It’s taken a while, but I’ve finally got around to starting a page for our potential build. Thanks to everyone so far for the incredible information on this forum.
We had been looking for some time for something a little larger (both house and block) than our current house. We had difficulty finding the perfect established house so we figured we’d find an old house to demolish and build. We finally found and purchased an old house on 1012sqm in an established suburb in Perth. A picture of the old house and backyard!
We settled on the house in August 2013 and have been working with numerous builders to come up with something that suits our lifestyle/budget and taste. This process has taken some time due to uncertainties with the site and the significant site costs we were told to expect. In advance of signing with a builder we completed a soil and contour survey. The results weren’t good and we found that our site was classified as an moderately reactive (M) clay site with a footing detail classification of C8 with the requirement of a 900mm sand pad.
It’s safe to say that our site costs are horrendous. When confronted with these estimates, we worked with a number of builders/professionals to understand all of our different options (building a framed home, brick veneer, developing the site as a duplex etc). Our brief summary on this process was that building brick/veneer or a fully framed home in Perth is more expensive than building double brick. The increased costs are offset with reduced site costs, but when you factor in re-sale, and the Perth mentality that it “must be double brick”, the savings aren’t significant enough to warrant building in this method.
We worked with builders who claimed to be able to reduce our site costs. In practice, they either simply omitted items from the PWC (i.e. no allowances for drainage), did not get actual quotations and gave Preliminary sums only (i.e. 25K in PS, when we had actual contractor estimates at $40k), or had inferior structural guarantee’s (this was important to us due to the soil conditions).
The builder we are progressing with has experience in building in these conditions and has built a few houses on the street. I’m hoping this experience will give us a trouble free build. We have signed a PWC with Dale Alcock and we’re awaiting final contracts and pricing. We are still awaiting a revised site cost estimate due to a number of requested changes.
Our plan is below and is based upon the Aurora. We’ve downsized the rear to preserve the duplex potential of the block (Alfresco must be 1m from the boundary). We’re contemplating using some of the larder to increase the size of the kitchen. Essentially, we’d end up with a WIP but would rotate the fridge into the recess and create a wrap-around bench next to the stove top. This would hopefully create some more cupboard space for appliances etc.
We based the exterior design on the Homestead/Mandalay to tie with the traditional feel in the area.
That’s plenty for now, but I’m sure there will be more to follow.
24/06/13 - offer accepted for land and house.
18/07/13 - soil and contour surveys requested
16/08/13 - settlement completed
6/12/13 - PWC signed
5/03/14 - demo completed
28/03/14 - contracts signed
11/04/14 - pre start complete
17/10/14 - earthworks commenced
24/11/14 - slab
30/01/15 - bricklaying and termimesh