Saturday, October 10, 2009

Update - Land Delay

It's been a while since the last post, only because we are still waiting for the land developers to finish the land and get titled.

It was meant to settle on the 31/8 but it looks like it will be in November. Im not too fussed, time to save some more money, but the communication of the delay pissed me off. The conveyancer cant get much info out of the developer, so we are just in limbo at the moment.

Here are some photos of where the land is currently.

Tennis Center. In the same stage but will be finished before our house starts:

Monday, May 25, 2009


My home loan has been fully approved unconditional!!!

Valuation of the Land and House came in at the banks valuation.

Nothing can stop us now... P-Town here we come.

On another note Big Red (Mike), Georgie and Myself went up to the land on Saturday night at 11pm to check it out (and have a pizza from a shop thats open till midnight at ptown). Its completely flat so in a few weeks we should be seeing roads etc.

That's it for now.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Big piles of dirt are now small piles of dirt

BigRed and Myself went out to the land on Saturday 9/5. Since the last visit on March 28, the piles of dirt are mostly gone and they are protecting it with temp fencing hehe.

Here are some exciting photos of dirt :>

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Contracts signed and with the bank!

Hi All.

It’s been a while since I last posted. Mainly because nothing too much interesting has happened. I posted a blog last night by accident (i wasn’t meant to upload it, it should have had pictures).

On the 28/8 was our tile appointment. We were originally quoted $79 extra per sqm to tile the dining lounge and rumpus. We went in about a month ago and the tiles we chose had been moved to an upgrade selection. I was pissed off to say the least. I told my CSC that I will be getting it all done after handover because I wasn’t going to pay $100 per SQM to tile it. Georgie wasn’t happy either, and the poor girl that served us got an earful from her.

So at our actual tile appointment guess what, our consultant was the same girl, and the first thing she said was to Georgie "I remember you". It was really quite funny. I had walked in to the appointment not giving a shit and paid $8,350 to tile my house with the tiles I wanted. Just take my money and get the job done.

After that on the 5/5 I had my contract appointment. This was the most exciting thing for me so far because I just wanted a final price and not have to pick colours or tiles etc. I went in and did the man thing (I didn’t let Georgie come hehe) and signed my life away. 12 signatures and 100's of signatures later it was over. That’s it all done. Total construction price $178,202. So with land total purchase $312,202. Pretty good.

I handed them to the my broker today 7/5/09, and that’s it. The bank just has to value the house contract and its over (YAY!!!!!), well until building. The banks will probably take 5 weeks to unconditially approve the loan. My broker worked it out I have borrowed 88% of the total cost thus I’m broke. But there is still plenty of money for booze, don’t worry bigred!.

Here is the position in the drawings of my house.

I have blanked our street names etc to stop stalkers (like huddo) :P

Thats all for now. Ill keep you updated when i recieve the valuation and then the building start date is october.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Final Selections

Just a quick blog post with our final selections.


Another post with all the rest will follow! So don't stress BigRed!.



Boral Brushwood
Off-white Ironed Mortar

Roof Tiles

CSR Monier Elbana

Colour: Barramundi


A&L Windows
Colour: Merino

Garage Door

Panelmaster Caprice

Colour: Paperback


Front Door

Corinthian Doors


CB – Woodland Grey

Bench top

Quantum Quartz – Pencil Round 20mm
Colour: Coral Reef


Cabinet Doors

Laminex Milano Walnut

Glass Splashback

Mocha Magic



Technika Belissimo Freestanding Duel Fuel B9GEFTSS


TB10900HA – Technika Ballissimo 900mm Glass Canopy


TBD4SS Technika Belissimo S/Steel


Gutters, Fascias, Downpipes and Meterbox:

Wattyl Sunfast Low Sheen
CB – Woodland Grey


Wattyl Supercover Ceiling White


All Interior Walls

Wattyl Low Sheen Washable

Colour: Bone


Bathroom and Ensuite:

Laminex: Natural Zebrano


Friday, April 10, 2009

Interior and Exterior Selections.

Hey all.
This is our selection we are going to our Hopetoun Interiors appointment with on the 20/4.
I really just needed another excuse to upload photos lol. Sorry for the image quality, most of them are done with the crappy blackberry camera.

Bricks - Boral Brushwood.

