Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Residential -

WESTERN Aus­tralians are em­brac­ing dif­fer­ent styles of liv­ing and new con­struc­tion tech­niques, ac­cord­ing to Mya­ree­based builder Sum­mit Homes Group.

Man­ag­ing di­rec­tor David Simp­son said while dou­ble-brick con­struc­tion re­mained pop­u­lar in the new homes in­dus­try, the big­gest de­sign trend over the past 30 years was the ac­cep­tance of mod­u­lar con­struc­tion tech­niques, al­ready preva­lent in WA’s com­mer­cial sec­tor and hous­ing in­ter­state.

“We can de­liver a sec­ond-storey ex­ten­sion in lit­er­ally a mat­ter of hours,” Mr Simp­son said.

“You can go to work in the morn­ing and re­turn later that day to see a sec­ond storey as you pull into the drive­way.”

Mr Simp­son said 30 years ago, many peo­ple built a rel­a­tively small home with boxy rooms on a large block.

In 1985, the most pop­u­lar de­sign was a three-bed­room, onebath­room home with just over 104sq m of liv­ing area that was priced at about $24,000.

“The de­sign was so pop­u­lar that we were lit­er­ally build­ing en­tire streets of this one de­sign, one af­ter the other and the other,” Mr Simp­son said.

“The only thing that re­ally changed was the colour of the brick­work on the el­e­va­tion to of­fer a point of dif­fer­ence.”

To­day, Sum­mit Homes’ most pop­u­lar de­sign is a four-bed­room, two-bath­room home from $166,194 that fea­tures open-plan in­te­grated liv­ing ar­eas, a study, home theatre room, dou­ble garage and al­fresco area.

“The great Aussie dream of home own­er­ship is def­i­nitely still alive and well but peo­ple are opt­ing for mod­ern liv­ing so­lu­tions like nar­row lots, town­houses, two-storey homes, granny flats and mod­u­lar con­struc­tion,” he said.

The in­tro­duc­tion of de­sign guide­lines and De­tailed Area Plans by lo­cal coun­cils and de­vel­op­ers means homes are tai­lored to sat­isfy clients’ unique re­quire­ments, and laws.

While the de­ci­sion to build is still a big one, the dif­fer­ence is that cus­tomers now choose ma­te­ri­als, Mr Simp­son said.

Sum­mit started 37 years ago in a small Mya­ree of­fice with about 30 em­ploy­ees. To­day it op­er­ates with 400 staff work­ing un­der man­ag­ing di­rec­tor David Simp­son from a 26,000sq m head­quar­ters, which in­cludes a re­search and de­vel­op­ment fa­cil­ity. Us­ing mod­u­lar con­struc­tion, Sum­mit builds homes ready for trans­port­ing to a client’s block.

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