Sunday, December 7, 2008

Bricks on the way

Very excited to see the bricks half done on Thursday night, had a better look this weekend. I think they look great, happy with the brick selection (PGH Sandstock Blamoral). Hoping the mortar will change colour once its fully dry, would prefer a whiter look (Mortar - raked off-white).

No missing bricks so far...that's a good sign...

This took one day to do, I think there were only three quick is that.

Can't wait to see the house Monday with the scaffolding set-up

close-up of corner side
corner side of the house
garage side
back of house

Saturday, November 29, 2008

nothing to report

A tad disappointed when I went to the block this morning, nothings been done. The off-white mortar/cement were delivered and that was it. Hoping the weather will improve over the weekend, surely they'll start the bricks next week...

Friday, November 28, 2008

no news

I haven't seen the block all week the car was getting fixed...the anticipation is killing me. I can't wait to see if they've started on the bricks...we had great weather all week except today. DH received a call today from our new CSR, just to touch base and see if everything is ok; this is a first for us and we were pleasantly suprised by the call. Things have vastly improved in this department.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

WIndow Frames Done

The window frames must have been done on Thursday or early Friday as it was the only time it didn't rain all week; I went past there this afternoon and they were in. We chose Pearl White for all the windows and sliding door and Woodland Grey for the bi fold doors to the alfresco area.
I'm hoping the woodland grey will look better ones everything is done....I wonder when the glass is put in for the bi fold doors??? The Africana Slumped glass will be put in the front sidelights & doors...not sure if this is a good look either???

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Bricks have arrived

No news this week, the bricks arrived last week but no progress on the house and the weather was fine all week (so EB can't use that excuse). I think the palette of bricks we received looks good so far, I was worried we would get a dark palette but they look great. The bricks are PGH Sandstock and the colour is Balmoral. The mortar will be raked and off-white in colour; can't wait to see how this looks - gorgeous I hope.

Choosing the bricks was soooo hard, numerous weekends were spent looking at houses to see what the bricks looked like. It was hard to visualise what it would look like just by looking at a wall of bricks, I needed to see a whole house.

Not sure why the window frames are taking so long....we had such a great start with the slab & the frame. The gas has been installed and the plumbing is almost complete.

Started looking at fences this weekend, I think we'll opt for an aluminum slat fence with bricks or concrete piers - all pending on cost of course. Below is photo of the type we'd like - it's open but private at the same time???if that makes sense.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Frames done in 3 days

Came to check the block today to see if the frames had come and to our suprise the frames were up and almost complete. The ground floor was done in day one, second floor completed in day two and this is day this rate we'll be moving in by Easter??? can't wait to see the bricks now; so I guess the window frames and roof will be next. I asked how come it was so quick and apparently there are six men working on site...the house looks quite big now with the frames up.

front - garage on right

back - rumpus side

side - garage side

back - facing alfresco area

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Stage 1: Slab Foundation

We went to see the block this morning after going to the Best Breast Breakfast Benefit and found this!!!! We thought that it we would see some piers, pipes but not the foundations ALL DONE how quick is that. This is a great start, let's hope it stays on this course. This is looking at the block with the garage on the right and water tank.

This is a view from the back with the Alfresco cut out in the middle.
The drainage for the outside taps still to be done.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

No More Changes.

The final plans have been done with all the changes incorporated ie new kitchen, electrical etc. We signed two / three weeks ago now we wait for the bank, this should get finalised this week and off we go. Another milestone, another journey. Not sure when the start date is, I think we missed the last one. Hoping we start construction early Oct.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Bathroom Selection

Almost everything is finalised now just waiting on the electrical, I thought I'd post our bathroom selection so bored of waiting to finalise all the PVC's...

We've chosen the Fowler Seido inset basins with 20mm CaesarStone vanity bench tops in 'Ice Snow' and the vanity cupboards in Laminex 'White' with flint finish...thought about doing a dark colour like above but since we weren't upgrading to poly I didn't think it would look as great.

