1. What is Dressler & Partner’s unique selling proposition?
Dressler & Partner has been operating as a German architecture and building firm in Mallorca since 1993. Our company’s fundamental business principles are consistent German construction methods, expert craftsmanship, a reliable and trustworthy approach and unbeatable all-round service.
Dressler & Partner places a high value on staffing all “critical functions” in the consulting, planning, project and construction management stages with in-house specialists. Our multilingual expert team includes architects, civil engineers, master craftsmen, interior designers, and sales and construction partners who work to German standards.
Dressler & Partner’s high-quality German construction method is characterised by a rigorous consideration of building physics requirements and static calculations and ensures that your home will withstand the humidity and sea climate on Mallorca for years to come.
2. What services and in-house brands does Dressler & Partner include?
We offer you a systematically structured range of services, such as property search, architecture, construction, refurbishment/conversion, construction management, interior design, professional house support, and real estate investment. Our company’s purpose is to be by your side from the initial idea through completion and beyond.
Dressler & Partner´s range of services also includes the procurement of building plots and pre-designed house variants with shorter construction times.
3. What prerequisites should I be clear about before embarking on a construction project?
Prospective buyers who come to us to own a home in Mallorca are typically still seeking a plot of land or are in the decision-making phase to purchase the one they have chosen.
The most crucial consideration for any property is its location. Mallorca, being an island, has a limited surface area, which explains why seafront properties are scarce and in great demand and why their value rises year after year.
• What are your demands for the location or the surrounding infrastructure? Is the proximity of your future home to the sea, the city, or the airport crucial to you?
• How do you intend to use the property (holiday home or principal residence)?
• Do you have any specific architectural wishes?
• When would you like to move in?
• What is the most you can spend? (costs of real estate, construction, and ancillary services, as well as taxes)
As a result, you should be precise about the requirements you have for your new Mallorca domicile. Which aspects are non-negotiable for you, and where can you make a concession? We assist you in working out the advantages and disadvantages and critically analyse the property you have chosen in light of your requirements and the legal aspects.
4. What are the initial procedures when I come to Dressler & Partner?
4.1. Demand analysis (basic evaluation)
First, we do a demand analysis with you, in which we specify all the critical variables, such as:
• Location: rural or urban
• Region of the island/infrastructure nearby
• Information on building authority requirements
• Size of the building project/building volume
• Planning of space and room requirements for your building project (use of space and surface area etc.)
• Preferred move-in date
The demand analysis is completely free of charge and provides an insight that allows for an in-depth assessment of your needs and puts them into a practical framework. We carry it out in close conjunction with you so that it may serve as the foundation for preliminary planning.
4.2. Plot inspection
Selecting the proper location is the most challenging aspect of finding a plot of land in Mallorca, according to our experience. Before our property specialists can help you pick and see potential plots of land, it must be clear from the start which budget, including taxes and property, construction and ancillary costs, should not be exceeded.
We consider not only your preferences from the demand analysis but also local legislation and restrictions while evaluating a suitable plot of land. Once you’ve decided on one, our architects will check the legal requirements and possible building restrictions.
4.3. Preliminary planning and design
The next step is signing a preliminary design planning contract for which you will be billed. After that, the general conditions of the building site are received under building legislation from the local municipality, a planning concept is drawn up, and initial cost estimates are made. These cost estimates encompass all services required for the completion of your building project while keeping your available budget in mind at all times.
The planning contract specifies the preliminary design of your building project, establishes the essential concepts, and develops dimensioned floor plans and exterior and 3D views. This planning contract, however, is not yet a construction application!
We then present you with the preliminary planning, which considers both your specifications and the legal framework constraints. Together we discuss all the details of the cost estimates so that we can provide you with a serious fixed price offer.
You next decide whether you want to sign a work and labour contract with us or if you only want design planning (mere architectural service).
The contract for work and labour sets out the general terms and conditions of the construction project between you, as the client, and Dressler & Partner as the construction company, and has the considerable advantage of guaranteeing fixed costs for all essential construction services. If you opt for the simple architectural service as part of your licence application, the cost estimate will need to be recalculated at the time of licensing. The new cost estimate will be based on updated material and industry prices.
5. What is a contract for work and labour?
As per building laws and regulations, the contract for work and labour defines the conditions for the exchange of services between two contracting parties (client and construction company). The contract for work and labour differs from other contracts, such as the sales contract or the one for supply of services, in that the result of the service rendered explicitly becomes the subject matter of the contract and not the performance of the work or work process, i.e. the work activity during building.
The contract for work and labour includes the following points:
• Exact work description
• Completion date
• Fixed price
• Warranty rights
• Liability conditions
• Payment agreement
• Right to cancel
6. What procedures take place before the actual construction project can begin?
It can take 9 to 18 months and possibly more before a building project can get underway in Mallorca. The length of time it takes to gain planning authorisation varies by municipality. Based on your property’s location, additional authorities such as the Directorate General of Water Resources may or may not be involved in the approval process.
Proper preparation of the construction project paves the way for success!
Following the signature of the contract for work and labour, our architectural team prepares the design planning (in Spanish: Proyecto Básico) in collaboration with you, based on the previously made preliminary design. In this phase, all the necessary plans and documents are compiled from the existing ones and submitted to the responsible building authority. This part of the process typically lasts 6 to 10 weeks. During this period, our team of architects is in permanent contact with the building authority of the municipality to include any agreements or changes made by the building authority in the design planning as soon as possible.
