Sunday, 26 February 2012

Week 14 - Summary

Monday 20/2 - Sunday 26/2:

Good weather for the week kept things cranking over, and we got to lockup, as scheduled, on Friday.

The brickies finished off the outside on Thursday, and some activity on the inside, with the lockup carpenter rectifying inspection items and fitting off the front door handle; and the plasterers getting the sheets up too!

It's been an incredible journey, watching the paper plans materialise into what is basically now our house! With paint, cabinetry and fixtures to be done, it shouldn't be too long till we see all of our long considered selections come to life!

In other news, we find ourselves in a situation which we knew was possible, but never wanted to face.  Our rental is sold, and we have to move.  Over the past 4 months, we have been holding Saturday morning opens for the house we are renting. With the market being soft, and the vendor wanting an unrealistic price, it dragged on a little, but it did prolong our stay in the house.  Our lease ends on March 18, and we did raise our situation with the agent / landlord early in the week to continue on a month by month basis until mid June, or sign a 3 month lease.  This was agreed to in principle, and the sales agent advised he would do his best to get an extended settlement if the property sold.  Well, after 4 months of trying to sell, the owner accepted an offer, but on strict 70 day settlement terms. The new owners need to move in at settlement, which is 26 April - not negotiable.  This puts us in a very difficult situation, so we have decided to put in our obligatory 28 day notice to vacate, and move out by 22 March (no more money for you Mr. Landlord), and try and find a place to rent for 3 to 4 months - a challenging task.  But we do have a few contacts in the real estate world who we are calling upon, and they think we do have a couple of options.  Packing and moving is never fun, and having to do it in these circumstances is a big deviation from plan... but, eyes on the prize... we'll get through it.

Some positive news we would like to share... Leanne is 14 weeks pregnant and our first baby is due on the 24th of August!! We're both very excited, as are our families!! 

Thursday 23/2:

Brickwork complete.

House bricked, front door handle done.

Close up of facade. Projection to be rendered in Time Capsule.

Alfresco. All visible walls to be rendered (Time Capsule). 2 x Bi-folds to be fitted.

Sunday 26/2:

Walls plastered.


Alfresco looking at Lounge / Laundry Door / Foyer Window

Side Yard looking at Alfresco / Kitchen / BR Hallway / Lounge

From BR2, down hallway to BR3, BR4, Toilet & Bathroom

Main Living area


Master WIR

From Foyer looking at Lounge raked ceiling
Plan for next week:

Plaster finished (gaps, joins, screw holes, straightening)
Brick Washing
Architraves & Skirting

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Week 13 - Summary

Monday 13/2 - Sunday 19/2:

Solid week of progress, with the brickies kicking off bright and early on Monday.  By the end of the week, they're probably 70% complete, and we're absolutely rapt with how good they look and well they're laid!

The sparkies came through on Tuesday and roughed in all the power and lights, and the insulation went in on Wednesday night.  Pity about the storm on Thursday evening, but it looks like we got away without any damaged batts.  Everything seems to have gone in to plan, aside from the light switch for the ensuite toilet, which was placed outside the room, and directly behind where we intend to place our heated towel rails.  I'm going to walk through the house this evening and check it off to plan.

Our SS met us back on-site on Tuesday to triple-check the placement of the front door handle, which gave us a chance to chat with the sparkies and bribe them with a slab of beers to run some extra power leads for additional things we need done after handover (projector & motorised drape in home theatre, heated towel rails in bathroom & ensuite).  Much easier to have the power cabling there now, as this causes the most pain for the sparkies later.  Also gave one to our SS for being a legend :)

The wall mixers got fitted off on Thursday, and PD's inspectors came through as well, marking a bunch of things that need fixing.

Monday 13/2:

Bricking on the South & East sides of the house.

Day 1 bricking on South side of house

Day 1 bricking on East side of house

Tuesday 14/2:

More bricking and electrical rough in.

South wall bricks completed 

South / East corner

More work on the East wall

Electrical in the Home Theatre 

Electrical in the Kitchen

Wednesday 15/2:

Garage bricked & insulation batts fitted.

Garage wall

Facade started

Insulation batts through Alfresco into Lounge
Thursday 16/2:

Bricking on North side and Wall mixers.

Bricking off WIR

Mixer for Ensuite shower
Friday 17/2:

Plaster delivered, more bricking!

East wall bricking - nearly complete

North WIR wall complete, with some of the HT wall started

Facade slowly coming together

Plan for next week:

Finish Bricking
Lockup (24 Feb)
Inspection rectification (BSS & NHI)

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Week 12 - Summary

Monday 6/2 - Sunday 12/2:

A fantastic start to the week that set the scene for the rest of it! After nearly a month of little progress, this week made up for it in droves, with our bricks turning up earlier than expected! Received a phone call from our SS at 9am Monday to advise that our bricks were being delivered that day... and that the brickies were getting started a few days later!  That triggers a range of trades to get the house past lockup and to fixing asap.

With the bricks turning up on Monday, the sand came on Tuesday and the pallets were split on Wednesday, ready for a Friday kick off.  In addition to this, the showerbases were fitted & waterproofed, and the sisalation wrap that got wrecked on the south side after our stormy weather last Sunday was fixed.

