Sunday, 30 June 2013

Progress on Frames and Flooring Appointments

The constant downpour over the past 10 days meant no work for most of the days on site; however our SS found two sunny days and recruited an army of men to work on the frames. I will post frame-pictures of different rooms on another day.

The Kitchen and Pantry windows can be seen from our neighbouring lot, which is on a higher ground – warranting the instalment of privacy screens – I thought I could get away from spending more money – but there is no escape from this one.

Retaining Walls: With the heavy downpour last week, there is mounting evidence that the retaining walls in the side and rear elevations will need to go up sooner than later.

Frames standing in water puddles on mud surfaces and stacked closely together – causing me to believe whether they would encourage mould growth and decay of wood. The timber entry frame has also been soaking up in the rain…

A peripheral look at the windows and sliding doors that were delivered from Southern Star Windows do not reveal any damage to them – a pleasant surprise – although we will know the reality when the protective layers are removed and fixed on frames. When we were at Studio M for colour appointment, we noticed Wideline as the window supplier; we must have been one of the last batches to get Southern Star (anyway, I do not prefer Wideline, which we have in our rental- place).

We completed last week our tiles and flooring appointments with Di Lorenzo and Carpet Call respectively.

At Di Lorenzo, we chose tiles within the Builder’s standard range; however, upgraded the tile heights on one or two elevations in most of the wet areas, as they not only make cleaning much easier, but make the rooms appear larger and give them a sleek finish.

     Wall tiles 250 x 500 mm  DCW1212 – the tile has a pattern as well as texture - the tiles will be laid horizontally

                                Floor tiles 400 x 400 mm  DC2223 – the tile has a visible pattern

Feature tile-1  200 x 400 mm DCW1196 (Chocolaty colour) to back of shower niche in Ensuite

                    Feature tile-2  (3 rows wide) Venus Lead Glass Mosaic –
on shower recess wall and face of the bath in Ensuite, and on returns in Powder Room.

At Carpet Call, we chose from the standard range of laminate for entire ground floor (except Sitting room). As part of Metricon’s Imagine Promotion, we got laminate flooring at no additional cost to Entry, Foyer, Kitchen, Pantry and Family (whilst carpet to remainder of home); however, we upgraded to laminate flooring in Study, Dining and Under Stairs Storage areas. The laminate flooring we chose was Tropic Ash Block-2 Plank fine grained texture from Parador Classic 1050 category.

For stairs and entire first floor, we chose carpet from the standard range – not bad considering it came at no additional cost because of the Promotion. The carpet we chose was Eaton Park Bike with a 7 mm foam underlay.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

External Plumbing, Delivery of Frames and Base Stage Invoice

Visited the site a few times last week, showing our side and rear boundaries to retaining wall specialists who have now provided me with quotes. Two quotes are comparable, although more expensive than the third competitive quote which we are likely to go with. My Mrs is still pondering whether we should seek a few more quotes, but I am content with the quotes we have, especially that I have supplementary information from clients who have had their retaining wall professionally constructed and some words of wisdom from our sales consultant.

Two developments on build this week have been external plumbing (read more digging and pipes, and discovery of additional rocks) and delivery of piles of wood (frames). The Green coloured ones are the white ant resistant structural T2 wall frames. These frames were about to go up last week; but I suppose the public holiday last Monday, combined with the poor weather for a few days after must have spoiled the plans. Can’t wait to see some frame action next week.

The terrible winds we have had also knocked our Port-A-Loo and our temporary fencing, and I hope Metricon fixes it (more sturdily) next week.

I also noticed chipping in concrete where our hot water unit would be placed and location of Sitting and Portico, and I hope they would be repaired (and have flicked an email to our SS for action).

Location of Hot Water Unit - See chipping in the corner

See chipping in the corner of Sitting room

See chipping in the left-hand corner of Portico

For those reading our posts, can you provide your thoughts on how major or minor these chipping are and how critical that they be fixed? We would have Hebel panel system if that information is of any relevance.

We also received the invoice for base stage last week, which of course I flicked to our Lender only to face drama for a while (surprise surprise). We had some post-contract non-structural variations (internal upgrades) and apparently this threw the Settlements team off-guard. They had to send all our variations to their loan assessor for approval. Luckily, the assessor responded quickly on how we may proceed regarding the variations to our building contract. I kept Metricon Senior Account Receivable Officer (AA) in the loop including forwarding all the emails I received from our Lender and I must admit that Metricon has been professional and kind in managing this process so far. AA even adapted the original voice to make it more understandable to the Lender. It has been 10 days so far since Metricon emailed us the invoice and our Lender has advised that payment will be made tomorrow (Monday).

Thursday, 6 June 2013

We Have a Concrete Slab

Our SS called Tuesday evening to advice the completion of concrete pour.

Our Construction Support Coordinator emailed us today confirming the completion of base stage, with advice that I can soon expect invoice (which I received an hour later from the Head Office). 

Dropped by yesterday at the site and I did the ‘OMG…it is small thingee’ as I saw this area of bland concrete. I suppose it would look bigger once the frames are up, as claimed by many who have built houses.

External drainage and delivery of frames are scheduled next week, with frame carpenter to commence work pending weather. Let's hope all goes to plan.

Our Future Driveway will be 14.5 metres long, with a 3.3 m cross-over!

Side and rear areas where the retaining walls would need to be raised
(as seen from where our future rainwater and hotwater systems would be placed)

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Waffle Pods Complete

Went to the site to check out progress and noticed the completion of the waffle pods with reinforced mesh on the top. Met a few new people and discovered a few other things:

A newly recruited Metricon Sales Consultant who was familiarising himself based on our site plan, and is expected to commence work at Greenhills Beach Metricon Office, near Cronulla. Never heard of an M office there…would be interesting to check out any display houses there,as I am keen to see Metricon's presence in the Illawarra / Sutherland Shire area. Also had a peek through the Shire's Council Website and discovered DAs approved for private build of  Phoenix 35 and Glendale 34. We too are building the Phoenix, but Glendale is also a good design.

Met Dan, who is building also at Brooks Reach (BR)…Welcome Dan. You can post comments in the blog when you feel like it. Perhaps, ask you mates to also post their comments / share their build experiences and stories,as I would love to hear on your builds. I hope to meet you all in the BR Community Park sometime in the near future. If you are keen, check out the Homeone forum that has a ‘Building in Brooks Reach – Community Thread’, where a number of BRers have shared their stories, build progresses and experiences.