Dec 24, 2019 11:33 am
Hi all and thanks for letting me in.
We are a family of 5 - mum, dad and 3 rugrats building a large new home on the Sunshine Coast with a very well known nationwide builder.
Being that this is our first home we have built in Australia (we have built several others overseas but the playing field is totally different there) we are finding out a lot of things on the fly.
We have signed a contract a paid a 3k Pre-deposit (for site survey etc) and a 5% DP.
1/First up - we still don't have council approved plans - is it normal to pay this money before having approved plans? We have saved money for this build so are not going through a bank or lending institution.
2/ When the plans were put in for council approval (and after nearly 5 months of planning) we were told that it was too big for the block and it would need to be reduced in size. A bit surprising as the builder had all the details and the site survey was carried out long ago. But I do understand some things don't become apparent until after engineered drawings are done. Short story is we need to make variations to make the house smaller.
As such, with variations - does each and every variation need to be signed off? I have seen a friends variation order he got from his builder (not the same as mine) - and it shows each and every variation with its own cost.
With mine, the whole lot are lumped into one - and I just get a lump sum figure for the lot. all the calculations are done as to what had to be taken off and what we added but I don't get to see those calculations or the individual costs of adding or subtracting items. Its just the whole bag of variations all costed as one variation. So when I get to take something off, I have no idea how much I paid for it in the first place.
Is this normal? I know for my friends variations (he is building in another state - even the smallest of things are noted and billed individually so he can track his budget, so im confused)
3/ Now I have paid the DP - should the builder be giving me some kind of insurance note?
Is there anything else I need to look out for at this early stage?
Throughout the entire process I have not been able to know the cost of individual variations.
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