In the next phase, approx. 3-6 months after submitting the building application, our team of architects draws up the execution/work planning (in Spanish: Proyecto de Ejecucción). Unlike in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the construction plan must be submitted to the building authority in Spain. It contains crucial details of your building project, such as materials, construction systems, installations, and equipment. This document also includes the safety standards, meaning: escape routes in the event of a fire, the location of the nearest hospital, etc.
Once the building permit has been received, our team of architects submits it, with the work planning, to the Architects’ Association for approval. After approximately one week, all the paperwork can be returned to the municipality. From this point on, we must wait at least four weeks before notifying the building authority of the start of construction. After that, we can finally break ground for your building project.
7. On average, how long does a construction project take?
A construction project typically takes another 12 to 18 months to complete. The shell building phase (earthworks, foundation laying, masonry, and roof trusses) takes four to six months. Interior finishing and building service installation take six to eight months on average.
The building is examined in the final phase by an architect from the municipality concerned. If he verifies that the project has been completed in line with the execution/work plan provided, he will issue the corresponding final completion certificate (in Spanish: Final de Obra).
This building inspection is a prerequisite for obtaining the Certificate of Occupancy. (in Spanish: Cédula de Habitabilidad). Without this certificate, you cannot connect to the municipal network or infrastructure (water, electricity, gas, sewerage, telephone, etc.).
You may move into your new Mallorca home after you have received the Certificate of Occupancy.
Please note that these times are simply estimates and may vary significantly from project to project.
8. What makes Dressler & Partner’s German building method unique?
The typical Mallorcan construction method for housing is characterised by a concrete or steel skeleton and hollow chamber ceilings. The disadvantages of this construction method are twofold. Firstly, the concrete or steel skeleton only has a load transfer at specific points, and secondly, hollow chamber ceilings have poor sound insulation and a lower static load capacity.
The Dressler & Partner team mainly carries out load-bearing wall constructions. The advantage stems from full-surface load transfer. Another advantage of this construction method is related to building physics (monolithic frame construction). The brickwork consists of aerated concrete blocks (Ytong) or thermo-clay bricks (Poroton). Both regulate the indoor climate. The permeable monolithic and solid brickwork is coated with a mould-resistant lime-cement plaster. The horizontal moisture barrier beneath the entire brickwork tackles one of the most severe problems in Mallorcan home construction: rising damp from the ground.
Reliable waterproofing is vital to protect terraces and balconies from moisture. Bituminous waterproofing is a tried-and-true technique that meets or exceeds DIN standards and regulations.
Dressler & Partner applies high-quality liquid plastics to the connections of the door and window elements.
On the outside, reinforced concrete beams and window and door lintels are insulated. This design shields the transitions between brick and concrete portions, ensuring equal temperature transmission through the wall. As a result, condensation and mould formation is prevented.
The foundation slabs are made of solid reinforced concrete as per German construction quality and the concrete is poured exclusively on site. Our solid ceilings meet the DIN 4109 sound insulation requirement. With four tensioning directions, fewer supports are needed, resulting in greater spatial flexibility.
The timber roof truss is manufactured exclusively by German carpenters and is always shipped from Germany. An exterior 120 mm rigid thermal insulation provides maximum heat and cold protection. A distinctive feature is the construction of single-pitched and gable roofs with exposed rafters. The techniques we use are tried and tested. For instance, we place a thin layer of concrete over the insulation. This gives the roof structure more mass and strength to resist heat. The Mallorcan roof tiles (also known as “monks” and “nuns”) give the house a true Mallorcan feel. Our flat roofs are built and tested following the most recent German construction contract procedures (in German: VOB). This building approach ensures a comfortable living environment in the summer and the winter.
9. What kind of home technologies are included in my Dressler & Partner project?
With a distributed or centralised ventilation system, suitable air-conditioning technology and underfloor heating, thermal comfort and protection against moisture are guaranteed. Air source heat pumps are responsible for air conditioning, underfloor heating and hot water production.
Aerothermal heat pumps are eco-friendly, high-efficiency air to air and air to water heat pumps for keeping your power costs low. Especially when it comes to supplying hot water, we attach great importance to it being quickly available. In addition, we install soundproof drainage pipes, which is uncommon in Mallorca.
Needless to say that your Dressler & Partner house will also include smart home automation systems, sound systems, security systems, and photovoltaic and solar installations, should you so wish. Our in-house engineers will gladly advise you and work with you to design a custom solution.
10. How does the sampling of the materials used in the construction of the shell and the interior take place?
The outfitting and furnishing of your Mallorca home is an essential part of your construction project. During the sampling process, together with you, we will discuss with you in detail all products and materials that will be used on your property. Thus, with our responsible project manager, you will go through the sampling process in three stages:
• A sampling of the building shell
Ideally, a sampling of the different materials for the building shell should be carried out during the work planning phase. The masonry materials (e.g. Ytong or Termoarcilla), the shape and style of the staircase, and the dimensions of the windows and doors are other significant issues to consider.
• A sampling of windows and embedded building technology
Before we begin the project, we will show you a sample of the windows (type and glazing of windows, darkening elements). We’ll also look at the shutters and the various building services to be installed in your home in the following months. The ventilation system, underfloor heating, sanitary and electrical installations are all examples of building services (with domotics if desired).
• A sampling of the interior decoration items
Finally, we do a sampling of all of the interior decoration items. We can help you choose alternative designs, products, and materials for floor and wall coverings, bathroom fixtures, lighting, interior doors, and even outlets and light switches. Last but not least, flush-to-wall interior doors, skirting boards, sockets and light switches give Dressler & Partner homes their hallmark of visually high-quality finishes.