Roof Tiles : CSR Monier Elabana Barramundi

Gutters, Facias, Window Frames and Downpipes:

Sinks in ensuite:

With this Mixer Tap:

Sink in Bathroom:

Benchtops in Bathrooms:

Cupboards in kitchen: (Laminex Milano Walnut)

Kitchen Bench: Quantum Quartz Ice



Carpet: Godfrey Hirst Old Leather. 2nd One Down

Handles in kitchen and bathroom

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Photo time

I’m really not liking having a blog and not being able to post photo's lol.

I went to pay the final deposit on the land today and while I was there I visited roughly were our land will be. As the stage in the estate our lot is in hasn’t been developed yet it’s just a pile of dirt. Below are some photos.

They will probably be interesting to look back on once the house is built.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

March Update

Well, it’s been awhile since I did my last update. Nothing too interesting to report other than spending alot of time in front of the photocopier and constantly signing documents.

Porter Davis
Since the last visit to Porter Davis and paid our deposit not much has happened in the way of colours and variations.

We became worried when it wasn’t until 20/3/09 that we had had some form of communication from them. That’s exactly a month later after paying the deposit. It didn’t bother us too much just concerned that nothing was happening. Luckily this has been resolved and I have been introduced to our Customer Service Coordinator.

I have booked in our Contract appointment with Porter Davis for the 5th May. This will mean that we will have no problem with the First Home Owners Grant and Timing of Contracts and Building. This brings us within 26 weeks from contract date to site start.

The National Tiles selection appointment is on the 28th April to finalise the tile selection. Georgie has a uni exam that day so I am trying to change it but if we can’t we will finalise all the selections earlier and when I go in i will just confirm that is what we want.

Due to the massive workload on the banks at the moment, it took much longer than expected to gain formal approval from CBA. We had to extend the finance approval clause in the land contract for another 2 weeks. Luckily after we applied for an extension the bank approved the loan.
This coming Saturday 28/3 I will be paying the remainder of the land deposit.

As I mentioned above because of the FHOG coming to an end the banks are backlogged with loan applications. This caused our loan approval to take ages and constant sweaty palms lol.

That’s about it for the moment. Georgie has been buying heaps of stuff for the house like frypans, cutlery and glasses. I think she is now hooked on buying stuff. Well atleast its not coming out of my pocket rofl! And it keeps her busy!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

BBQ's - Quick post in response to bigred's

I couldnt post a picture in the comment on Bigreds blog so I thought I would post this on mine.

Georgie and I went to Bunnings at 8.55 in perfect time to check out their BBQ's on offer.

I dont cook, and definantly dont cook anything fancy. Snags, Onion and Steak is about it.

Found this 6 burner hooded BBQ from Bunnings for $499 on sale. Looks pritty good to me. The only reason I didnt buy it is it probably wouldnt fit in Georgies car rofl.

Jumbuck 6 Burner 'Voyager' Hooded BBQ


  • Sliding Cylinder Tray
  • Electronic Display
  • Rear Burner
  • 201 Stainless Steel Fascia

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Lucks Changed! Back on Track.

Hi all.

Lucks finally back. A fun roller coaster of fun. After the issues discovered in the below post we have found a way around them all. A big relief to say the least.

The bank is unconditionally approving the land loan now. Porter Davis are preparing the contracts! Bit of a change to a week ago. Now just awaiting the valuation of the land (who knows how they do this when it is still hills of dirt lol)

We went to Hopetoun Interiors (again) on Saturday. We have pritty much finalised our color selections and bricks etc. I will update soon as I dont have the samples and names with me.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Naïve, poor research, incompetence of 3rd parties or just bad luck?

Hi All.

What a week it has been.

I don’t mean to sound pessimistic but the hopes of our Dream home the Stanford 24 on lot 888 Henty Park at Pakenham is not looking good.

In saying that I’m still trying to stay optimistic about the situation and many thanks to all on the homeone forum that have given great advice re the situation.

Well where do I begin?
Three factors have been brought to my attention which could very well cause the collapse of building the home.

1. First Home Owners Grant
I have give credit to the big chief (bigred) on bringing this to my attention. The first home owners boost states that:

Taken from the SRO VIC website (

New homes being built under a building contract To be eligible to receive the
$14,000 Boost for building a new home, first home buyers must have entered into
a contract to build a home between 14 October 2008 and 30 June 2009 (inclusive).

In addition:

construction must commence
within 26 weeks of the date of the contract

the contract
must specify a completion date for building work within 18 months of the date of
construction commencing or construction must be completed within 18 months of
the construction commencing.

