Aug 05, 2015 1:15 am
Todays date is 18 September 2014
I am starting to write my review as of today because I know I will forget by the time our house is built and I would like to share the highs and lows of building through Smart Homes for living.
We signed up end of July just before the price rise was going to happen for the Wisdom floor plan.
Our land does not title until end oct November (at this point looks more likely to be end Nov)
We held off for a 1 week to have our plans drawn up (from memory they get sent to Malaysia) which takes a few weeks.
We were told that the plans we had drawn up by our sales rep would cost $240k (that included all our structual changes, floor coverings, reverse cycle aircon stone bench tops even a spa bath added etc provisional sums of site works though) so will be interesting as we were not informed that the "price can change" after the proper drawings have been drawn up. We will be meeting up with our sales rep in the next couple days and will find out what our new price is, fingers crossed its not more.
Today 21 sept. Great news! Our sales rep was spot on with his pricing so very happy about that.
There was a small amount added to the price list which shouldnt have but our sales rep picked up on it and informed the company that they need to take it off our price list. We do have to sign that price contract though as it costs money to get a new contract printed so therefore they will enter it into the smart homes system to remove it off the cost (which we will keep our eye on)
We also recieved more exciting news our prestart is this thursday 25th Sept (that happened quick).
Although we found out some bad news that our block wont probably title until end Dec early Jan. Which I will keep you posted so that you can see how long the build process takes. (Please keep in mind that smart homes has nothing to do with our land).
25th Sept Prestart hmmm ok all I can say is Smart Homes really does make everything standard so seems to feel like everything becomes an upgrade. If you want to feel confident in your colour selections it is a must to go to Crosbys the tile supplier (crosbys give you samples prestart doesnt) and laminate before going to prestart as I felt under pressure to choose something quickly. Today at prestart we were very disappointed to find out that our price list of everything had a minor but significant change to it (yes unfortunately we signed the contract for the price list) to the original but stupid thing of us was we seemed to skip the end of this very sentence "essa stone benchtops to kitchen laundry and bathroom (scullery not included)" well that wasnt on the orginal price list and we asked for essa stone benchtops through out why the would we go laminate top to a bench that is right beside a bench that has stone top. Anyways here is why we are so mad. We were told they could change it to essa stone if we reduced the bench in our scullery by 100mm making the scullery bench only 500mm and our kitchen bench next to it 600mm or otherwise we would need to pay $800. Very mad hope our sales rep will fix this issue as this has caused us to feel that smart homes may not be the right choice especially after noticing how badly the bath was tiled in there show room and even the overhead cupboards with the window in it looked quite cheap feeling as though most their products are cheap, the brand technika seems to be very cheap as there is no good reviews on it.
3 Oct 2014 We are sooo grateful to our sales rep as he fixed the issue with the scullery bench at no extra cost (reason they tried to charge us was that their wasnt enough stone). Really appreciate how helpful our sales rep has been there has been numerous things our sales rep has helped us to save money on. He has also had alot of patience with us and dealing with our nearly 2 year old having had a nappy accident in his display home and then when coming out to our house her throwing her dinner at him and he still was calm and laughed it off. So Thank you to our sales rep Dre* you have been wonderful.
29 Oct 14
We recieved our final plans on 10 oct 14 we have thoroughly gone over our plans now. When we recieved the final plans it had on the letter final plans must be returned within 48hours. Its been 3 weeks nearly so this will be interesting to see what happens if they will still correct our changes without charging us. Down side is we are not sure we want to sign off on these final plans until they are actually corrected as the letter notes "smart homes has the right to decline any variation requests after this date and will impose $500 administration fee on each variation raised. So that makes us not want to sign incase one of our changes we want they do incorrectly then we dont have a leg to stand on because we have signed the documents.
12th Nov 14
Our Addenda came back and phew no extra costs inregards to sending it back later then 48 hours. We have $1000 worth of extra costs but that was less then I expected for all our extras we added again.
I was slightly annoyed though as we found out one of our walls isnt the same as the display home wall. Our wall in the activity room is a 13c low wall. Which is slightly different to the display home the display home had the low wall cut out like it were a window but ours has no cut out its just a low wall. Fingers crossed it looks ok final product as its to late to make a change to it. So Heads up you will be told the floor plan is exactly the same but you wont be told any unusual walls in a display home are likely to not be like that at all for example there was a wall walking into our master bedroom which we didnt end up with on our floor plan luckily we didnt want that wall anyway, there was also a window cut out to look from kitchen into activity room on the display home which wasnt on our floor plan so cost us $300 to put the space in. The display home also had a roof height a bit higher then one roof and a panel of windows on the theatre room yet ours didnt have that elevation that we ended up having to pay $3000 more to make it look the same except that included a late variation charge.
