Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Just went by the house (after taking my cooktop to the stone mason) to check the windows were closed since it's been raining quite heavily the last two days and found no one on site, apparently should be some activity with sanding the place before the painter starts plus doing the gyprock on the ones they had cut a hole through; there's been no work the last two days at the house....

Bathroom Tiles

Di Lorenzo Tiles have done a really great job on the tiling but I've not fully checked (and I'm no expert) so will wait until it's all done and cleaned.

Stegbar went to the house on Mon to measure the screens and shelves to which my SS invited me to. Stegbar did tell me that you can have a 'frameless' shower screen to which the doors will be hinged to the glass panel, which is what I've ordered He also said that as we are having a dual shower there will be a lot of water so a hob may be a good idea...funny that's not what they have on there web site...it seems a bit weird that they are now getting Stegbar involved and not when I was making the variation.

I think the tiles would have looked stunning if I only went to the ceiling, oh well will have to wait now until we move in. It just looks a bit unfinished but will wait and see once it's painted.

I did want to get this sorted out now but apparently if I get the tiler in now to tile to the top the cornices will have to be taken out as it will hit the cornices and will stick out. I didn't think it would be a big deal the tilers are coming back anyway, it's just the cornices and gyprock will have to be redone. The carpenter is coming on Thurs, he could take the cornices out then? So what's the big deal??

main bathroom: "the hobless one", check out the floor below

looks a bit ugly with the tiles cut but that's the standard height...I think it was more work cutting the tiles than just going to the ceiling. It seems a bit inflexible this whole thing.

Here is the ensuite bathroom: 'with hob' doesn't have the same clean lines as the one above, the shower screen will sit on the top in the inside of this, which will make it more noticeable.
EB have not apologized about this mistake or acknowledged the fact that they made a mistake.

dual shower in the ensuite; notice the side of the shower - will definitely tile this higher at least to the shower height, looks a bit weird how it drops down....guess had not fully visualised this oopssy

I looked at this photo again below of the bathroom in the entertainer 37 and the tiles weren't done to the ceiling, so mine may look ok once painted, I hope.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Counting down to Walk Through

I've been following my fellow blogger Graham building with Wisdom Homes it has taken WH's 6 weeks from lock up stage to a walk through next friday - 6 weeks....so how long will it take EB?

Graham's build has taken 4mths to our 6mths and still to complete. Graham started later than us by 2/3 weeks.

I noticed this afternoon when I went past the house that the balcony tiles had been done, this must have been done on Friday, it matched the colour of the moroka finish quite well so pleased with that. Hopefully the balcony railing will come this week, I just want that scaffolding down.

The house is looking quite messy, there's heaps of crap out the front.It seems like EB only clean up the site when a CM sees the site or when there is an inspection. Where's that OH&S guy from EB when you need him??? There's stuff there that's not even from my house???

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Hob It

Went to the house yesterday to look at my beautiful tiles to find this thing sticking out of the floor, my initial thought was WTF is that???? I asked my SS what's that black thing sticking out of the bathroom floor, his reply it's a hob. A what???

We've asked for a fully frameless shower screen in the ensuite and a fully frameless panel for the other bathroom.

I guess when I asked for this variation I assumed that when you ask for a 'FULLY FRAMELESS' shower screen you don't need a hob, what the &%^^%*k do you need a hob for???? I assumed the hob is there for when you want a frame to put it on.

So now we have one bathroom without a hob for the frameless panel and we have another bathroom with a hob for the frameless screen with a pivot door.
So how can you get one right and one wrong?????

Not sure if EB has noticed this but I'm having the same tiles for both bathrooms, I'm having the same benchtop and the same colours and the same basin at least this is what I've ordered (lets hope this is what they've ordered too)....so can you understand my dilemma I'm all for consistency and symmetry.

It's only a hob but I think they are hard to clean, scum builds up around it, the grouting looks crap after a while. If the tiles don't get done properly they look ugly.

Hence my variation for a fully frameless shower screen.

Now I have no idea WTF I'm getting. I don't think this should be allowed. I'm not allowed to make changes as they charge me an arm and a leg to do so yet they seem to be able to change what the *&^&*k they like????? Not happy Jan

My SS told me that it would be better to have a hob as he has one in his house and that water will run everywhere with a frameless shower screen; he can have that opinion but it's not for him to decide what I have and don't have in my house that is for me to decide...and I really don't like these changes that I've not signed for.

