Understanding the NHF Schedule of Rates 6.1/6.3

What are schedule of rates?

A schedule of rates is a priced list of repairs, installations and other minor works. Typically the schedule will be used in a contract to standardise pricing which benefits both the supplier and the buyer:

  1. The supplier spends less time estimating prices for maintenance works.
  2. The buyer spends less time gathering quotes

The NHF Schedule of Rates is the most popular third party schedule, widely used across the UK for maintenance & repair contracts. Building companies who wish to work for housing associations, councils & universities will often find themselves using the schedule.

Why should I be interested?

  • If you need some repair work done then it could be useful to check the schedule rate to get an idea of how much you should be paying for your work. Consider also that some building companies will be offering a discount on these rates when bidding for contracts.
  • Private sector organisations interested in cost savings for building maintenance work through efficiency improvements may benefit from adopting the rates. A simple discount based tendering exercise minimises the pricing burden on potential suppliers, increasing the chances interested suppliers will submit a bid.
  • Building companies, plumbers, electricians and other tradesmen who wish to work in the public sector need to get to grips with the schedule before they submit a price, so that they know what they’re getting into.

Information contained in each rate

At its most basic level, a rate will display a code to identify the rate, a letter indicating the urgency of the job, a brief description of the works involved, a unit of measure for determining the required quantity of the rate (eg per square metre) and the rate price.

Job Urgency Codes:

The exact time allowed for by these codes depends on the supplier, but a rough guide is given below:

  • E – Emergency – typically within 1-4 hours
  • U – Urgent – typically 24 hours
  • R – Routine – typically 15-30 days
  • X- User Defined

How the price is calculated:

  • A group of surveyors employed by NHF have determined the time & materials required to complete each repair work.
  • The cost of all required materials has been provided by leading builders merchants.
  • The time required has been multiplied by the labour rates detailed in the below section.
  • The sum of the above gives the rate.

NHF Labour Rates 6.1/6.3

The standard trade rates used by NHF are below:

  • General building tradesperson – £26.26 per hour
  • Roofer & mate – £41.54 per hour
  • Electrician – £34.06 per hour
  • Gas engineer – £34.50 per hour
  • Plumber – £31.18 per hour

Please note that the above rates are now more than five years old & do not account for inflation or other rising sectoral costs.

What exactly is included in a rate?

One of the most common points of friction between buyers and suppliers when using rates is regarding what exactly is included. Below is a list of what each rate includes:

  • Any ancillary items necessary to achieve the repair even if not mentioned.
  • Clearing away all rubbish, excess materials etc including waste disposal charges
  • Access equipment up to second storey level.
  • Dustsheets, security screens, weatherproofing & any other protection required.
  • Any boarding work necessary to reach the work.
  • Taking off and refixing aerials, satellite dishes, gutters, cables and any other items located on the roof.
  • Making good.
  • Material matching.
  • Other elements depending on the type of work; please ensure you check the NHF list to find out exactly what. For example, fencing work will include for applying preservative timber coatings.

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