Jan 09, 2020 2:05 pm
My partner and I are currently waiting on a tender with McDonald Jones homes and just wondering if anyone had any experience with them?
We are taking advantage of the 45k off base price promotion and they are even including landscaping/air con/flooring among other stuff in the price because of a special.
The plan we are going for us the Monte Carlo with a triple garage/butlers pantry/extra office upgrades.
They have ballparked a quote of roughly 400k for all extra's we requested and site costs are inclusive. It's a 325 square metre build but a lot of that is open area and garage/alfresco.
Here are extras we asked for in tender:
-60mm stone bench top to kitchen
-2.7m ceiling height with coffered ceiling to living area/home theatre/entry taking it to 3m height
-master ensuite upgrade to include bathtub
-tile to ceiling in both bathrooms
-terracotta roof tiles
-900mm oven/stove top
That's roughly what we asked for in tender.
Can anyone suggest what to look out for? I know we need to ensure 100mm slab, 450mm spaced frame beams (it's a steel frame), 90mm stud thickness, and make sure it's suitable to atleast H1 slab. (That's what the soul test came at motherland though ours might differ slightly).
Other than above my next question is once we get the quote can we strip it back to structural and get bank approval for that amount and pay cash for everything we can at the end of the build? (Flooring, kitchen bench top, appliances, extra lighting) what else would we be able to pay cash on after contract signed?
Thanks in advance!! First time builders so trying to do as much research and not get this wrong like a lot of people seem to do.
I've attached rough floor plan.
Cheers in advance!
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender2
Jan 09, 2020 4:09 pm
Also just did a bit of research on houspect as a building inspector. They sound really good and are roughly $2250 for a 4 stage inspection or $2600 for a 5 stage. (5th stage being waterproofing check of wet areas) would the 5th stage be worth it or should I just get 4 stages?
It seems like a no brainer getting them to inspect it as 2.5k when spending 400k is nothing...especially after the horror stories I've read!
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender3
Jan 09, 2020 6:07 pm
I used housepect on my recent Metricon build and was happy with their service. I would recommend checking the waterproofing is done properly. On my build Metricons waterproofing contractor Dryman had 5 attempts to properly waterproof the wet area floors. Also I suggest checking your contract carefully for how MacDonald Jones Homes agrees contractually to respond to your inspection reports. It’s likely they will invoice you for the progress payments when each stage is complete, irrespective of defects identified in your inspection reports. Basically this provides them the ability to ignore your reports, avoiding correcting defects at the appropriate times before you are obliged to pay.
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender4
Jan 09, 2020 6:22 pm
@christopher_hemmy I have just checked the reviews of Mcdonald Jones Homes on the productreview website. I would be very cautious interpreting these in your research as most of the positive reviews posted there do not look genuine! There is also some quite interesting discussion about this topic in the Q&A section for MJH. Some forum members are questioning their integrity given this situation. If you have not already done so, I would suggest you contact at least 3 recent real customers and speak with them directly about their experiences with MJH before you sign the contract. No build will be perfect and it’s how the builder responds to the issues that arise that will give you some insight into their capability and ethics.
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender5
Jan 09, 2020 7:28 pm
We are currently renting a brand new MDJ home, the quality is as expected, a mid range project build.
They have still not completed all the works following the three month inspection even though we have been in for 12 months.
In regards to finance, yes the bank will just loan you the money for the base price, however, as per most contracts you will have to pay your portion up front, prior to the bank starting to pay anything. Of course there is landscaping & floor coverings etc that you can pay cash with after handover.
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender7
Jan 24, 2020 10:55 pm
We went through MjH and got our keys in late 2018.
I think you will be surprised at the final cost even though you have factored in some of your selections. There are so many things that will add to the final cost just in site work not to mention your colour/electrical selections. As far as slab thickness and structural details, MJH have a standard design that they generally run with, anything outside of that they will either refuse to do or will charge you an arm and a leg.
Re: McDonald Jones Build Tender8
Jan 29, 2020 9:27 am
We have just started construction with MJH. We are building the Saxonvale 36 and honestly could not fault them at all. I know we are in the very, very early stages of construction but they are motoring ahead and are providing us updates before we've even asked any questions. A few people in our estate have also built with them and have all been really impressed. I think a while ago they had a pretty bad rep but it seems they've had some massive internal changes because they are very, very good.
I'm not too sure on what you can 'strip out' of a build and what they are legally required to do in order for the home to be considered complete. Slab and structurally they will do what is best suited for the type of soil. Flooring and electrical of course you can do later, but benchtops and appliances I'm not sure. We did a fair bit of research (googling) with regards to electrical and found it wasn't too much of a difference if MJH did the downlights or we did it after handover. We are building a 2 storey home so had to do downstairs at a minimum with them for downlights.
Colour selection upgrades and electrical for me were an eye opener. So many things I just didn't consider - like having separate switches for the light and fan in bedrooms unless of course you pay $95 per switch to upgrade. Things like soft close cupboards, polyurethane cupboards, hidden rangehood, bin drawers etc all add up! And spoil removal....the builder will charge you a fortune! If you can arrange it with their contractor privately and it will cost you a lot less. Your slab supervisor will normally provide these details at the time they do the cut and fill(if required).
I'm not even sure if this answers your questions but I hope it's helpful
Sign in or Join to reply to this Topic
ST-HardyOur McDonald Jones Bronte BuildOur McDonald Jones Bronte Build
Hi Stephen and Jo, You have a beautiful block, I would love to one day build a beautiful big home on a block like that For now, I will settle for our standard suburban…