First the horrible stickers on the glazing of the bifold doors - apparently this is required by law, ok will have to live with that; they should say that when you get the upgrade hey by the way they've got these ugly stickers on them do you still want to spend $3k on that???

Edit: They also had the electrical box on garage side on the plan but actually installed it on the other side. So not as per the plan...

Now the hob, what next.

Another thing I'm not happy about, we've asked for the tiles to be 1.2m silly me assumed that if you asked for this that the waterproofing would be done at this level too, apparently not they still do the standard. I thought the whole point of going high was to make sure you reduce the incidence of water damage. I guess it wouldn't matter how high they go if they stuff up the floor and don't do this properly - how come no-one checks this???? to make sure this was done properly???

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Kitchen In

As mentioned in my last post, went on site today and saw the tiles and I also checked out my kitchen, the kitchen is in baby woohooo; looking good and the soft close drawers are a winner.

I was comparing 'my new kitchen' to my previous kitchen renovation which was awesome and I went 'all out' on that one;blum fittings, german made drawers, built-in dishwasher, oliveri sink..the list goes on it was done through Domayne...so this kitchen can't really compete with that but I'm sure I will grow to love it...

I did take pics of the kitchen but may hold off on publishing them at least until the benchtop is done.

Ready Set Tiling

The tilers started this morning and they will be working all week to do the bathroom, ensuite, wc's, laundry and powder room downstairs plus the splashback for the kitchen. I was very excited to see the tiles today...they look hot hot hot can't wait to see them laid. I think this is the most exciting part of the build, seeing it all come together. I really really wanted the tiles laid to the ceiling but it was just over our budget since we already upgraded on the tiles used; could this be something we could do after?? or would it look disjointed?? maybe just to the shower area?? anyway cannot wait to see them.

When we were choosing our tiles I'd thought about doing the tiles after the build as we found this great/ amazing Japanese tiler which did out bathroom renovation in Bondi. He was such a perfectionists, I couldn't fault one tile laid it was just perfect; so the pressure is on as I want the tiles and kitchen perfect - I may even get Takami to check them.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Stairs Completed

The stairs were completed last week, just didn't get a chance to see them; they look great I wish I'd had them stained now, instead of putting carpet. Only the bottom two steps will be stained.

Hume Doors

Our front doors in..yay...hip hip hooray...these are Hume Illusion Doors with Africana Slumped glass, they'll be painted white; not sure what happened to the side lights (should be getting them next week), will have the same glass as the doors. I'll take a pic from the outside tomorrow. I think they've turned out well; again maybe these should have been stained also...plus all our doors are in upstairs, just forgot to take pics...the bifold doors were also completed the glass went in yesterday - not too happy with seeing some stickers on them, the stickers are sandwiched in between the two glass...must have them apparently by law...some safety shit...they kind of look ugly.

Update on Progress Inspection

The carpenter was busy again this week fixing up the issues we had from the progress inspection which weren't rectified before the linings went in; so we did end up cutting holes through the walls to fix the issues but they are fixed - thank you EBH for making good on these matters.

Both the main truss girders were bolted (plus others which weren't specified by the property inspector), manhole will be relocated (the carpenter was going to do this today) and the cables were pinned to the side away from the metal brace.

4 down 17 to go...of the outstanding issues - at least we're getting somewhere

Hive of activity at the house this week with the waterproofing done on Wed as well as the carpenter busy with the skirtings and window sills. Glazing done on Thurs as well as the carpenter putting the front doors in and fixing stuff. Today the kitchen was getting installed, we saw the plumbers come early this morning also, so it's been a very productive week indeed and it's looking more and more like a house.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Carpenter Busy

The carpenter was busy last Wed & Thurs I went by the house before my evening class and he was still there I've not been inside so not sure exactly what's been completed but from the looks of things the stairs & doors are done so are the cornices & architraves (this is from my SS as I called him last week to ask what's been happening), hoping to see the house next week; so I guess it has reached lock up stage....but the bi fold doors still have no glass so the house is not fully 'lockable' with the kitchen cupboards coming next week I'm a bit concerned. I'm really not comfortable with the idea that the house is not fully locked up when the fixtures and fittings are going in.

Hopefully the balcony railings will come soon so the balcony can get done and the scaffolding to go.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Taste of Sydney

Not really house related but looking forward to attending Taste of Sydney tomorrow.


