Apr 26, 2016 12:42 am
We went to visit a display home we had viewed floor plans of online in January in Craigieburn Vic to get a visual of our goal. Thinking we were a year away from target we never thought we would be signing land contracts and working out electrical outlets at this point! But here we are with deposits down and our Gallery appointment coming up on Friday! Excited is an understatement!
We are building the Dakota by Simonds with nook option and ensuit upgrade and will hopefully be ready to roll out as soon as the land titles (expected in May/June).
We have been counting down the days to gallery and my pinterest account has had quite a thrashing trying to work out a look that suits both hubby and my taste haha. If any Simonds customers have advice to share before we head into the unknown your first hand experience will be greatly appreciated!!
BUILD TIME LINE:
03.06.16- Developer lodged forms for registration
12.06.16- Soil test
21.06.16- Land registered
31.06.16- Finance ready to settle
04.07.16- Drawings updated to suit soil and survey
14.07.16- Engineering ordered
15.07.16- Land settled
04.08.16- Paper work complete
12.08.16- Met our Site Supervisor
18.08.16- Cut & Fill
23.08.16- Retaining wall put in (small)
24.08.16- Holes for slab/concrete prepared
25.08.16- Cement in holes (rain)
29.08.16- Storm drains and power box installed
30.08.16- Internal drains laid
06.09.16- (heavy rain delayed) Crushed rock laid out for slab
07.09.16- Slab frame erected, foam blocks and rio laid
08.09.16- SLAB COMPLETE
10.09.16- Exterior and interior wall frame begins (rain delay)
11.09.16- Frame complete completed
12.09.16- Windows and doors installed. Roof Trusses begin (rain)
13.09.16- Roof trusses complete
15.09.16- Gutters installed
19.09.16- Roof tiles begin
20.09.16- Roof tiles complete
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore3
Apr 26, 2016 8:34 am
How exciting for you. The Dakota is lovely!!!
We're not far along in our building journey but we're building the Simonds Leon. I went to our gallery appointment last Wednesday. Sounds like you're doing all the right things by having some ideas in mind.
My consultant was wonderful, she helped with the type of look I was after & had great suggestions but I had a fairly good idea of what I wanted. We were wanting to only stick with the standard range & weren't pushed into making upgrades (although I ended up making a few minimal ones).
My partner dropped into the Melbourne gallery (we're regional Victoria) a week before our appointment & had a quick walk around so we had an idea of what was available.
Gallery was so much fun, I had a ball - but that may have had more to do with the fact I didn't have my 3 year old shadow with me
Our Simonds build
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore4
Apr 26, 2016 8:43 am
Haha I can certainly relate to the three year old shadow Matalee.
We're building the Simonds Palisade and hoping to pop into the gallery on Friday after our tiles appointment. Only problem is, we'll have our little Miss 5 with us so that will limit us somewhat. Luckily we do have a general idea so I'm hoping that will help time wise
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore6
Apr 26, 2016 3:04 pm
Oh gallery is a long day, I wouldn't take miss 5 with you.
We are just doing our Beaumont appointment, not the whole gallery, hell noooooo way would we take either of them to that haha. We only have to find a suitable kitchen splashback as we've previously picked out the tiles for everywhere else. Then we'll hopefully just pop into the gallery to pick out a couple of samples for the ceaserstone and cabinets
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore7
Apr 26, 2016 10:58 pm
Best wishes on your Dakota build!
You asked for advice and I can offer this titbit. The staff tell you that when you get to contract signing that you cannot take the contract away. You can sit and look at it in the office for 3 hrs but then you need to sign. Their argument is that you have 5 days to pick anything up and let them know.
My advice is to insist on taking it away and to quote legal advice. My lawyer told me it is absolutely my legal right to do so and he recommended that we give it to him to look at before ever signing it. As it happended he was happy with the contract wording and made no changes but it gave us all peace of mind, and he didn't charge us for reviewing it (just part of the later conveyancing cost). Simonds said that was impossible but when I quoted the lawyer the manager soon agreed.
