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294 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2290695 6-Aug-2019 08:54
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Good point about storage, and the extra area in the garage might be cheaper than having usable space & a pull down ladder in the attic (another possible option for us), we'll ask about that.

 

No eaves? Wow, yeah I imagine there's a few people that would like to meet who ever came up with that idea. Thankfully this does have eaves, and they explained to us that they'll contribute a little to keeping the house cooler in summer by blocking some of the high summer sun out of the rooms.

 

Ah this is in the North of Christchurch, in a Woodend subdivision called Two Roads.

 

We'll note down to request extra insulation between the master and lounge, as yeah good point, especially if you want to play games / TV etc I can see that being a nightmare for the person wanting to sleep.

 

Thanks for the tip about reddit, I've found the thread here and I'll give it a good read: https://www.reddit.com/r/newzealand/comments/clr7uv/a_real_nightmare_experience_building_for_the/

 

Thumbs up to Whitehouse so far for avoiding the same Kiwisaver issues that person on reddit faced. They talked us through the entire process of what's involved with using our Kiwisaver and getting the Homestart grant, and even gave me a call later when they realized they hadn't asked me about the income cap. They could have left us to figure that out, and it's not their job to inform me about the T&C's of it but I think that's a great sign that they did do that. It's little things like that, that make us confident they're good to build with.

 

And they seem to go out of their way to do things that help increase resale value, like slightly higher ceilings, slightly fancier light switches. We were impressed by little touches like a basin in the second bathroom (which you'd think would be standard right, but from a couple of other company's showhomes, it's not!) and having it recessed so you don't walk into the thing when you go in the bathroom. And apparently the owner is a perfectionist, which sounds good to me.

 

We'll ask who they use for the kitchen appliances, and we'll have a think about the dish washer again. Noted about the rangehood.

 

Usable attic space isn't included but that's one of the upgrades we're going to ask about yes. It makes sense to put lots of the otherwise empty space to use.

 

Off memory (from when we first met them nearly a year ago) they give us a budget for the power sockets / lights / data points and we can say where we want what etc. But totally agree, one thing I've seen come up on geekzone build threads time and time again is there's no such thing as too many power sockets. Apparently there's cat6 through the house as standard too, but that's something I'll double check.

 

Probably the slab perimeter insulation is out of our budget for the first home (it sounds like it at least) but certainly we'll start with beefier insulation, and look at the windows too. Ideally we want to avoid aluminum framing in the windows, it seems. Thinking of either a couple of heat pumps / few heaters around the house vs a heat transfer kit with heat pumps, but that's where we'll need to get everything priced out too.

 

Insulation R Values

 

When I originally asked about the insulation, they replied that "Our standard insulation is R2.6 and the standard ceiling is R3.6, upgrading the ceiling to R4.1 or R5.2 is a matter of costs and can be done quite easily."


2712 posts

Uber Geek


  # 2291071 6-Aug-2019 17:11
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We're in the process of having everything priced up for a build in Christchurch at the moment.

 

Are you building on TC1 or TC2 land? Most building companies advertise their prices based on a 3604 slab. On TC2 land you would require rib raft, which adds considerable expense (and many people opt for going rib raft even on TC1 land).

 

The PC sum for our excavation and rib raft foundation on our TC2 section is $30K more than an equivalent 3604 foundation on a TC1 section. That's the PC sum based on the site specific Geotech report, but could end up more or less (I don't think they ever end up less though!).  The difference isn't always as high as that, but I think normally at least $20K.

 

My understanding is PC sums for kitchen and electrical are almost always less than you end up spending as well. Ours certainly are.

 

Basically try to think of as much as you can as early as you can so you aren't in a position of having to make rushed decisions later on involving (often) significant sums of extra money.

 

EDIT: One thing we were moderately surprised by was that the cost to upgrade to thermally broken joinery and low e glass was not as high as we were expecting. We thought we wouldn't be able to afford it, but are now seriously considering it. Companies don't always suggest these options as they want their contract price to be more appealing. You need to do your research and pro-actively ask the builder what the cost of various options you are interested will be.

 

And don't make any assumptions that something will be included if it hasn't been specifically mentioned.


 
 
 
 




294 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291077 6-Aug-2019 17:21
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Paul1977:

 

We're in the process of having everything priced up for a build in Christchurch.

 

Are you building on TC1 or TC2 land? Most building companies advertise their prices based on a 3604 slab. On TC2 land you will require rib raft, which adds considerable expense (and many people opt for going rib raft even on TC1 land).

 

The PC sum for our excavation and rib raft foundation on our TC2 section is $30K more than an equivalent 3604 foundation on a TC1 section. That's the PC sum based on the site specific Geotech report, but could end up more or less (I don't think they ever end up less though!).  The difference isn't always as high as that, but I think normally at least $20K.

 

My understanding is PC sums for kitchen and electrical are almost always less than you end up spending as well. Ours certainly are.