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

More on Progress Inspection

Last friday we wrote a formal letter of complaint regarding last weeks debacle to the Construction Manager (CM). In our letter we also voiced our concern regarding the 'independent' inspection done by Tyrrells as we have not seen this report to date and according to my SS will not see until the end of the build. Not sure if I agree with this procedure...

Our CSR suggested we have a meeting with our CM, we were concerned with EB's procedure and the amount of outstanding issues from the progress report. The CM did not waste any time and conducted the meeting this morning on site. I think Howard has helped us on this score.

From our meeting this morning our CM told us that EB will be changing their procedure on how the progress inspection will be done. The SS will have a checklist to go through in terms of what needs to be completed before they have a progress inspection done by anyone (Tyrrells, council or client). I guess by doing this it will eliminate having such a long list of issues at the end of the build; Hopefully will see some outcomes/actions from this meeting this week.

The meeting was positive and empathetic to our concerns so hopefully will not have a repeat performance of last week.

Gyprock & Plastering

Gyprocking commenced last Thursday (day of hell) most of the gyprocking was completed. Continued late Friday afternoon with plastering over the joins of the gyprock and finished by the wkend. It took 5 men over 3 days to complete this.

photos from today:

We went on site today with the CM and was relieved to see that the opened windows over the wkend did not result in any damage of the linings, no signs of warping. It was raining quite hard on Sun and as much as I wanted to go on site and close the windows, I refrained as per our contract...

Friday, March 6, 2009

Outstanding Items from Progress Inspection

Lets hope EB handle this better than yesterday, we have again requested we reinspect the property once the outstanding items have been rectified and provide a completion date on the outstanding items.

I'm totally stressed by this whole process which does not help my current state of health as I'm also 'battling' cancer and undergoing treatment whilst all this is happening. We felt like we had no choice but proceed with the building process when I was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer late last year in Sep/Oct the same time construction started. The turn of events with EB have been totally unexpected.

I can't imagine things getting worse than yesterday, lets hope they improve...

Following items outstanding:
  1. Front top level window sill needs to be replaced as it has been poorly laid.
  2. Rear right side brick window sill is broken and needs repairs.
  3. Weep holes need cleaning out in areas.
  4. Brickwork needs acid washing in areas
  5. Lower level roof lead flashings need dressing down correctly - front and back of house
  6. Some of the windows will need aluminium angles to cover the cavity gapping now visible.
  7. Right side small fascia return is not level. To be replaced as per its intended operation
  8. An Engineer to certify the engaged piers in the garage as they should be 350mm x 230 not 230mm x 230mm. The garage external brick wall also needs ventilation to be fitted.
  9. Site needs appropriate surface inlet drainage points to be completed off correctly in areas, subject to Builders contract Specifications. check out the photo of the flooding below.
  10. Some Aluminium windows and sliding/Bi-fold doors tested “inadequate” (cannot even close the back window)
  11. Downpipes to be installed
  12. Rear alfresco area window lowlight has a loose rubber seal - not sure if this was actioned prior to linings
  13. Floor sheeting joints will need to be sanded smooth, prior to completion and some of the loose floor sheets must be screwed to prevent future movement after carpets or agreed floor coverings have been fitted.
  14. Inspector recommend blocks be fitted to wall to accommodate a future wall mounted dryer
  15. The front concrete kerb is damaged as shown and will need repairs. The cause of kerb damage is to be confirmed as to who did this damage. This occurred when the bricks were delivered.
  16. Rear steel door jamb needs to be sealed as there is rusting visible in areas
  17. Balcony area still not complete

This was taken when we had heavy rain last month

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Progress Inspection

This is the wall which was not lined and was not rectified correctly - cables were not behind the metal brace
unable to now verify as wall was lined already - but cable was not behind metal brace

cable in front of noggin - could not verify
According to the property inspector this ground floor truss girder bracket needed bolting to prevent ceiling damage in the future - EBH did not action as they followed the frame manufacturers specifications - never mind our safety
This is the top floor truss grinder as above EBH did not action as they followed the frame manufacturers specifications - never mind our safety. Apparently the council had signed off on this also, but we're not privvy to this report until handover????