By taking it home I was able to pick up about 10 tiny things that bothered me that I was able to change when I did go in for the appointment that I am not sure I would have picked up on the day. Little things like location of a drawer unit hitting a door when it swung open and the need to add a Parliament hinge onto one of the lounge doors.
Next piece of advice is to realise since you are building way into the future like us that if your land titling is delayed that Simonds can charge $400 per month. If there is a 6 month cost that will hurt. We have taken the gamble to settle as I calculate our build price has already gone up $2,500 for the house and $2,00 for Gallery items (based on latest brochure), plus our roof tiles were on special for $4,000 less (we have to have flat tiles on our area - grr). So if we bought the same house today it would be $8,500 more than the Nov price they held for us. But it is a cost we are aware might hurt at the end so go in with your eyes open.
Next, make sure that you get every single dollar of your Simonds promotion. I am super proud that I got within $1 out of the 60K package we picked from the Transformer Bg Brands book (acutally it was $60,049, and Simonds give a $50 buffer.
Last piece of advice I was given (but couldn't follow) is to get the best facade you can afford (and that you love). You can always upgrade stone benchtops etc inside later, but the facade cannot be changed and is a feature for future sale. Sadly, we had to stick with standard as our section is tiny (14x28) and losing the 600mm or so for a front pillar made a big difference to the already-small back garden.
Best wishes, Valerie
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore9
Apr 27, 2016 2:53 am
Yep, great advice from Valerie. We built the Avalon. Actually, I think Simonds standard fittings and finishes are pretty good. If you collect looks that you like (photos from show homes, houzz, Pintrest etc) you can make a basic style work with their range and just add your own touches through furniture and soft furnishings etc. I found it helpful to go into the gallery a couple of times alone before selections. This helped me understand what their colours/starting choices were so I could do some field research/drive-bys to put a decent scheme together with their category 1 selections which were good.
Think about your lighting and PowerPoint placements.
Do your floor coverings yourself. You will get better quality for what you pay. We were quoted $20k to tile our house (porcelain). We saved $10k doing ourself after handover.
Think about upgrading ceiling heights for a more spacious, quality look. Well worth the money. Also ceiling to floor tiles in wet areas - not a huge expense if you stick to a classic, standard tile which will still look elegant and wear better in 10-15 years time, more so than half the amount of fancier tiles you may tire of.
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore10
Apr 27, 2016 10:11 am
Wow what a wealth of advice thank you all so much.
We have chosen the Portland facade with future plans to add a bay window later down the track. We considered raising the ceiling height but figured the heating and cooling costs would suffer so might not be much of a long term gain.. we may be wrong but we are happy with the 2.4 standard height especially with the large open kitchen dining living area we were concerned about the echo factor. Does anyone know if certain rooms be raised??
The ceiling to floor tiled wet areas is a great idea for looks and wear. We would like a niche for the bath and this can only happen on tiled walls.. think im sold.
We made it into the last big brands offer and took the 40k option. We will definitely be spending every penny haha thanks for the buffer tip! You played that well Valerie, we will follow suit 😉
I didnt know about the land titling delay costs, thanks a million for this info i will be asking many questions.
We havent made it into the melb gallery for a walk through. I wish we did but we would have had our 3 little ones tagging along 😅 no thanks i'll keep my sanity thanks lol thankfully my mum will be minding them all friday (what a champ!)
I cant wait to get in and start putting our ideas together, from the builds i've been watching (most of yours actually haha) we have similar taste 😊
I'm relieved to hear the consultants arent pushy.
I'll post some photos of our selections Friday night.
Thanks again! Sarah
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore11
Apr 27, 2016 11:06 am
Congrats, I love the Dakota floor plan! So much storage Does the study nook make the whole house wider? Or does it just push the garage over? If that makes sense... Haha
I think the best bit of advice I got was to take lots of pictures at your gallery appointment because it's really easy to forget what things looked like together (and also so you can post them on here for us to see!)