 

Basically try to think of as much as you can as early as you can so you aren't in a position of having to make rushed decisions later on involving (often) significant sums of extra money.

 

 

Congrats on the place! If you don't mind me asking, how did you decide on a builder to go with?

 

We've had it budgeted as if it's TC2 land, and we'll consider it a bonus if it's TC1 and we'll have extra money for upgrades or a lower total price. Two Roads list it as likely TC1 but each lot needs its own testing to confirm. Our lot would be almost at the bottom right corner of this map:

 

 

Fingers crossed it comes up TC1! Whitehouse explained (complete with drawing pictures) how the foundation of a TC1 vs TC2 are built, which was interesting to learn.

 

Good points that we should allow for paying extra than the PC sums for kitchen & electrical, I'm sure we'll go over those too yes.

 

Ideally we would have loved to have the title earlier, but one advantage of having a few extra months is as you say, we can avoid making rushed decisions.


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  # 2291099 6-Aug-2019 17:51
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Again, on a slightly off-topic but related note, check out builder insurance. I am not casting aspersions on any builder, but it's a volatile industry a little like dominos and as a result, even the best builders can be taken out by unexpected circumstances. You don't want to end up severely out of pocket. Even some of the big firm's builders guarantees have hooks and conditions that mean they only payout in the most stringent of conditions. 

 

 

 

It's pretty pricey, and you may buy it and not need it, but if you don't and you do need it, it will pale in comparison. 

 

 

 

Lastly, paint and plaster and tiles finish is something that you'll notice for MANY years to come, make sure you get top quality work in this regard.

 

You may not be able to select your individual builder's painting subcontractor, but you should mention it (in writing) that it's a priority for you.


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  # 2291116 6-Aug-2019 18:26
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I know of a White House in Auckland CBD quite sure it's not a building company!

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  # 2291117 6-Aug-2019 18:31
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"know" lol :) 

 

 


Baby Get Shaky!
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  # 2291286 7-Aug-2019 00:36
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LostBoyNZ:

 

Paul1977:

 

We're in the process of having everything priced up for a build in Christchurch.

 

Are you building on TC1 or TC2 land? Most building companies advertise their prices based on a 3604 slab. On TC2 land you will require rib raft, which adds considerable expense (and many people opt for going rib raft even on TC1 land).

 

The PC sum for our excavation and rib raft foundation on our TC2 section is $30K more than an equivalent 3604 foundation on a TC1 section. That's the PC sum based on the site specific Geotech report, but could end up more or less (I don't think they ever end up less though!).  The difference isn't always as high as that, but I think normally at least $20K.

 

My understanding is PC sums for kitchen and electrical are almost always less than you end up spending as well. Ours certainly are.

 

Basically try to think of as much as you can as early as you can so you aren't in a position of having to make rushed decisions later on involving (often) significant sums of extra money.

 

 

Congrats on the place! If you don't mind me asking, how did you decide on a builder to go with?

 

We've had it budgeted as if it's TC2 land, and we'll consider it a bonus if it's TC1 and we'll have extra money for upgrades or a lower total price. Two Roads list it as likely TC1 but each lot needs its own testing to confirm. Our lot would be almost at the bottom right corner of this map:

 

 

Fingers crossed it comes up TC1! Whitehouse explained (complete with drawing pictures) how the foundation of a TC1 vs TC2 are built, which was interesting to learn.

 

Good points that we should allow for paying extra than the PC sums for kitchen & electrical, I'm sure we'll go over those too yes.

 

Ideally we would have loved to have the title earlier, but one advantage of having a few extra months is as you say, we can avoid making rushed decisions.

 

 

You'll love living out North Canterbury. Woodend is a great wee town. Certainly an area to watch with Ravenswood going in. They reckon the area will grow by upwards of 7 thousand+ people over the next 8-10 years. Tow Roads in a nice area, great easy access to Gladstone park and Pegasus from there.


 
 
 
 




294 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291361 7-Aug-2019 08:24
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Thanks, we'll check out insurance and consider that. I wouldn't want to have been a Stonewood Homes customer a few years back when they went into receivership.

 

I get the impression we're quite free to choose a subcontractor if we want, but I'll double check on that.

 

I'm curious about this "white house" in Auckland now, haha, or do I not want to know?

 

Totally agreed on Woodend, and especially once they upgrade the bridge and complete the new motorway into town, traffic should be smoother too.

 

We had a look at where the proposed Woodend bypass would be too, in the future, and thankfully it's not close to Two Roads.

 

 

 

 

 

 




294 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291387 7-Aug-2019 09:13
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Just a general question to add to the thread (as there's loads of good new build advice being posted in it). Does anyone have feedback on tiles vs laminate flooring? Carpet isn't ideal for most of our rooms as we'll have a couple of dogs.