Manhole area inadequate entry - EBH did not think this was an issue and couldn't move it anywhere else
Bird nesting?? in the kitchen area around the ground floor steel beam, which the property inspector suggested this should be cleaned out to prevent the spreading of and lice or other diseases and inspected by a Pest Control professional; apparently this was cleaned out by the carpenter but who's to know- we didn't see it get done? I won't be expect a pest control report either.

As you can see there weren't many issues here which needed rectifying and which could have been sorted out prior to the linings going in, it's just the way it was handled (badly) We have just lost trust in EBH...just very poor form


I'm very very disappointed with the way things were handled today. I'm just totally shocked by what went down today.

We had our progress inspection or independent inspection done on Tues; there were several issues coming out of the inspection which we wanted rectified prior to the insulation and linings going in. The problem was that the insulation was booked for the next day and the linings to happen today or fri.

We wanted the property inspector to re-inspect the rectification prior to the linings going in but when I went by the house they had already started the linings therefore we couldn't see if things got fixed.

My SS did show me one part of the wall were the gyprocking hadn't been done were the electrical cables had to be fixed - of course this wasn't done properly so who knows if the other stuff got fixed. No-one has obviously checked them.

Just very disappointed that we weren't given the opportunity to check that things from the inspection report were actually actioned; Not sure why this was handled this way??? so what can we do now? ask EBH to cut holes in the walls so we can check? obviously not...

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Progress Inspection

We had the progress inspection done yesterday and we had a few issues which needs to be addressed prior to the linings scheduled for Friday.

So the report was sent out by the building inspector late last night 10pm.
Issues found from the inspection:
1. top level window sill needs to be redone - not straight
2. some windows require aluminum angles due to cavity b/w bricks
3. fascia near kitchen not at right angles to redo incorrectly installed
4. garage piers and ventilation
5. cables to go behind the metal brace and away from it
6. bird nesting???
7. truss grinder bracket needs bolting
8. manhole too small
9. some windows not closing properly
10. weep holes not cleaned - bricks have not been cleaned for that matter
11. roof lead flashing still incomplete
12. roof tiles incomplete due to scaffolding
13. downpipes incomplete
14. alfresco window loose rubber seal
15. lots of noggins incomplete
16. blocks to be fitted in laundry - recommendation
17. Floor sheeting joints will need to be sanded smooth and some of the loose floor sheets
must be screwed to prevent future movement after carpets fitted
18. Loose ceiling trimmer to be nailed off.
19. slab floor needs cleaning

So the next step is to get these issues resolved prior to the linings going in on Friday. Obviously not everything will get done by Friday but there are too many issues which needs to be fixed first before moving on.

What I don't understand happening is that the insulation went in today prior to these things being fixed or checked.

The electrician went in today to fix some of the issues but these have not been checked to make sure they are ok prior to the insulation going in....

Why put the insulation in when there are so many outstanding items??? NOT HAPPY JAN

Another issue I came across - the electrical box was on the wrong side of the electrical plan
Now obviously when they did the electrical plan no one has bothered to go on site to check where the overhead power line is otherwise they would know not to put it on the other side...so can they just make changes to the plan???? without an amendment schedule??? how do I know if Integral Energy is ok with this and if council is ok with this since this is a corner block we weren't meant to have any utility installation on this facade....

Another issue I picked up and this is tiny, the microwave powerpoint was not included in the electrical plan as this was done before the kitchen selection process. The variation list was updated but not the plan. The electricians apparently have a copy of the final kitchen plan so I'm hoping they pick it up from there.

There's also one thing I was concerned about the electrical plan was the two light switches in the main bedroom - should be one on either side of the bed - so I was wanting to check this to see to make sure they would be positioned were we could reach them....if you are paying almost $10k for your electrical upgrade you want them to be right...also how do they fit the electricals for the stairs when the stairs are not there????

I called my SS this morning to see if he has received the report, he said he is unable to check till this afternoon, you would think he'd want to see this straight away to fix any issues before the linings get put in....we are having another inspection done on Thursday to check what issues have been resolved prior to the linings going in. Again this doesn't leave much time - actually none at all if issues have not been resolved??????

Now I'm on a roll, the bricks were meant to be cleaned yesterday, I really wanted them cleaned prior to the inspection so they can be rectified before we move on to the linings again....

There are too many unfinished jobs -

scaffolding not down
bricks not cleaned
balcony to finished
downpipes incomplete
floors too dirty
and all of the issues found from the progress inspection