Have upgraded the shower screens to frameless ones
Have upgraded the tiles to 1.2m height to all bathrooms
Also picked large tiles for the bathroom 600*300 so these are getting laid vertically

Have not upgraded the taps & shower heads...will change these later

The powder room will have different tiles to the rest of the bathrooms as it's downstairs and the floor tiles are the same throughout the whole ground floor including the powder the floor tiles will be 'Rex Concreate' in Mud, the wall tiles will just be plain white tiles and the splashback will be the same as the kitchen splashback 'Casa Mood Neutra Silver Lux' hopefully this will work inspiration for the white tiles in the powder room (below)...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

House no more

Demolition finished on Friday, the block looks so much bigger now without the house. Looking forward to start the building process.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Still waiting on "estimating"

Boy am I sick of hearing that!!!! we signed the contract almost 4 months ago and we are still no closer to getting things finalised. I am so tired of EB's poor excuse that they are waiting on 'estimating' to provide them with the answers...if they're not giving you an answer then DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT... Why do we have to get pissed off before they do anything?? What the hell do the customer service people do???

The last changes we asked for was to get the bottom two stairs painted how can that take 5 weeks to get a quote????

I've had enough and we haven't started building yet...

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Paint Selections

I've resolved my colour problems. It seems like the whole house is going to be white...The windows will be pearl white, the external & internal doors will be crisp white & the whole house will be pearl white....the eaves are frosted ice & the bi-fold doors are woodland grey. I've also changed the garage doors to dune instead of paperbark. I'm much happier with these colours than the original beige I chose earlier; and I'm much happier I did it myself.

The vanities will be caesarstone ice snow with white cupboards. The kitchen will also have caesarstone ice snow with crisp white cupboards.

I loved Taubmans new 'White on White' brochure. The Bristol guys at Bella Vista were a great help.

Looking forward to add some colour to the house once I've seen the house & get some furniture...I think it would be better to work out what colours to add once I can see how much light the house gets.

Here is a link which helped me in choosing which 'white' to choose

Kitchen Layout Done

Here is the finalised kitchen:

We're putting in our own appliances - All Smeg appliances: the cooktop is designed to be completely flush with the benchline (love it), 90cm underbench oven & rangehood.
  • upgraded to 40mm caesarstone 'Ice Snow' benchtops with matching servery top & waterfall edge
  • upgraded to polyurethane doors in Crisp White
  • upgraded to aluminum kickboards
  • included soft close drawers & doors
  • upgraded to double undermount sink
  • added a microwave tower
  • added a lazy suzan
  • added a garbage unit/cupboard
  • added drawers instead of cupboards
  • extended the breakfast bar
  • the floors will 'Rex Concreate' in Mud
  • the splashback will be 'Casa Mood Mosaico Neutra Silver Lux' with white grouting
It's going to be a white white white kitchen...below is the kitchen display for a Madisson

Monday, June 16, 2008

Interior Decorator

I sought advise from an interior decorator thinking she will solve all my colour problems but sad to say it didn't really work out for me. I showed her all the colours I'd picked so far such as the floor tiles, the caesarstone bench top, the splashback and I wanted a colour for the kitchen and all I got was 'white' which *#$%^#@ white...and this person was also recommended to me.

It's such a waste of time, take it from me you don't need an interior decorator. I came up with white also but which one??? I'm still no closer to deciding and the same goes for the external & doors, architraves, eaves, garage doors, windows and most importantly the house colour. That was one thing she provided a house colour it's a shame it was the same colour as my floor tiles...she thought my floor tiles were white??? I'm very disappointed indeed, with her fee I could have gotten something else for the house.

She did sway me into considering having pearl 'white' windows instead of the birch white. The birch white seems more cream than white; but still not sure it will go with the bricks we've chosen. I'll be deciding this by the end of the week, let's hope it all works out.

DA Approval

Our DA has been approved, it was quicker to approve getting a double storey house built than it was for the kitchen guys to send us a quote (we finally received it on Friday, it only took 7 weeks). It took less than 5 weeks for council to approve our plans how efficient is that!!! We sent the application for demolition last Tuesday and we received that today too!! Can't complain about that, now to get the tree removal application going...will most likely need a landscape plan to show that we'll replant after the house has been built.

