs: For the aged,climbing stairs could be a daunting task.

(9)Possibilities of falling and injuring yourself in a stairway

(10)Just like ‘6’ ease of moving in and out is harder for a storey building

(11)Banging/stamping/pounding on floor upstairs may cause discomfort to occupants downstairs but this can’t be possible for a floor bungallow.

(12)Carrying materials, furniture etc in and out a storey building is harder.

(13)Storey buildings also have psychological effects on lower surrounding buildings, it gives feeling of someone looking down on people at lower level.

(14)Higher building will also block a proportion of air and sun from getting into closer lower buildings.

(15)And for town planning authority , they will charge you more to get approval for a storey building

(16)Storey buildings can also block clear views of people enjoying the landscape of an area.

(17)Storey building can be a threat when they are close to the airport.

How to build a duplex in one month

Supervising your building or executing your building project without being shortchanged is always the greatest fear of a would be owner.
Understanding that building project costs a substantial sum especially when the taste is high for a salary earner, it is imperative to minimise lost from unscrupulous contractors and nothing can be as fulfilling seeing your house grows from conceptual stage through foundation and ultimately to completion. The objective is to be able to build your house during your leave off work which is usually one month.
For a businessman or a salary earner that can only affords a leave of one month, you can be a witness in the process of building your house, however you need good planning in time,money allocation,labour and materials.
For this project we will discuss a storey building and we are assuming on a fairly stable soil that can allow for a strip foundation.
To get it right, you must be conversant with the stages for an average building project which I will list as follows
1-Clearing of site —————————————cutlass etc
2-setting out ————————–profiles,pegs,nails,rope,builder or advance instruments
3-Digging ——————————— digger,shovel
4-Casting of foundation———————————-cement,sand,granite/gravel,water,iron rods for pillar base
5-foundation blockworks——————————- blocks,cement,sharpsand,water
6-laterite filling———————————-Filling sand
7-Ramming———————————————ramming machine,water
8-oversite concrete or german floor——————–iron rods,hardcore,dpc membrane,cement,sand,granite,water
9-Blockwork on groundfloor to window base—————sharpsand,cement,water
10-blockwork from window base to lintel level———–sharpsand,cement,water
11-Lintel —————————————-wood,iron rods,nails,granite
12-Blockwork after lintel —————————————–blocks,sharpsand,water
13-23.First floor concrete decking ———————– iron rods,sharpsand,granite, water,planks,2b3 wood,nails,binding wire
24-Blockwork on firstfloor to window base————- sharpsand ,blocks,cement,water
25-Blockwork from window base to lintel level———–sharpsand,blocks,water,cement
26-Lintel ——————— granite/gravel,sand,cement,1by12 planks,nails, binding wire
27-Blockwork after lintel to roof beam/ ———–sharpsand,blocks,water,cement
concrete facial/parapet
28-Roof beam/concrete facial/parapet———–granite,sharpsand,cement,planks,2by3 ,nails
29-Roof—————————————-wood,nails etc
30-Roof covering—————————— aluminium,stone coat etc


To get the program of work right you must atleast have an idea of the manpower required for each task because this will help you to request for the right numbers of people else artesans will always be shut in numbers thereby prolonging the time you could have used and work will spillover to the next day.
For the plan above, we will consider tasks,materials,finance required and the labour for our planning.
There are tasks that can go independently, identify such and use it to reduce your time frame, this is important in program of work.
For effectiveness, provide materials for each task two days before the task therefore money must be ready and the labour calculated before the task.
DAY 1-clearing,purchase setting out materials,digging equipments,water(borehole)
DAY2-setting out,order foundation casting materials,order for short pillars iron rods
DAY3-digging,order for foundation blocks,order for sharpsand,granite,iron rods
DAY4-casting of foundation,cast precast lintels for groundfloor windows ,order for filling sand
DAY5-foundation blockwork,cast short pillars,get ramming machine or manual rammer
DAY6-filling-order for oversite concret/german floor materials-iron rods,
DAY7-ramming,order for blocks for grondfloor to window level
DAY8-placements of iron rods etc
DAY9-oversite concrete/german floor,order for blocks from window base to lintel level,cast firstfloor precast lintel
DAY10-blockwork for groundfloor to window level,order for blocks after lintel
DAY11-blockwork from window base to lintel level,order for decking materials
DAY12-lintel,blockwork after lintel level
DAY13-DAY23 decking, order for blocks for first floor to window base
DAY24-blockwork on firstfloor to window base
DAY25-blockwork from window base to lintel level,order blockwork after lintel to roof
DAY26-lintel,blockworks to roof
DAY27-roof beam, order for roof covering
DAY29-roof covering
You have to realise to achieve this you must be able to give an estimate for labour required for each task,the project may also cost more due to speed.
The most problematic of the stages are those of concrete and woodworks, so for every other tasks, give two days to order for material, for the concrete we may need 7 days to prepare for the task.. Some stages that goes independently will help to save time as well.
For the window lintels, know the dimensions of the windows from the plan, cast the lintel by using a board that can accomodate the length and the allowance needed seven days before you’ll need to place the lintel.
Now lets give an estimate for manpower for each task
DAY1= clearing for one plot-3 persons
DAY2 =setting out(one builder,one bricklayer,one labourer)-3 persons
DAY3= digging-for digging know the total trench from your structural or architectural plan, take one partition to be 3.6m and by experience one labour to 4 partitions=11.4meters trench for each labourer. For the plan above our total trench is taken as 114m, divide by 14.4=8 labourers
DAY4 =casting of foundation-also know the volume of concrete you’ll cast, take 2m3 for each labour and divide .For instance, the totall for our plan is 12m3. Divide 12m3 by 2m3=6 labourers
DAY5=Calculate like day4
DAY6=foundation blockwork-, a bricklayer is required to lay 100 blocks per day, so know the numbers of blocks you’ll need then divide by 100. For our plan we need 1000 blocks for 4 coaches, divide this by 100=10 bricklayers . Add one labourer to a bricklayer as well, that is we need 10 bricklayers and 10 labourers to serve them.
DAY7=filling-one labourer should be able to tip one tipper load of 20tons , so for 13 trips we will need 13 labourers for our plan.
DAY8=ramming-use of mahines or 2 labourers/100m2 surface area
DAY9=iron rods
DAY10=oversite concrete-calculate total volume and divide by 2m3 for each labourer. 26/2=13 labourers for our plan
DAY11=Calculate like day6
DAY12=Calculate like day6
DAY13 TO DAY23=FIRSTFLOOR CONCRETE DECKING-for woodwork use surface area of standard 2 rooms i.e 2(3.6 x 3.6) for a carpenter .Therefore for a total surface area of 168m2 divide by 26m2=7 carpenters. For concrete divide total volume by 2m3 i.e 26m3/2=13 labourers. for iron rods use 2 iron benders/ton.
DAY24=Calculate like day6
DAY25=Calculate like day6
DAY27=roof beam,calculate for concrete,woodworks+iron rods as shown previously
DAY28=roof,calculate for wood
DAY29=roof covering

