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Get the full picture

The best decisions are informed ones. That’s why information gathering about the building process is a crucial part of getting the full picture.

Talk with people who have built before, speak to people in the industry and make sure you ask potential builders lots of questions.

It can be tempting to dive straight into the exciting parts of building your new home such as the design, kitchens and bathrooms…especially after watching home renovation shows and browsing online!

However, houses are built from the ground up so the initial focus should be on the one thing every builder has to deal with – your land.

Considerations you need to be aware of…before you commit

Contour survey
A contour survey details the slope of your land and usually identifies available services, trees, easements and any other restrictions. Generally speaking, the steeper your block, the more costly it will be to build.

Has the results of your survey been included in your price?

Soil test
Before any builder can begin work on your new home, they need to know the soil type to determine the requirements needed for the foundations. Different soil types can add significant costs to your home.

 Have your soil test results been included in your price?

Site costs
Every home building project will have associated site costs, however these costs can vary significantly. Some examples may include trees, soil removal, retaining walls and the cost of connecting services such as water, electricity, gas, phone and sewerage. The soil test and contour survey help provide relevant information to determine site costs.

Are your site costs fixed and included in your price?

Bushfire assessment
If your property is within a bushfire zoned area, it will require a bushfire assessment to determine whether your home needs to include any mandatory bushfire risk management measures. There are six Bushfire Attack Levels ranging from Low to Flame Zone, each having a different impact on building costs.

What’s your Bushfire Attack Level? Has it been included in your price?

BASIX regulations
The NSW Government requires new buildings to comply with BASIX regulations, which help improve the sustainability and efficiency of all new homes. They include items such as water tanks, insulation, sarking, lighting, windows and fixtures. An individual assessment and report must be undertaken for every new home built. This can be done before you commit.

 Has your individual BASIX requirements been included in your price?

By ensuring these considerations are included before you commit, it will help avoid any hidden surprises that “allowances” may bring.

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