Because the process of real estate development, realization and renovation is complex, the Assistants to the Owner provide valuable support to the MOs (Project Owner). They offer their expertise in specific areas and/or phases of the project. The AMO can intervene from the design to the realization of the property, so that the real estate project becomes reality.
The project owner (MO) is the person or entity – private or public – for whom the project is carried out. In other words, it is the sponsor of the work. When the Owner signs a contract with a general contractor or several contractors, he retains obligations in the execution of the project. However, it often happens that the Owner is not a construction specialist. The Assistant to the Owner (AMO) is there to support him and ensure that he fulfils his obligations, such as decisions, contracts, procedures, negotiations, etc. In some cases, the Owner has professional skills in-house. But how does he manage when a complex project – because of its legal set-up, its financial stakes or its technical difficulties – is presented to him? The Owner then looks for an external specialist, able to assist him in particular fields. It also happens that the Owner simply does not have the time or resources to ensure the smooth running of the project. He will also resort to an AMO.
We often think of the AMO as support for site monitoring. But this is only one facet of the services. The AMO can intervene at a very early stage and provide support to the Owner for the set-up and development of the project. He will be in charge of studying the orientation of the project according to its potential. He will be sought out for his specific skills, for example in finance, land use planning law, technology, etc. Responding to “investor” competitions or tenders on behalf of an MO is also part of the services offered.
The MO who wishes to construct a building or a real estate complex will mandate an AMO for the entire process. Although he may be present from A to Z of the project, the AMO may also be solicited only for one stage or to deploy a particular skill that the MO lacks. One often delegates to the AMO missions such as: the setting with the public investigation, the obtaining of the authorization to build, the research of the company (or the companies) in charge of the realization, the relations with the communities or other partners, the follow-up of the quality and the costs, the respect of the deadlines, and finally the delivery of the work.
Another case in point: the MO is not from the region. It is, for example, a foreign company that wants to establish itself on our territory or change canton. In this case, he will benefit from the experience and knowledge of the market (prices, regulations, etc.) of the AMO. The latter will be able to advise and guide him judiciously.
It is important to emphasize that the AMO, as the name suggests, is an assistant. He relieves the MO by performing certain services. However, the AMO is required to pass on information to his principal, who will take decisions. These last ones will be then relayed near the companies and the representatives concerned. Attention: do not confuse AMO and delegate of the Owner! Only the delegate of the Owner (and not the AMO) has decision-making power and can commit the Owner for certain choices.
A written document – or AMO mandate – allows to define precisely the expectations of the project owner and the services to be performed. The mandate can take different forms, depending on the project, its volume, the complexity of the work, the duration of the site, etc. Standard contracts exist (KBOB, SIA 112) and can be used. However, no obligation is in force: “tailor-made” contracts are often made.
With its 12 collaborators, CI Conseils covers all the skills specific to an AMO, relying moreover on several years of experience and on an important book of references.
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