Sunday, 25 May 2014

The circus begins

The circus has begun with the presentation of our first tender. Call us crazy but we are getting a total of five tenders all up. The theory behind this is we will get a broad range of prices and can then decide based on a number of factors such as inclusions etc.

The good thing is we do not have our heart set on any one design/builder so will not be swayed from that perspective.

Our first presentation was with Metricon who originally we thought may be the one. Their service from the minute we walked into the sales room has been excellent if not the best out of the five. The only difference with this option is it is the only one requiring DA approval rather than our preferred CDC. The design is the Laguna 40MF. Due to the DA requirements our original design has changed quite dramatically with close to 2m being chopped off the house length which has resulted in smaller bedrooms.

Next we had Provincial Homes. I must say these people are on the ball and have produced their tender in their standard seven days. No surprises and so far but one thing that does stand out is the number of provisional allowances they have rather than fixed prices.

After this on one full day we had Clarendon and Wisdom Homes. Both to the same degree of detail as Metricon and again no real surprises. We ruled Clarendon out straight away as they wanted to use 900 mm drop edge beams and have the back yard set down from the house. While Wisdom insured us that we could do it without the drop edge beams and have the level yard we are after.

The final tender is from Kurmond Homes but unfortunately they have ruled themselves out purely on being too slow and making a few mistakes (flipping the house and sitting in the wrong position. To date we have still not received their tender costings and can't wait any longer.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

The beginning of a dream or the end of a marriage?

After twenty long years of paying a mortgage we finally paid off our house and were debt free. So what better way to celebrate than to upgrade. Mad I know but now is the right time if we are every going to do it.

We started looking at renovating our current property and add a second level as we love our location but wanted a few extra larger rooms etc. After receiving four quotes we were astounded by the costs to renovate. We then went down the part of moving but staying in the same area. This was not looking good as the real estate market was going through the roof and we would still need to spend quite a large sum of money to update any of the places we looked at.

This lead us to building from scratch. Something I have always wanted to do since my early days as an architectural draftsperson. My wife took a little bit of convincing but after spending many sleepless nights crunching the number we were going to be far better off financially buying a block of land and building our dream home than renovating or moving.

Our current house is on a battle-axe block which we love but it is not the perfect block for a knock-down-rebuild. So the task of searching for a new block started.

After a few moths we were able to secure a block only 1km from where we currently live and it too is a battle-axe block which we are very happy about. It has a northerly aspect which will give us plenty of sun all year round.

So this leads me to the title of this post " the beginning of a dream or the end of a marriage?" Which will it be? Hopefully the dream as I am lucky in that my wife and I have the same taste and always are able to find a solution that we both like.

So now the fun begins!