Apr 05, 2017 6:42 pm
We are working on our first home. It's a acreage with views on three sides and forest with a drop of about 2.5m on the area that the house can be built on due to planning restrictions.
We have visited display homes and spoken to friends and decided on 1 nationwide builder, 2 area builders and a local architect to progress with.
So far they have provided custom designs and quotes for free (we had a contour plan and soil/wind test) -is it normal practice to get competing designs and quotes?
We like elements of each of them but no one scores comparably on our key criteria (in no particular order)
1. Construction structure quality (based on recommendations by friends, years in trade etc)
2. Style/Design customizability
3. Quality (not necessarily quantity) of Inclusions and finishes
5. Overall cost inclusive of pad/earthworks etc
6. After contract/after build customer service
At this stage is it best to choose a builder and then work with them to get everything closer to what we want or should we continue to refine it with say 2 of them before finalizing?
The issues are that designs are copyright and so we don't want to be unethical on this.
A has a great design and layout and finish (in display home) but will only build on a pad
B is also a great design but the finish isn't as good (at display home) but will build raised block and steel frame that really increases the views and adds extra under space on half the building.
C is a simpler 2 story building with a small pad but have been recommended by friends. Increases potential outdoor areas and space for shed etc.
They are all around the same price for around the same sq metreage so no major difference in these important criteria.
I'd love to get this communities feedback on how they went about this stage of their home builds? for ex get a draftee and finalize the basic plan and then get just build quotes rather than design and build quotes? work with the one we like the most to finalize? add weights to the list so that we see what's critical to us and what's just nice to have etc.
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes2
Apr 05, 2017 7:57 pm
Firstly congratulations on putting at number 1 what most people don't consider pretty much at all, now put display homes aside as they are most often misleading, instead and way more important speak to others who are building with each potential builder, this will give you much more realistic experiences as to what they will deliver compared to a pull out all stops display home that will be hand picked.
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes3
Apr 05, 2017 9:46 pm
Yes that's exactly why we didn't even consider the company that had the nicest layout and cheapest display home that the others are basing our custom designoff, as when we checked another house they had done it was pretty ordinary.
The key questions are is it ok to keep getting companies to work on stuff till we find the one that best fits our needs or do we need to sign an initial agreement or be willing to pay for this work now?
Getting competing house design plans and quotes4
Apr 05, 2017 11:37 pm
We are just going through this exact process and we based our selection on the builder. I wanted someone I could talk to and bounce ideas off, someone that allows a little creativity and will let me shop around for tiles ect and use allowances.
We have a really good relationship with the builder and if there is something I really want and he doesn't do it, then we discuss and he gives me a damn good reason why not, example I was tempted to have a tiled roof and he said no way has to be colour bond on a acreage home. After many conversations he was right but it was nice to be able to discuss it rather than being told no straight up.
In regards to your plans, if you can draw a mix of the two designs you love and take it to the builder your most happy with he will have a drafter on hand to help out.
We are building a acreage home this time and I've been lucky enough to design our home, but because our builder has a drafter I have been able to call him for advise, when he is drafting and something isn't quite right he gives me a call or calls my builder and they discuss and then call me to give me my options. If you engage your builder now you will be able to work with both the drafter and builder to achieve what your after.
With our builder our drafting fees get put into our contract so their are no bills for drafting, slight down side is the budget is hard to keep a hold of due to the massive amount of choice.
Best of luck with your project, I hope you start a build thread once you settle on a builder
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes5
Apr 06, 2017 12:53 am
Good luck to all. I will keep my message quite simple and straight forward.
Compare Apples with Apples.
Not Apples with Pears.
"Building an Eden Brae Waldorf 50 in North Kellyville"
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes6
Apr 16, 2017 5:31 pm
So we have got 2 quotes from 2 homebuilders (1 national and 1 regional) both for about the same cost ~$1550 for 2 story design of about 220sq ground level and 80sq on 2nd floor.
Is this pricing average or expensive?
These are both concrete/block only on flat pad on class M soil with lots of rock.
A local builder suggested (and I really like) the idea of having part of the building on raised pad (level difference of about 1m) (approx 17m x 7m) and the other half on steel frame. The 2nd floor is just on the raised pad (back side). Here there will be a level difference of about 2.2m which will allow for some good storage space under the steel frame.
I am just getting a design done for this to get it quoted...if the pricing is about the same -what's disadvantages of not getting concrete/block house on flat pad?
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes7
Apr 16, 2017 5:50 pm
How far down is the rock? The only rock that needs removing is the rock thats going to be impeding on your plumbing, stormwater trench lines etc. If the rock is more than 600mm down you should be okay. Even if you need to get it blasted, expect to pay about 5k.
Re: Getting competing house design plans and quotes8
Apr 16, 2017 5:56 pm
Thanks for the advice on costings. Rocks just on the surface pretty much ...see https://drive.google.com/open?id=0BxjBq ... zJSS2U0OEE
The point of the question was less about cost of excavating the rock and more about building half on raised pad and half on steel frame as against cut-n-fil.
The other big advantage is the house sits a bit higher and less likely to get blocked by any new construction.
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