Getting so close to the final plan Im so excited fingers crossed it runs smoothly from here.
I must say our pre start coordinator has been fantastic in regards to answering every question I have asked.
I didnt write the date we completed our plans now but they are complete everything is pretty much ready to go just need the the titles for our land and then for the surveyor to be able to go to our site.
16th January 2015
Finally our land has titled. Now our land is booked to settle for the 9th Feb. Once that has happend I will be able to say just how long it took for Smart Homes to get on site.
9th Feb 2015
Our land has now titled.
9th Feb 15
Today our sales rep informed me they still had not been out to survey the block but that scoop (realestate agent) told them that it would be ready to survey as of the 18th Dec our sales rep had said but they have not been able to survey because the fencing is still up and therefore they cant go in. So I instantly contacted scoop and they said "your builder doesnt know what they are on about they have been able to survey the block since the 18th Dec as the gates are open until 5pm" So I informed our sales rep and they then went out and did the survey on our land on the 11th Feb but my question is when smart homes was informed that they could do the survey and went out to do it but couldnt because of "the fencing being up" why did they not contact scoop and get onto it right away we would now be 2 months ahead of the whole process if they had of done that (18th Dec to 9th of Feb is a long time for smart homes to just not find out why they couldnt do the surveying when they were informed that they could)
11 Feb 2015
Surveyors went out today.
18th Feb 2015
Hi Morgan, spoke to admin and they have received back the survey and site report. Your job is with drafting now and they are completing the drawings and home placement etc.
20 Feb 15
We have received documents of changes due to surveying our land and having a slope in it ect the document is "Authority for Variations to Contract" these changes come to a total of $1788.00
9 March 2015
We are working our way through the approval stages, we are currently waiting for the Structural Engineers Certificate to be received (1-2 weeks).
Once we have received this we can apply for the Certificate of Design Compliance (1 week to complete) followed by your Building Permit (2 weeks)
Your file will then move into the Scheduling department and you can expect to receive a Call from your Client Liaison Officer – your point of contact during Construction, within 2 weeks from there. She will run through a date for Earthworks starting and slab is usually one week from there J.
17 March 15
Recieved this email.
Now that the Survey has been completed we can commence the approval process.
We will be ordering your 6 Star approval (approx. 1 week), Engineering approval (approx. 2 weeks), CDC (approx. 1 week) and Building Permit (approx. 2 weeks). It usually takes around 6-8 weeks to obtain all of the above approvals and move into scheduling and construction
I wrote back basically said thank you for update but I do hope it is less then 6-8weeks as we were told it would take 2 months from date of surveying for our slab to go down and it got surveyed in feb. Moments later our prestart coordinator sends me another email.
Good news is I’ve just spoken with our approvals department – we have already received back the 6 Star Approval & Engineering Approval which is great!
We’re now waiting on the Certificate of Design Compliance before we can apply for the Shire Approved Building License.
23rd March 15
I think the Certificate of Design Compliance has also now been done. Fingers crossed that our slab is only 2 weeks away from being laid.
27 March 15
Ok so I am feeling as though I am having to do a fair bit of chasing up lately as Smart Homes seems to just sit and wait but Im sick of waiting since we have been out of our house for 8 months now waiting all because of building. Now today its another issue apparently Smart Homes cannot apply for the building permit because Landgate hasnt sent the updated documents to the shire mapping. So I called Landgate and they informed me that everything has been done on there end that the shire has asked for on the 4th of Feb. Landgate said for me to find out exactly what documents the shire wants but see this is exactly the stuff I shouldnt need to do Smart Homes should be chasing this all up.
30 March 15
Our prestart co ordinator emailed me confirming that they have sent the application into our shire for our building permit. Which takes about 10 working days.
13 April 2015
I emailed our prestart co ordinator today asking if we have recieved our building permit yet and she replied saying no as it has only been 7 working days due to the public holidays but yay!!!! Moments later she emailed me back saying they have just recieved our building permit!!! Yippie we are finally on our way to getting a house hehe so excited!