 

I worry about tiles being too cold though, as we're down by Christchurch and we won't have underfloor heating (based on other GeekZone threads on the topic and how much it costs to run meaning people rarely ever turn it on).

 

Someone mentioned if you drop things in tiles they break. I imagine they come in different qualities, some stronger than others.


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  # 2291393 7-Aug-2019 09:19
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Tiles will feel pretty cold to walk on in winters. Laminate feels not to cold or hot in either summers or winters. They are also pretty good warranty wise and owner replaceable easily as you can replace just the plank that needs to be replaced. Make sure to buy some spare planks since the colour and model you will choose now might not be available after 20 years for any repair work.





Do whatever you want to do man.

  

779 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291410 7-Aug-2019 09:54
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Given the choice again, I'd go tiles.

 

We opted for vinyl planking in our place when we built in 2011. It does look great (have it in wet areas only) but is prone to scratching (think chair / table legs, stuff getting dropped in kitchen etc) and I suspect if you have dogs in the house, this will be more prevalent. Yes, they can be cold, but thats what slippers and/or shoes indoors are for. A mat in the bathrooms helps keep feet isolated from cold floors after showering etc.

 

I would seriously consider swapping B3 and B1 around on your plan too.

 

Having master bedroom sharing walls with 1 other bedroom and living room is less than ideal. May not be too much of an issue if you don't have others in the house, but future buyers may be put off by the proximity of master to other rooms (think privacy / sound proofing).

 

Not sure what the PC sum allowed for electrical is, but $12-15k would vanish pretty quick in a house build. In real rough terms, think about $100 per termination (light, switch, socket - so a bedroom with 2 power sockets, a light switch and 2 lights approx $500) which allows for cable (roughly 10m per fitting), LED light, labour, plastics etc. Add in $1-1.5k for switchboard, however much for HWC and $3-4k for a heatpump and that budget vanishes pretty quick. House alarm, $1-1.5k for a Bosch / Paradox domestic panel with IP communicator.

 

 


88 posts

Master Geek


  # 2291414 7-Aug-2019 09:57
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I'd go with laminate personally, I think it both looks and feels warmer (concrete slabs will be cold for a long time after you move in too). I also like that laminate flooring these days is very convincing - a friend of mine had it in their place and it took me a year to realise it wasn't real wood.

 

Something out of left field you might want to think about is the actual build contract. The standard templates usually have clauses in them that are weighted quite heavily in favour of the builder. Some builders will quietly agree that it isn't balanced and be happy to negotiate more balanced terms, while others will defend the stock template to the hilt. Definitely something to get proper legal advice about. 

 

I don't know much about the builders insurance. Banks require the builders to have their own contract works insurance and I was only making progress payments on work already completed (with the master build guarantee that another builder would complete the job if mine collapsed) so I didn't feel overly exposed to any risk there but I don't pretend to know everything about it.


267 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291431 7-Aug-2019 10:09
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Agree, I have a laminate wooden floor (on underlay). Much more comfortable than tiles. Looks great to IMO. 




294 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2291441 7-Aug-2019 10:22
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Thanks! 100% agreed on having spares too. A little spare paint is probably not bad too (I have almost no idea about paints but I assume it doesn't go 'bad' if stored properly).

 

I was really impressed how realistic the laminate looked too, a world apart from some laminate I've seen in the past.

 

I think we'll end up going for laminate, that's good to see people recommending it yes. Likewise good point to be aware of scratching. I wonder if some have more / stronger coating or protection on top than others. sen8or, can I ask if pricing wise your laminate was towards the high / medium / lower end?

 

Swapping those rooms around sounds like a good idea to me, and that marks several people now who worry about that being against the living room, which surely means future buyers will too.

 

We'll ask what the PC sum is in their budget. I can see how that would add up extremely quickly, and why people plug in multiple power boards afterwards.

 

We're pretty sure we've chosen our lawyer now, which will probably cost roughly around $1,700 for their work on the whole process. We've heard some horror stories about a different big brand building company where a tiny insignificant change after signing added a couple of weeks to the build time, and came with several hundred dollars in fees.

 

We'll have a look into builders insurance, as it never hurts to look. But yeah I'm the same, I have no idea at the moment about that sort of thing.


23 posts

Geek


  # 2291609 7-Aug-2019 12:55
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sen8or:

 

I would seriously consider swapping B3 and B1 around on your plan too.

 

Having master bedroom sharing walls with 1 other bedroom and living room is less than ideal. May not be too much of an issue if you don't have others in the house, but future buyers may be put off by the proximity of master to other rooms (think privacy / sound proofing).

 

 

 

 

Great comment.  Our house has our lounge sharing a wall with our bedroom, and I will NEVER consider a house with this setup again.  EVER.

 

If you opt for a smaller fridge try and leave enough space around your fridge to accommodate a larger size.  We're stuck with a space that we can only just squeeze a 400L fridge into, and with a family its just too small.  Wish we'd made the hole larger when we built the kitchen.


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