Hi

Please have a look at the following letter:

SUBJECT: Increase Floor Space At Kitchen

I refer to our conversation of December 15, 2004 regarding the subject.

I suggest an additional space of 165 square feet is required to accommodate your need for a kitchen island top (3’ x 5’) and an additional built-up kitchen cabinet. The most practical size would be to increase the depth from 9’ to 15’ and the length from 14’ to 20’.

The original estimate submitted by the contractor in November was based on $ 110 per square foot; therefore, the estimate of the cost of construction needs to be increased by $18,150 (165 sqf x $ 110), plus the 10 percent inflation rate on the estimate project. Thus, this additional space (including 15 percent contingency) will increase the construction cost budget to $ 850,000.

Please let me know if you wish to proceed. I will begin changes on the drawing after receiving your written approval.

- End

I appreciate your help.

Regards

Ed
Hi Ed,

Good to see you again. Let's have a look at your letter.
SUBJECT: Increase Floor Space At Kitchen

I refer to our conversation of December 15, 2004 regarding the subject.

I suggest an additional space of 165 square feet is required to accommodate your need for a kitchen island top (3’ x 5’) and an additional built-up kitchen cabinet. The most practical size would be to increase the depth from 9’ to 15’ and the length from 14’ to 20’.

The original estimate submitted by the contractor in November was based on $ 110 per square foot; therefore, the estimate of the cost of construction needs to be increased by $18,150 (165 sqf x $ 110), plus the 10 percent inflation rate on the estimate project. Thus, this additional space (including 15 percent contingency) will increase the construction cost budget to $850,000.

Please let me know if you wish to proceed. I will begin changes on the drawing after receiving your written approval.


SUBJECT: Increase Floor Space At Kitchen

[Further to our conversation of December 15, 2004 regarding your remodeling(?), I am providing additional information.] Or [To confirm our conversation of December 15, 2004, I understood the facts as outlined in this letter.]

I suggest an additional space of 165 square feet is required to accommodate your need for a kitchen island top (3’ x 5’) and an additional built-up [built-up or built-in?] kitchen cabinet. The most practical size would be to increase the depth from 9’ to 15’ and the length from 14’ to 20’. [3 X 5 + 6 X 6 OR 3 X 5 + 15 * 20, neither seems to add 165?]

The original estimate submitted by the contractor in November was based on $ 110 per square foot; therefore, the [cost] estimate needs to be increased by $18,150 (165 sq ft x $ 110), plus the 10 percent inflation rate on the estimated project. Thus, this additional space (including 15 percent contingency) will increase the construction cost budget to $850,000 (eight hundred fifty thousand dollars).

Please let me know if you wish to proceed. I will begin changes on the drawing after receiving your written approval.

Ed, I always write important numbers using both English and numbers. That way, I am less likely to error because I have had to think about it extra carefully. And there is less opportunity for a typo. Now I have to mess up twice. Also, when stuff get photocopied several times, some things look a little blurry. Having the English written values helps to preserve the original values.

Good letter.

MountainHiker
Hi MH

Thank you for your time and help.

How silly I was. It should be written as ‘built-in’ instead of ‘built-up’. As for the computation, (3’X5’) should be ignored in the calculation. [(20’x15’)-(14’-9’), this should add up to 165.]

Regards

Ed
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Hi MH

First of all, I would like to wish you and your colleagues at EnglishForward.com a merry merry X'mas and a happy New Year.

Second of all, I need your help again. Please take a look at the following letter:
On December 21, while conducting a tour of the job site, we observed the following unsafe conditions and practices:

1 Several workers were seen without wearing a hardhat [or hardhats?].
2 Permissible load capacity signs were not posted on material hoist cars.
3 Platforms were not fully planked.
4 Unsafe stacking of stored materials at the construction site.
5 Uncapped protruding metal rebars.

[for items 1,2&3, I believe the situation hasn't been improved since. Does a past perfect sentence make sense here?]

Please keep in mind that maintaining safety precautions at job site shall always be your responsibility (AIA 201, §3.3.1). Our action in notifying you shall not be construed as an undertaking of obligation to supervise or determine the manner in which you carried out the work.

I urge you to press forward with a tougher safety measure without any further delay.


Thank you in advance.

Best regards

Ed
Hi,

Thank you for the Holiday Wishes and same to you.



On December 21, while conducting a tour of the job site, we observed the following unsafe conditions and practices:

1 Several workers were not wearing hardhats.
2 Permissible load capacity signs were not posted on ["all" or "the"] material hoist cars.
3 Platforms were not fully planked.
4 Stored materials were unsafely stacked at the construction site.
5 There were protruding metal rebars that were uncapped.

