Simon Ashworth, IHD Architectural Services

Position: Owner

Company: IHD Architectural Services

Type of Work: Architectural Design Service

Location: South Hampshire and New Forest

Products Used:

  • PlansXpress

Planning to Perfection

Having spent 30 years working in the construction sector, Simon Ashworth has gained an in depth knowledge of the industry.

More recently, however, he switched from site-based work to provide an Architectural Design Service for new homes, extensions and conversions at his company IHD Architectural Services Ltd.

Working within the South Hampshire and New Forest areas, Simon and his wife have now formed an enviable reputation over the last three years from their Hythe-based HQ where they work on initial concept and architectural designs through to approval for planning permission and building regulations.

With business picking up, the future is now looking good for Simon who has had to move to new offices to accommodate the rise in enquiries.

One reason for Simon’s success is, he says, through the use software developed by HBXL, the building software specialist.

Originally, Simon purchased HBXL’s EstimatorXpress to help him prepare quotes and estimates for customers. Prior to this he used to outsource his bill of quantities but found it too unreliable and inaccurate. But having quickly mastered the award-winning software, he was soon providing totally accurate quotes in record time.

It wasn’t long after that Simon then looked at HBXL’s PlansXpress as he wanted to provide plans and drawings alongside the estimates.

As Simon knows his way around the HBXL software format and is up-to-date with current construction methods and regulations, it didn’t take long for him to fully understand PlansXpress. Simon is now kept busy providing full planning services including plans and drawings as well as construction details for those looking at extensions, conversions and new build projects.

Simon said: “The beauty of PlansXpress is the ease at which it allows the user to produce architect quality drawings and plans.

“It means that from scratch I can survey and complete a full set of drawings for a three-bedroom semi-detached house in fewer than 10 hours. In the past, this would have taken considerably longer but the software has changed all that.

“It is also more accurate and means nothing is missed. This efficiency means we can get through more work which is good for business.”

First launched in 2007, PlansXpress quickly took the imagination of builders and developers wanting to create their own drawings rather than spending money outsourcing the service.

It means general builders can quickly and easily draw their own building plans and elevations without the need for any training or employing the services of an architect – saving them thousands in fees.

Perfect for planning applications and building regulations, PlansXpress is compatible with the very latest technologies and building techniques. It allows users to produce architect quality plans, 3D models and photo-realistic rendering quickly and easily.

Users can also print architect quality, working drawings in plan format as well as producing automatically generated elevations and 3D visuals.

In addition by importing the plans from PlansXpress into HBXL’s leading estimating software EstimatorXpress, means the entire plan and design can be automatically priced and scheduled at the click of a button!

Simon added: “I love the way we can tailor the software to suit our needs which adds to the professional service we provide.

“We also get a very good response from clients who are impressed by the speed in which we get back to them.

“The ability to be prompt is great for recommendations and is where a lot of our new business comes from. We also get a fair bit of repeat business from building contractors, which shows we must be doing something right. I couldn’t recommend PlansXpress highly enough and I’d also like to add that the technical support from HBXL is second to none.”

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