Here's a photo of the house & block. Very excited now, can't wait to get started now to sort out the kitchen quote so we can finalise the contract.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Kitchen Quote

It's been six weeks since our initial kitchen appointment and we're still waiting to get the quote....there's only so much following up you can do to move it along; if you went to any other kitchen company I'm sure this wouldn't happen. It's really just unacceptable now. I don't think it would change if I called Eden Brae to let them know this is what's happening...not sure when all of this needs to get wrapped up...We've been provided with absolutely NO direction in terms of what and when things need to happen.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Tile Selection_Di Lorenzo Tiles

Hannah from Di Lorenzo was our consultant, she was so patient with me and gave great advise. I fell in love with the concrete look for the living area floors, so we're getting a quote for the semi-polished porcelain tiles 'Rex Concreate' in Mud, love it. I thought we should keep the same tiles all the same on the ground floor, so the laundry and powder room will have the same tiles but smaller size. It's great they've got these in mosaic as well so for the splashback in the powder room & laundry I can continue the same look.

For the bathroom we've decided on polished porcelain tiles for the walls (300x600) with matt porcelain tiles on the floor. I'm still undecided about the vanity colour and basin. It doesn't match the other tiles but the bathrooms will be upstairs.

The carpet is a dark grey which gives a lovely contrast to the floor tiles, this carpet is 100% won't bring up fluff (like wool) and is more stain resistant than wool.

This photo doesn't do it justice, I love these mosaic tiles for the kitchen splashback; it's 'Casa Mood mosaico Neutra Silver Lux'...looks great with white grout.

I think I need to re look at my colour selections
now that I've picked my floor tiles...

Sunday, May 11, 2008

waiting on costing...

It's been three weeks since our colour selection appointment and we are still waiting on the costing...not sure how this can take so long;

we had our kitchen selection appointment last week and had no idea how much we had raked up in upgrades from the last appointment. The consultant for the kitchen selection had warned me it will take at least 2 weeks before we hear from him as Eden Brae was behind (from system issue they had??? ).

Now we have our tile selection coming up next week and again its hard to decide if we want to upgrade anything since we don't know how much anything we decided costs...very frustrating deciding on anything as they're unable to tell you how much????not sure this is the best process.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Colour Selection & Electrical appointment

We had our colour selection appointment last week, so I was diligently preparing for this appointment. I needed to decide what fixtures I wanted in the bathroom (taps, basins, bath, colours for the cabinets) and also the kitchen (tap, sink, bench top, finish on cabinets & handles) as well as deciding on the internal & external colours.

We had already decided on the bricks so it was just a matter of deciding on the colours of the garage, moroka finish, guttering, windows & doors. I wish there was a way we could look at the facade and put the colours in to see the end would think with photoshop and similar applications this would be easy to set up.

The picture above is the facade we've decided on with a few changes - instead of a gable to the front balcony it will be a hipped roof and we've added eaves to the house. As much as we wanted to have it rendered we thought we'd upgrade on the bricks instead so we're having Balmoral sandstock bricks, Greenstead moroka finish to the front balcony, Barramundi (charcoal) roof, anodic off white for the windows & paperbark for the garage. Hope it all works.

The other changes are yet to be finalised, we're still waiting on the costing.

We also had our electrical appointment, I think that went really well. We went back to the display home this wkend and looked at our electrical plans to see if we needed to add anymore lights or power points - very small changes. I feel a lot better about the extra money we're spending on electrical. I think it's a bit misleading for the display home to have upgraded the lighting in the house and not disclose how much this costs...we had no idea it would be so expensive - they should at least specify that each down light will cost $100 a pop...(there were over 70/80 down lights in the display home).

Sunday, April 27, 2008

First timers building our 'dream' home

We haven't even started building yet and our 'dream' home is already compromised...little did we know that when we walked into that display home what we would be walking into was not the house we thought we could afford but the house we would like to have if we had an extra $100k for upgrades.

It took us a year of looking in Sydney to decide that we were better off buying a block of land and building a house we liked, to buying an existing home which needed to be renovated at some stage when it was affordable to do so. It also took us a long time to finally give up the idea that we could buy a half decent house and also live close to the city. After coming to this realisation it didn't take us long to find a block of land in the Hills district; in hindsight we should have moved out of the eastern suburbs a long time ago.

So we've signed up with Eden Brae and are in the midst of selecting everything for the house which for me has been a fun experience so far.