One of the most successful aspects of Chilli Pepper Design’s business model is our ability to effectively match our client’s interior design needs as accurately as possible. Part of the corporate mandate is to have the right people with the right know-how by our side. 

This is exactly why we are excited to introduce our brand new addition, Nikheel Bhola, to the Chilli Pepper Design Family. Nikheel is a fully qualified Quantity Surveyor and driven professional who will ensure that we stay at the top of our game and consistently improve upon modern home interior spaces.

Why is a Quantity Surveyor essential?

Don’t be surprised if you’ve read the term “Quantity Surveyor” and found yourself unsure of what that means or what someone with that title does. This is because most people are extremely unfamiliar with civil engineering as a principle.

Specifically, a quantity surveyor’s (QS for short) job encompasses a large selection of professional disciplines that include structural, geotechnical, environmental, irrigation, construction management, and transportation engineering. 

In short, not only does a QS ensure that contractual relationships between parties are managed properly, but also makes sure that the financial position of contemporary interior design construction projects is accurately reported and controlled effectively.

How our new QS will benefit your next job

  • We can quickly advise on the potential of your interior design project and can work out exactly what is affordable. We call this “feasibility”.
  • We can present a comprehensive and periodic report on the costs of every element of the work done on your home interior to date. We call this “valuations”. 
  • We can accurately organise the components of each interior design project and award these to trusted associates we know can handle the job best at the best deal. We call these our “subcontractors”.
  • Handle all legal and contractual concerns so you don’t have to.
  • Make sure that the costs of the interior design project do not exceed the initial budget.
  • Handle all subcontractor and staff payments at jobs end, and settle the final account.
  • We can constantly, consistently, and effectively monitor all home interior projects as our QS acts as a financial advisor.


Ahead, we engage with Nikheel about his experience as a quantity surveyor, his accomplishments to date, and what he envisions for Chilli Pepper Design’s future endeavours.

Q: What is the role of a QS at Chilli Pepper Designs and in the construction industry at large?

Nikheel: A Quantity Surveyor has to be versatile. You can find us doing just about anything that the day/week requires, from cost estimations and value engineering, through to the account management of contractors with constant control of the project budget. 

My main objective at CPD would be to ensure that we always remain competitively priced, satisfying our client’s desires with a product and service in a market where quality, service, and a happy client is what matters.

Q: Describe your daily routine as a QS, what is a “day in the life” like?

Nikheel: My daily routine would involve making sure that CPD is always on top of our game in terms of project planning, cost control, site orders, site responsibilities, and work execution. Never forgetting CPD’s pride in quality assurance!

Q: You’ve just joined Chilli Pepper Designs, what do you enjoy most about your new job?

Nikheel: We are a family and our office maintains a happy and positive attitude. We are very busy but ever willing to help each other and take pride in the product that we deliver.

Q: To date, what are some of the most impressive projects you’ve been involved in?

Nikheel: I am proud to have been the QS on many successfully completed projects such as luxury residences in Midstream, Copperleaf, and Steyn City having had the client QS responsibility of managing more than R200 million worth of contract works in a single project.

Q: Do you prefer being office-based or onsite, and why?

Nikheel: I enjoy that my profession allows me a healthy combination of both. This keeps the job interesting because of the pressures that I face in the office that challenge me to find better solutions for us all on the CPD team while on-site. I enjoy determining and implementing a suitable management method that the specific site requires, witnessing the benefits of our management and the outcome of our work.

Q: What are some of the best procurement routes that you are aware of?

Nikheel: In South Africa, it would be worth exploring the benefits of design-based procurement methods. This method employs a single entity to do the design as well as construction of a desired project. 

It differs from traditional procurement methods most commonly used in the country as it involves one contractor who will be responsible for the design and execution of the works compared to the flow of information from a design consultant to the construction team. 

In my opinion, this will reduce the risk of delays in construction caused by errors in design (from a lack of physical or hands-on experience), delays caused by information flow and confusion of a builder’s interpretation of design – A builder will use a ‘lessons learnt’ approach or just their historical experience in designing the right product that he/she will have to deliver. 

This will ultimately avoid finger-pointing and the shifting of blame which results in variations to costs and programme delays which is a common problem in South African projects.

Q: How would you go about determining the initial timescale for a construction project?

Nikheel: The first thing you would normally do is to break your project up into its phases. Organising the flow of work in its respective order. Other factors to consider will be the speed of information flow (the design and details of a project are not always complete when a project commences – which would be ideal), the ease of access and mobility in and around the site and the lead times of your specified materials. 

Also consider the size of the project teams involved with reasonable productivity programmes planned (with incentives and/or penalties in place to encourage good practice) making sure to factor in time delays by natural or special causes. Another useful exercise in determining a programme is to conduct a site survey and identify unique problem areas and their potential delays.

Q: What do you envision for CPD in the near future?

Nikheel: At CPD, we strive for perfection. We aim at a market that has no room for anything less than a perfect installation. We have strong relationships with our suppliers who are always willing to go the extra mile for CPD. We have also built strong relationships with our clients over the years who come back to us when it comes to any of their kitchen or cabinetry needs due to the standard of our previous work and because trust that was built to last. 

My vision for CPD in the near future is to assist in bringing CPD to a position where we are recognized not just in Gauteng, but nationwide as a quality designer and installer of kitchens and cabinetry.

Q: What are the major KPIs/pillars a QS needs to focus on?

Nikheel: Cost estimates, value engineering and consistent cost control while ensuring that the client remains happy with the money that he/she has managed to save and even happier with the product that is delivered. Negotiating and finding the right product at the best price is a successful day in the life of a QS.

Q: Tell us a little about you, why you chose this field, and what you envision for the future.

Nikheel: I am a driven and positive individual who strives for perfection in the workplace. I crunch numbers as the saying goes, but I find passion in taking systems and making them simpler to use while being more informative. I find myself facing new challenges daily by the ever-changing and demanding building industry in South Africa. 

Through these challenges, I have learnt the methods of overcoming problems that can be avoided in the planning/design stage of a project. I believe that I will be an integral part of CPD, bringing the company to new levels, while expanding the company’s possibilities of reaching out to a much larger market in executive residential developments in the years to come.

On the weekends, I love to kick back, relax and spend time with the family and enjoy being outdoors on a different adventure!

Contact Chilli Pepper Designs

To view, some of our amazing completed kitchen design projects, follow this link:

Don’t overlook lighting when designing a kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom – it can make or break the success of your design!

If you need professional home design advice, contact us at


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