How to calculate timber works in concrete lintel

A lintel in architectural terms is defined as a structural horizontal element/block/material that spans the space or opening between two vertical supports.
Is a loadbearing member of part of a building that is usually placed over entrances, windows,arcs and other openings in the building.
Lintel can be of wood,concrete,bamboo,steel etc depends on the materials for construction, for our study we are working on concrete lintel which is commonly used in the tropical region like nigeria.
The lintel must bear loads that rests on it as well as its own load without deforming or breaking. Brick stone or ordinary concrete are weak in tensile strength, so they can only be used for a limited span 6meters maximum ideally, but iron/steel can be used for longer lintels. Reason you need to introduce adequate iron rods in the concrete lintel to be able to resist the compressive stress of concrete and span longer openings.
To cast the concrete lintel in a building you’ll need to consider the doors,windows, beam by the entrances, beam by the entrance porch between two or more columns, ars in the interior and exterior.
Now knowing the numbers of planks you are going to use, you must first have at the back of your mind the length and breadth of each plank which is 3.6m or 12ft by 0.3m or 1 foot.
2 bedroom bungalow plan

For the plan above, we have two options, for a building with a lot of openings you can simply run the lintel as a beam round the entire perimeter blocks, but for others with less openings the conccrete lintel should be placed ontop of openings giving allowances on right and left for the beam to rest on the supports thereby transmitting load through the blocks or whatever the vertical supports to the ground.

Calculating for windows and doors openings only, check opening in sides A,B,C and D dimensions.
A -1200mm or 1.2m, 2400mm or 2.4m
C-1.2m,1.2m and 2.4m
D-1.2m,0.6m and 1.2m
For each openings remember there must be an extension to allow the concrete lintel to overlap both ways. The longer the openings the longer the space you should provide for the concrete to overlap. From experience 30% of the opening should be be used for the two sides overlap.


For our calculation 2(30% of window)+window
For side A
– 1.2m will be taken as 2(30% of 1.2)+1.2=1.92
– 2.4m will be taken as 2(30% of 2.4)+2.4=3.84
For side B
– 2.4m will be taken as 2(30% of 2.4)+2.4=3.84
For side C
– 1.2m will be taken as 2(30% of 1.2)+1.2=1.92
– 1.2m will be taken as 2(30% of 1.2)+1.2=1.92
– 2.4m will be taken as 2(30% of 2.4)+2.4=3.84
For side D
– 1.2m will be taken as 2(30% of 1.2)+1.2=1.92
– 0.6m will be taken as 2(30% of 0.6)+0.6=0.96
– 1.2m will be taken as 2(30% of 1.2)+1.2=1.92
Now planks will be used to support the concrete both sides and under the concrete which is the top of the opening.
For ease of calculation. Add all lengths i.e 1.92+3.84+3.84+1.92+1.92+3.84+1.92+0.96+1.92=22.08
Divide the sum by a length of plank which is 3.6m
22.08/3.6=6 planks
Now multiply by 3 because you need the planks for two sides and under
=18 planks for the windows.

Is to run the lintel round the perimeter, so calculate the perimeter from plan.
A=9.4m+1.35m(wall that leads to front entrance door)
C=9.4m+1.2m+1.2m (walls that leads to door behind- both sides)
Add all the dimensions 9.4+1.35+9.0+9.4+1.2+1.2+9.0=40.55m
Divide by 3.6m as a length of plank=11 planks
multiply by 2 for both sides of lintel=22 planks
Now you need to add the base of the windows which the sum is 22.08m from previous calculations, we use this because planks will also be used to brace the planks at the base of concrete.
22.08 divide by 3.6m =6 planks
Total planks=22+6=28 planks

For the door follow same process,
All doors are taken to be 0.9 (900mm)
2(30% of 0.9)+0.9=1.44
Doors are 8 in numbers
1.44 x 8=11.52m
Divide by 3.6m (remember 3.6m or 12 feet is the length of a plank=3.2 planks
Then multiply by 3 =10 planks for the doors.
TOTAL ALL add 28 plus 10=38 planks if the concrete must run round.
OR 18 plus 10=28 planks if the lintel will only be restricted to window areas.