We had an on-site meeting with our SS on Thursday morning to see how things were tracking and what the next steps were.  We also went through anything that needed attention.  I must say, our SS is very pragmatic, and keen to make sure everything is done properly.  The plan over the next few weeks is for the bricks to be complete by 24/2, with door delivery and a visit by the fixing carpenter on Friday 10/2.  The sparkies are in on Tuesday 14/2 to rough in and the batts go in on Thursday 16/2.

On Friday, our huuuge front door was installed, along with the other external doors and the cavity sliding doors.  The proper foyer window was also fitted, the bath hob was made, and the walls were straightened, which also resulted in some of the wrecked noggins being replaced. The new ducted heating unit went in too.  The brick layers were on-site ready to start, but must have been called off as no bricks actually got laid.  In some other good news, the Ducted Vacuum points all got relocated to the exact spots we specified in our plans!! Good job PD!!

Got a call on Friday afternoon from our BC to give us a construction update. Nothing new aside from the fact that they will be claiming lockup on 24/2, even though the bi-folds won't be installed (due to potential damage and theft), which doesn't really bother us. Fixing about 2 weeks later.  In her experience, she reckons to prepare for a handover in May...

Monday 6/2:

Not quite tired of saying it just yet, but... Bricks!!


Ensuite showerbase (1500 x 900)

Main bathroom showerbase

Tuesday 7/2:

Sand delivered, wrap fixed.

Wrecked wrap, after storm

Fixed wrap, and sand ready for brickwork 

Friday 10/2:

Doors, Ducted Vacuum, Foyer Window, Ducted Heating unit

Love it!

Foyer window fitted, Door from ensuite to yard

Ready to brick...!

Ducted Heating Unit

Facade - slowly coming together

Plan for next week:

Electrical rough in

Thursday, 9 February 2012


Well... our bricks turned up on Monday!! Great start to the week :)  A couple of iPhone pics to share.  Laying to scheduled to start on Friday!

Taken without direct sunlight
Taken in direct sunlight

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Week 11 - Summary

Monday 30/1 - Sunday 5/2:

Yet another slow week...!  Had a quick chat with our SS on Monday morning to get the latest on our bricks, and to book an on-site meeting.  According to him, the bricks are still scheduled for 9/2, but the office is struggling to book in the order for some reason.  SS reckons Austral are well aware that he wants them, so he's not too worried - if we miss this batch because someone can't do their job, heaven help them. Site meeting also booked in for 9/2 @ 8:30am.

No solid confirmation yet on when the Ducted Vac system will be re-done, and we also got advised that the heating unit we have (the standard Brivis 2PW26) does not support zone control (for which we paid $534 in the contract), and we need to shell out another $644 for the MX30i which does. Not happy, but cannot be bothered arguing the point.

We also got a price for 3-coat paint, which is $1950.  Most evidence seems to point to the fact that it is a much better finish, so we'll probably go ahead with that too...

On a slightly more positive note, we organised some more furniture this week.  A new 3 seater and arm-less 2 seater from King Furniture's Phoenix range (Package reduced from >$7,000 to $3,000) for the Lounge room.  We also bought lounges and tables from their new Outdoor range for the Alfresco. The staff at the Richmond store were very helpful, and we're excited about having their furniture in our house!

We really only have to organise light fittings for the 3 bedrooms (we've already got one for the Master), another coffee table for the Lounge and bedside tables for our room. Everything else has either been bought or selected for purchase a little later.

So what actually got done this week?  The ducted heating and cooling ducts went in to the roof space, and the evaporative unit got fitted too.  Happy to report that the ducts have ended up pretty much bang on where the plans had them, and the cooling unit was fitted neatly and plumb - we have seen plenty that don't look like they're fitted properly.  The incorrectly sized foyer window that was delivered way back in early December was collected and a replacement provided, which now needs to be fitted.

Monday 30/1:

Heating and Cooling ductwork started.

Ducts in Lounge with raked ceiling

Wednesday 1/2:

Ductwork completed, cooling unit fitted and correct foyer window delivered.

Return Air duct, and proper window for fitting

Cooling Unit

Plan for next week:

Brick delivery
Fix the Ducted Vac system?

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Week 10 - Summary

Monday 23/1 - Sunday 29/1:

Not a lot to report this week, given it was a short week with Australia Day on Thursday. The roofing was finished off on Monday as expected, and the Ducted Vacuum system went in as well. Unfortunately, all the points are in the wrong locations! Obviously we raised this with our SS who was surprised the DV guys even came through. He was aware of our preferred locations (we gave him a marked up floorplan when we first met him), and says he'll sort it out.  Let our BC know too, just so there's no excuses later. The shower drains were also completed on Wednesday.

Spoke with Austral and the bricks are still scheduled for 9/2, and we popped into the Richmond display centre on Friday to have another look (just in case!)... still happy with them and the latest stock report has them deliverable on 9/2 still. Let's hope it stays that way!!

The houses around us are absolutely flying up (Carlisle, Urban Edge & PD Lifestyle / Access). Some that started after we did are past lockup and nearly ready to paint... Bring on some progress next week!!

Monday 23/1:

Roof complete, ducted vacuum system fitted.

DV point in the hallway in front of the Master BR.

Wednesday 25/1:

Shower drains fitted.

Plan for next week:

Ducted Heating & Cooling
More Electrical