Choosing your home design
Visiting a display centre can be a bittersweet experience. While daydreaming about your ideal home can be fun, the process of settling on the right design for you can feel a little intimidating. State sales manager for Eden Brae Homes
(pictured) says you’re more likely to end up with the house of your dreams if you follow these steps.
Off the block
The first thing a builder will want to know is if you already have a block. This will influence the kind of house you can build, which will help you make a shortlist, along with your wishlist of bedrooms, living areas or a preference for single or double storey. Bring any information you have about your block with you when you visit.
“Look at the display homes and identify the floorplans that you would like to see yourself living in,” Bill says.
When you’ve found a design you like, talk to the sales consultant about what’s included in the base price. Display homes always include optional extras, such as expensive tapware, tiles or blinds which may stretch your budget.
“Eden Brae has an Essentials package price which will give you an idea of how much it will cost to move in which covers things like floorcoverings, driveways and some site costs,” Bill says.
Made to measure
Next, work out whether your preferred design will fit on your block. You may need to make some necessary variations to make it fit, which will add to the cost.
“You may like to include other variations such as changing the proportions of rooms or taking space from another room to create a smaller space off it,” Bill says. “There might also be council rules about floor-to-space ratios, setbacks and landscaping that your house will need to comply with.
“We suggest that clients choose a design that is closest to their requirements because if you do customise a design considerably then the cost will also increase considerably.”
Once you’ve settled on a design, including as much detail about things such as tapware, tiles and appliances, as well as the changes you want to make, the builder can offer you a presales quote.
“That will summarise all the changes that the client requires,” Bill says. “But one of the unknown costs is the site costs.”
The next step is a site inspection for a survey and soil test.
“Site costs will vary with every block,” says Bill. “A visit to the site will be required to do a survey and a soil test to determine the type of slab that’s most appropriate.”
Bill says it’s not unusual for people to approach two or three builders to do a site inspection. Expect to pay between $750 to $1500 to have this done.
The final quote
With the site inspection complete, there’s now enough information for a full quote.
“The client will receive a fixed tender with the variations they have requested and a compliance test to make sure the house fits their vision and their site costs,” Bill says.
“Whether it’s a knockdown/rebuild or a greenfield site, the process is much the same.
“The quote contains all the information, any sketches, the siting, the plan they chose, the purchase of the house on that land.”
While clients may want some time to think it over, Bill says you shouldn’t wait too long.
“You can’t take a tender away for six months and expect it to be the same price when they get back, so you need to follow through to the next step,” he says.
On the dotted line
When you’re happy with the plans and the price, the last thing to do now is to sign the contract.
“The clients sign the contract and put down a five per cent deposit which allows us to get started,” says Bill.
Now the building approval process begins.
If you fall in love with a particular part of the house, like the kitchen, ask what is and isn’t included in the price.
Wear comfortable shoes and take a drink when you visit a display centre — you may want to take your time looking around.
The Kew 27 by Eden Brae Homes has proved a popular choice with buyers.