[ed73, I don't recall the different tenses. I am just a native speaker. I looked up "past perfect" and I don't think past perfect is applicable. You use that when one action occured before another action. Or you use it in reported speech to indicate a past event. I think you have a lot of flexibility. Let's look at 1:

Several workers did not have hard hats.
Several worked had no hard hats.
Several workers were not wearing hard hats.

All are acceptable. There might be other combinations too that are satisfactory.]

Please keep in mind that maintaining safety precautions at job site shall always be your responsibility (AIA 201, §3.3.1). [Our action in notifying you shall not be construed as an undertaking of obligation to supervise or determine the manner in which you carried out the work.--very wordy, not sure what you are trying to say here. I likely would just delete it.]

I urge you to press forward with a tougher safety measure without any further delay. [I don't like the sentence, but if I did, I would write....

I urge you to press forward with tougher safety measures without any further delay.

If it were me writing....

Safety is vitally important, and I expect you do everything reasonable to ensure a safe worksite.

I use "everything reaonable" because "everything" or "everything possible" is too onerous. If you asked me to do "everything possible" to ensure a safe worksite, I would simply fire everyone and stop the work. Now it is perfectly safe. Not much gets done, but it safe. "Everything reasonable" means just that.

Or you could rephrase it slightly....

Safety is vitally important, and I expect you employ best safety and business practices to ensure a safe worksite.

Now, if something goes wrong, you can point to your letter and say, "Look, I told him to use best practices, and clearly he failed to do so."

Hope that helps.

MountainHiker
Thanks MH. Your suggestion is invaluable.
Our action in notifying you shall not be construed as an undertaking of obligation to supervise or determine the manner in which you carried out the work.


Sometimes, I am worry that sending out such notices – especially regarding worksite safety –may mistakenly construed by certain parties, particularly the client, that I have undertook ‘voluntarily’ the supervision duty that is specifically excluded by the contract.[Potential liability exposure]

Perhaps, there are better ways to structure the sentence?

Regards,

Ed
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Hi Ed,

Without seeing the contract (please don't show it) and without knowing the cultural and business norms, it is hard to say.

But if I were to guess....

This letter is not part of any supervisory action as referenced in our contract. Rather, I am bringing to your attention safety deficiencies that must be corrected according to the safety provisions as outlined at (AIA 201, §3.3.1).

[And then I would go on to describe the deficiencies. In our culture, safety is of paramount importance and it doesn't matter who finds an unsafe work condition. You'd better fix it or be responsible for any consequences.]

MountainHiker
Dear MH

I do not want to put you to further stress particularly during this holiday season, but it would be enourmously helpful if you could look at the following letter:
I wish to thank you for taking your time off to visit my office recently. I am glad that you’ve placed my firm in the priority list to undertake the design of a resort at Anna Maria Island, Florida.

I understood the facts that this proposal was transferred to you from the original project developer, together with the schematic design - the previous developer has since terminated the services of the original architect. You also informed me that this proposal has obtained the zoning approval from the relevant authority and as such, any modification to the original design should be avoided.

I welcome this opportunity. However, as a prelude to my acceptance of this commission, I would like you to assure me in writing that the original architect has grant you a non-exclusive license to use his drawings, along with your indemnification of me against all claims or damages arising from the use of the drawings.

I am certain you share my concern on the issue of copyright infringement. It is vitally important that we clarify such issue at the very outset. Please let me know if you wish to proceed so that I can draft out the agreement.


You suggestion is appreciated.

Regards

Ed
I wish to thank you for visiting my office recently. [You could also say, "Thank you for visiting my office on December 2, 2004." When dealing with formal business stuff, I like to provide dates so that if something should fall apart, I have a complete record with lots of cross references.] I am glad that you have [don't use contractions (you've) in formal business stuff] placed my firm on your priority list for the design of a resort at Anna Maria Island, Florida.

I understand that the previous developer has since terminated the services of the original architect and that this proposal, including the schematic design, was transferred to you from the original project developer. You also informed me that this proposal has obtained the zoning approval from the relevant authority and as such, any modification to the original design should be avoided.

I welcome this opportunity. Before I begin working on your project, however, I require the following two items:

1) A written statement from you to me stating that the original architect has granted you a non-exclusive license to use his drawings, and

2) A written statement providing me with your indemnification against all claims or damages arising from the use of prior architect's drawings.

[When dealing with important stuff, I like to itemize the things that need to be done. It makes it very clear. And if I need to discuss with the client about any item, she can simply say, "On your letter of December 21, I have trouble with your second request." Now we know exactly which request that is, and we can discuss.]

I am certain you share my concern on the issue of copyright infringement. It is vitally important that we clarify this issue at the very outset. Please confirm your acceptance to these terms. Once I have received your confirmation I will begin to draft our agreement.
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