Saturday, January 30, 2010

$10k extra and Colorbond weirdness

The builders came back with the new cost for having to raise the house 600mm this week.  It looks like they have reduced the site cost by the exhorbatant cost for the tree and then added $20k, therefore our sites are now $10k over the original quote.  At least we won't get flooded, our house will be on stumps and we will have a better aspect.  This has caused a few other problems though.

We have to put extra steps from the garage into the house.   Our alfresco will now be over 1m off the ground, hopefully we can use the spoil from the water tank to fix this up, and our front porch may be a little high too.  We will deal with these issues once the house is partially complete to see what would look best.


Another funny thing on Friday was the builder said that they had forgotten to include the cost of the colorbond in our price.  I looked through our documents and our signed specification and our signed plans include colorbond roofing.  I also double checked our contract documents and could find no loophole that the builder could use to charge us more.  I sent an email explaining this asking for return receipt, however I have not received anything yet.  I will send a snail mail and fax copy of this and all other docs I have sent to ensure that these sort of issues are properly covered.

Underground Water Tank Goes In.

When I knew that the demolition was almost complete I phoned the plumber whom had supplied a quote to install a 10,000L underground water tank for us.  He said, I'll get it sorted later next week.  Now I had been hearing this sort of thing from our builder constantly and had thought that he was joking, however as per the photos below, we now have a 10,000L concrete underground tank installed.  Whoohoo progress is really there.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

600mm Higher

Got an email from the builders on Friday. Apparently council has come back with the fact that our house will need to be 600mm higher (current level is 300mm below 100 year flood level and you need 300mm extra clearance). There are some possible pros and cons to this although all of them are highly dependent on costs:
  • higher aspect to the house, ie. better street presence.
  • possibility of using stumps rather than slab giving me a chance of making a cellar and putting gas ducted heating under the house rather than blowing down from the roof.
  • most likely more expensive, however it may not be once the builder cuts the cost of the fictitious tree.
  • delays in building times etc. due to new plans.
  • more likely to have creaking floors etc. 
I got a ball park quote of over $15k to go for stumps, however I don't know what previously quoted costs can be deducted if we go for this option.

Supposedly we will get a detailed cost on Monday.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Demolition Done

Those guys are amazing.  They are so skilled at pulling a house down.  I will have to see if I can upload some video, but here are some photos.

The excavator arrived on Tuesday morning and the last photo was taken on Thursday at about midday.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

2 and half months later and DEMO has begun...

I can't believe that the last post was on contract signing day almost three months ago.  Unfortunately not too much has happened in that time except for the excitement of DEMOLITION.

First it was asbestos removal.  I was happy with the thoroughness of the contractor, every area that could have had asbestos had holes dug into it to check for asbestos.  There were gouges in the tiles in the bathroom, the kitchen and near the fire place.

Unfortunately we got a call from one of our lovely neighbours and it appears that erither coincidentally or accidentally her bin went missing the same day the asbestos was removed.  I think this has all been sorted, however I think she may have had to order a new bin from the council to replace hers.

Following asbestos removal was Christmas break for the demo company and the builders, hence the big delay with not too much progress.

As a Christmas present though we thought we had better see if anything else had happened so on Christmas Eve we saw the following:

The floor boards had been ripped up ready for removal.

Today was the first day that the demo company came back after christmas so we thought that we had better go past to see what has happened:

The roof and the floorboards are now all gone.  Supposedly the excavator will arrive next week.

The builders don't start up until next week, and once they're back they need to ensure that the council's flood levels are OK, do another soil test and re-assess the site costs.