Tuesday, November 09, 2004

It's a neeewwww home!

To begin with, let me give you a bit of background on our home. About 5 years ago, we moved into a single story house in Castle Hill (north west suburb of Sydney, about 40 mins out). We bought it because we liked a lot about it, it had a fireplace and a pool, and backed onto a park. Yay for us! Once we moved in, we wanted to change everything. Not so yay. Our rose tinted glasses had hidden from us some interesting features. For example, the kitchen looked like it had been built by the previous owner, who had illusions of grandeur about his home handyman skills. It was solid enough I guess, but not overly level. Also, they must have been a short family as the benches were quite a bit lower than normal. This was great fun for hubby b, who is about 6" 2' in height. Trying to do the washing up became lower back exercise!
The next thing we found was that the bathroom benches were also put in by the same guy, dodgy quality. After a while living there, the floor started making ominous creaking noises, had visions of going straight through to the under house section!

After a few years we decided to do something about it all. As there were quite a few things we wanted to change, we had to toss up between renovating and rebuilding. After a few months trying to chase builders for a quote for renovation, and finding out that they were either dodgy or too expensive, we went for the rebuild option.
We looked around at many many many homes at Homeworld, finally settling on a house built by Mirvac. So far, so good. The next year or so we were on the merry go round of amending plans, and trying to get through council.
One of the holdups was that we wanted a fireplace in the new place. Mirvac had a wobbly over this, as this was not standard and they weren't really sure how to do it... *sigh*. They sorted it out, but then council had it's own wobbly. It turned out that our bad weird neigbours, (as opposed to our just weird neighbours, this is another story..) had put in a complaint about it, as they didn't want us to have one. So, council would only let us have it if the chimney was a good metre higher than standard, to meet the strictest possible regulations for chimneys. To put this in perspective, this would normally occur if the house next door was up the hill from us, and the smoke would blow straight into their house. Our situation is that we are level, if not a bit higher than them... another *sigh*.
Anyway, after much stuffing about, we finally got approval and went ahead with the building. We had visions of going to visit and being pleasantly surprised by the progress, and all going smoothly. HA! Nothing could be further from the truth. I think they were trying to set the record for most amount of time taken to build. We had independent inspections done each step of the way, and thank goodness we did. There was not a single inspection where there was not a list of things that needed to be fixed! This was quite a shock for us, as Mirvac is a very well known company here, built all the housing for the Olympic village, so we thought they would be much more professional.

After quite a few stuff ups, and a lot of following up with Mirvac, (eg. no really, we still want the right balustrade put in, you know, the one we PICKED!), we are now in our new home! Hoorah!

We have been in two months almost, and it feels like home already. Now we just have to get the deck done, the pool resurfaced, the landscaping done, the curtains put in.....


Blogger DaFFy said...

Hi Amanda - saw you cruised past my by blog - we are also building with Mirvac...tell me it's going ot get easier *beg*

11:02 pm  
Blogger Amanda said...

What can I say about Mirvac... hmmm... well we have a very nice new home, but only through vigilance on our part. With Mirvac you need to watch them as they do make mistakes. We did find though, that they were pretty good when you told them things needed fixing, they were quick off the mark to do so.

7:21 am  

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