15 April 15
Our sales rep is a fantastic guy really nice he called me today and informed me that there has been a price rise as we have gone over our lock in period by 2 months he informed me that the price rise was going to be $2500 but he told them to not charge us anymore then they need to and to give us the best price they can so he got them down by $1000 which was really nice of him so now it is $1500 we owe for the price rise.
So far we have been hit with changes and price rise coming to a complete total of $3288 to be paid prior to completion of our house.
16 April 15
Recieved email today saying congrats and that we are now in scheduling stage and should be contacted by a client liasion officer within the next 2 weeks.
1 May 15
I contacted our client Liasion officer for the first time today who informed me that earth works is finally booked in for friday 8th may 15.
6th May 15
11th May 15
13th May 15
Yay finally have our SLAB LAYED.
So far client Liasion officer has not contacted me once to inform me of what stage we are at. She told me she would contact us when slab was layed but has not.
28th May 15
Drain installation complete and clean of slab has been done.
30th May 15
Bricks have been delivered
4th June 15
Door Frames and shed has arrived.
5th June 15
Client Liasion officer informed me that site load is nearly complete. Not very happy though as she said "shortly a bricklaying team will be assigned" Why have they not already assigned a bricklaying team already!
11th June 2015
Our bricklayers started today!!!
18th June 15
Carport is nearly complete and 1 wall. When we did our floor plans we asked for our carport to be hard up against the fence which they did not do so now we have a big gap that isnt big enough for us to fit through smart homes explanation was that the gutter hung over that far.
3rd July 15
Completion of brickwork has happened.
Brickies have missed the bulk head in our scullery as per plan. and our feature wall has 3 chipped bricks which we have asked to be replaced.
We have a slight bow in the outter wall at back of house questioned if it would have any structural affect but was informed that it wouldnt our site supervisor was happy for it to be rectified but we decided to leave it. Other then that the bricklayers have done a super fantastic job all the neighbours houses brickwork by other companies hasnt been near as good as ours.
Not so happy with our activity room wall as we asked for it to be same as display home and isnt as we expected to be.
So I reported that to our client liaison officer who thus far wanted proof of that but I unfortunately dont have proof. So I responded with this email. And am now waiting on a response.
By reference if you mean do we have that in writting that we wanted the activity wall to be exactly the same, no we dont because it wasnt explained to us that, that wall would be different, besides that it would have no window in the kitchen side unless we paid for that so we did but we assumed the other wall was the same as this was not pointed out to us that it wouldnt be yes its our second time building but thats one thing we didnt know was a low wall as we've never built a 13c wall so therefore we assumed it was the same as that in the display home. These things need to be pointed out when you ask for your house to be the exact same as the display home. That just looks crap everyone of our friends and family that we have shown the activity room to since we seen it yesterday think it looks crap to which falls back on smart homes as to why their designer would design something that looks so stupid.
We have said no to fixing the wonky wall so would be nice if the activity room wall could be bricked atleast to the height of that in the display home. So far things have gone pretty well but that is something that I really think needs to be corrected.
Other then that any other issue we have had has been rectified.
5 months now since our block titled and so far we have only just completed brick stage.
7 July 15
Yay!!! Really happy that May our client liasion officer was able to help us to fix the wall in the activity room. The wall will now be bricked to the height of that in the display home (20c wall) but without the pillars as the pillars would be classified as a structural change which would mean we need to apply for a engineering certificate again. The variation is $250 includes GST so Im very happy about that as was worried it would cost alot more to be done due to the normal $500 variation fee after you signed off on your plans.
10 July 15
Decided we like the low 13c wall asked for it to stay that way they said "sure thats fine but we will still charge you $250 to keep the same height since we have already raised the variation".
17th July 2015
Roof beams have started being put on.
20th July 2015
Were informed that apparently there is a short supply of our roof tiles as they are in high demand so not sure how long this may set us back.
24th July 2015
Our bulkheads that were missed have been now put in.
28th July 2015
I contacted our client liasion officer who informed me that there wont be a supply of our roof tiles for the next 2-6weeks. Im super mad why were these ordered when our loans were approved for the house.
30th July 2015
Received an email from client liasion officer saying they cant stress enough that they can fix our feature wall but again the mortar may not match as its from a different batch. Again how annoying the brickies should have done it correctly in the first place so I have sent a msg basically saying if they cant match it they can pull the whole wall down again and do it correctly.
31st July 2015
Electricians have done the wiring throughout the house. Now still waiting on roof tiles.
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