In limited circumstances the Commissioner
may approve an extension to the commencement and completion date where the delay
was outside the control of the parties and could not have been foreseen at the
time of entering into the contract.

This is going to be an issue. The reason being so is that our land does not get titled until August 2009. Porter Davis has set the site start date as October 31st. So unless we hold of on signing the contract which is expected to be ready in 6 weeks then we will be over the 26 weeks and not be eligible for the FHOG.

A condition of the banks approval is that eligibility for the FHOG is a criteria before completely approving the loan.

The only way I can see around this is to ask Porter Davis if we can change the Site Start Date to September which will bring us in line with the 26 weeks. In all honesty I don’t care if they don’t start by then as its beyond my control according to the SRO, so long as it is the earlier start date in my signed contract.

2. Land and Loan Approval Timing.
Our land contract states that we must have full approval for the land by 13/3/09. With the contracts 6 weeks away, guess what? Up sh!t creek. We can apply for a 30 day extension on the approval date, but even that will be tight unless PD get there gear in order. And this is taking into account they can move the site start date to an earlier date.

3. Soil tests and Contract
This is an issue I didn’t think of until a member from homeone forums went through the same situation and told me that it may be an issue if Porter Davis does not do a soil test until the land is titled. This would mean that if they need a soil test to have the complete contract ready, then we would not be able to sign the contract until August and therefore be completely ineligible for the FHOG. This issue is not been confirmed with Porter Davis yet, and am awaiting a reply from them re the above. The block we have put our deposit on was a block that has been verified by PD for fixed site costs so I am hopeful this would not be an issue.

I am still slightly hopeful that we will be able to resolve the issues above, but in the case of it falling through it could have been worse. I could have lost thousands on deposits, or I may have been informed of these issues when it’s too late to pull the plug.

In saying this if this does fall through, and the unfortunate circumstance arises that I will have to pull the plug on our building dream I won’t give up.
I’m also thinking if this is the case, then I will buy an already build home (built in the last 2 years), and we won’t be able to choose the floor plan and customise as much as building, at least we will have a home of our own.

I will keep you all updated with any developments


Monday, February 23, 2009

Just take my wallet.. Come back with a house!

Just a quick update.

Well the fun has begin, and the paper chase in in full form.

An outline of what has been happening over the last 48 hours:

The Bank and Broker
The broker wants the First Homer Grant filled out and mailed back. This would be fine but to do so I need a building contract!

The bank is still doing the full full approval of the land loan and still waiting on approval on the construction loan. The bank sends these both out together!

Well the government wants a FHOG form filled in (obviously). With this you need the full building contracts which take up to 7 weeks to prepare (currently in week 2).

The builder wants copy's of my 100 page land contract and notification on conditional approval for the construction loan which I don't get until CBA passed on the approval for the land loan. The builder is waiting for there before they continue with everything.


I love the conveyancer. Hasn't bothered me one bit at all, and done exactly what I needed it to do with no hassle.

I should note that all companies involved have been fantastic, I just thought I would vent my paper frustration lol.

Ill also note that Georgie mentioned she wants to get the house unpainted (only if we get a credit from the builder, and only interior colours). She wants to do this because she wants to paint it. Hmmmmm... I suppose you can guess whats going though my head. LOL

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Good bye money.... Hello Variations!!

Today we had our variations appointment with Porter Davis. This involved getting out of bed nice and early, much to Georgie's disgust (and this was for a 10am appointment).

We met our customer service consultant and he gave us a big pile of papers. He went through every little detail and explained everything that was involved. He outlined the building quote, explained the fixed prices and gave us a thorough inclusions list.

He went through the process of how we pick the bricks, colours, tiles (that's a story), carpet etc. We only had 3 variations to the quote.

1. The Alfresco.
The Alfresco (fancy word for roof extension) will be 3.5m x 5.0m. This was $4561. I should note this is not including the concrete flooring.

2. "Sneaky" Door
Sliding door in Lieu of dining room window. This was a bonus. As we walked through the display house he noted that to have a sliding door in place of the window in the dining room would only be $319. This was one variation we couldn't pass by! Who wants a window when you can have a door!!!