I can't remember how to post a link to my thread (I've done it before but stuffed if I could work out how to do it now!! ) but I've posted a few of the prices of things we got at gallery, like kitchen upgrades and extra power points and stuff, but ours will be regional prices.
I agree with Tomcat, the standard range is really quite good!
Looking forward to following your build! Our land is due to title at the same time, fingers crossed there aren't any delays!
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore12
Apr 27, 2016 11:24 am
Halcyon will do! haha i get snap happy so dont think that will be a problem.. remembering which is which might be though haha. Just checked out your prices, are your sliding doors cavity type?? I'd love to add a cav' slider to our walk in robe instead of the open door. Scared of the cost but I want to be able to hide mess if need be 😂
We are changing the first entry point to the bedrooms 3 & 4 to a study nook. It will be walled off with a built in desk we'll add after handover. The study option looks awesome but out of our price range and yep changes the garage /entry layout. Its pricey.
Oh yay fingers crossed all goes to plan for both (& all) of us 😄 exciting times ahead!!
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore13
Apr 27, 2016 11:32 am
Yes I'm a big fan of hiding clutter haha, and yes they are cavity sliders. I see what you mean with the study nook, that's clever! Did Simonds charge much extra for the change, if you don't mind me asking?
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore14
Apr 27, 2016 12:57 pm
Awesome thanks for that will definitely be adding one then. Haha yeah clutter drives me crazy, i fell in love with all the storage space with the Dakota so we can hide all our cr'...ah.. collections.
The nook was $500 with power and light point.
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore15
Apr 27, 2016 1:03 pm
That's really not bad at all considering a sliding door is about the same haha it's really very clever, it'll help keep some of the noise away from the bedrooms too.
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore16
Apr 29, 2016 10:19 pm
What a massive day!! I hope this works..
Our colour selections are:
Masia blanco 75mm x 300mm splashback (thanks for the tip halcyon!)
Moon white mapei (light grey) grout
Moose laminex cabinets
Ice snow ceasarstone benchtop
Bathroom & Ensuite
Simplicity sand floor and shower tile
Chicago bricks for niches
Rural oak benchtops
Graphite shadow line
Laminate flooring on the left (Brighton)
Cat2 Treacle colour with luxury plus underlay
Lambstongue skirting (what a name)
Chestnut brick cat2
Surfmist window frames
Monument garage door and barge capping
Dune gutter, downpipe, barge
Barramundi roof tile
Natural cement mortar
Its feeling really real now!
Re: Simonds Dakota Kilmore20
Apr 30, 2016 1:48 pm
Portland facade, with the standard horizontal cladding not the classic weatherboard.
Some other bits and pieces we changed:
The laundry is the same simplicty tile with the same cabinetry as the bathrooms and the shorter version masia blanco for over the benchtop with white grout. We extended the bench to put the washing mashine / dryer beneath and added an exhaust fan.
We had sound proof battons put between bed 3 &4, the ensuit wall and bed 4, and the tv wall/ main lounge and
In bathroom and ensuite we pushed the sink and cabinets to one side and extended the bench across to the wall with plans to add washing basket space below. Added ducted heating vents.Upgraded the shower heads- removable and height adjustable type to the main and the larger round head with removable hose to the ensuite.
Free standing bath upgrade to main bathroom
Round sink to main bath
Square sink to ensuite.
Extended the kitchen island bench with extra pot drawer, added power point to one end and added an extra 10cm overhang for a breakfast bar. Raised the tile to roof following the range hood spout. Upgraded the over to dual fan. Replaced dining window with sliding door.
Moved bed2 window to next to the wardrobe.
Upgraded the sliding door in the lounge with a 3 door double sliding door.
Added power points galore and a few extra lights (double flurescent to garage) inside and out.
Added glazed windows to main bathroom and toilet.
2 weeks until contracts
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