3. Flooring!!!
This is the painful one. Our promotion includes floor coverings to all rooms. This means carpet to the dining and living rooms, and rumpus room (where I will be doing a fair bit of drinking). Who wants to eat or drink lol on carpeted floors. So we made the variation to get the Living, Rumpus and Dining floors Tiled. This is where the bank took a hit. $79 EXTRA per square metre.

They do not take the price of the carpet away. So technically we are paying to have flooring layed twice in both rooms. We could probably save money by getting it done aftermarket, but that would mean more stuffing around, and considering we are only getting 3 variations (or extras) I think I will just pay it.
I should note that to change the carpet in these rooms to tiles will cost me $5291. Ah well, you win some you loose some ROFL.

So where to from here? Should be getting a call from the Interiors showroom and National Tiles in the next couple of days.
I also have to shoot off a copy of the land contract (and two exist, one with the bank and the other with the conveyancer) so this might be fun! I also have to shoot of the bank approval to Porter Davis.

Still don't know if I should be happy or sad, so staying boarder line just for the while. Well until the bank approves the designs and land.

Excited or Stressed...? More boarderline.

On Friday 20/2/09, Georgie and Myself went to Porter Davis and finally put $1000 to get the house started. During this appointment, our Customer service consultant went though in detail the processes that we would be going though in next few weeks (and months, possibly years).

During this appointment not much happened in the way of extras and contracts. It was mainly picking our Facade and getting a file started for us.

Speaking of Facades, it is useful to note that Porter Davis Access range of homes do not include the rendering on the Facades as standard. Our customer service consultant wasn't happy that Porter Davis do not let the customers know this in the brochure, but he made it quite clear that our facade is "just bricks".

This came as no shock to us as most things that are pictured in brochures, or as displayed in the display homes are not actually what the finished house will be like.

Pictured below is what our Facade should look like but with our colour scheme. But keep in mind, it's just BRICKS, no render lol.

We made a time early Sunday to have what they call a "V.O", which ironically stands for variation appointment. This is were we will have a build quote and go though the inclusions and extras in detail.

Monday, February 16, 2009

And So It Begins.....


In early January I went with a good mate Mike (bigred) to Pakenham to look at display homes. I went just for a look with no intention a month later I would be paying deposits and applying for a loan for my first house.

After visiting the display homes in Pakenham and Lyndurst I made the decision to sign my life away and purchase a house and land package. My girlfriend Georgie is comming along for the ride (somebody has to pick the colours lol) but the house will be solely in my name and funded for myself.

We originally were looking at land in Lyndurst, as it was closer to the city. But we came across some information about a toxic waste dump being close by. This did not sit well with me so I started looking at land in Pakenham.
The added bonus was land was cheaper so I could afford a larger house.

The Land
After multiple emails and visiting estates I found a great block in the Henty Park Estate at a fantastic price. Even better Porter Davis were able to fix the site costs on this land. But there is a catch (I am unsure if this will be good or bad). Mike will be literally be around the corner from us lol.

The land will not be titled until July - August so they wont start building at least until August September. But I'm not too fussed how long it will take to build, as long as they do it properly :).

Yesterday. Sunday 15th February at 1pm I paid $500 to the estate agent and signed the land contract subject to finance.

This was when it felt real. As i was driving home I thought to myself "Sh1t, I own land".

The sales manager George was most helpful and explained everything in detail. He also held the land for a couple of days until I could make it in on Sunday.

I purchased lot 888 which has a 16m Frontage and is 528m2.

The House
We have made the decision after looking at countless display homes multiple times that the Porter Davis - Stanford is the best house to suit us. Georgie and Myself looked at a couple of other designs such as the Regent and Flagstaff IV too. I have read mixed reviews about Porter Davis, but I imagine all volume builders have the same type of issues. Our sales consultants at Lyndhurst have been the most helpfully and the Stanford is the best house to suit us.

We have visited the display home multiple times and visited the PD interiors showroom. We are only making a couple of modifications to the plan. E.G. Alfresco and Kitchen Cupboards. I am also tossing up if I should raise the ceilings. It depends on the extra cost as i imagine it wont be cheap 2k+.

I will be putting my $1000 down with Porter Davis in the next couple of days.

So what happens from here. I should hear back from my broker regarding the Loan Approval Status in the next 3 or 4 days (This is the stressful bit so far). The Conveyancer is now organised and all contracts are being forwarded to them for review. I also have to visit Porter Davis and get things rolling. I will update my blog as soon as I find out any progress.

Stay Tuned....