Thursday, February 11, 2010

Day 51: Wild weather, but trusses about 80% complete!

Woke up this morning and happy to see clear skies and warm weather. This all changed by about 4pm, when the skies turned black and solid sheets of water fell from the skies - cutting out power to my office block, so I left early to check on the site.

And happily it appears the chippies were able to get a heap of work done in the morning prior to the storm - lots of trusses installed, maybe 80% complete? Just trusses over the sitting room and entry gallery to be completed.

Only had time to take a couple of photos on my iphone before the rain went mad again - here's a pretty wonky photo standing in the hallway ;looking towards the back of the house - study is to left, laundry to right. Void in trusses for the future staircase. Having the trusses in lets us get an idea of how large the rooms will really be. I'd highly recommend to anyone building a house to upgrade to higher ceilings if your budget permits - you definitely can't add this later on, and it gives a much more spacious feel to the house! I've heard of huge variations in how much builders charge for higher ceilings. I think ours were great value, only about $2000 more for 2.7m ceilings to the ground and I can't remember how much (less than $2k) for 2.55m ceilings to first floor (Metricon apparently don't offer higher ceilings than this for ground & first). One builder on H1 wanted $10k for 2.7m ceilings to a single storey house - wow!

The pic above shows floor trusses in open plan rear area - the kitchen area is covered by trusses, the open area to the left is the dining area (no first floor above here). You can see two pipes for the kitchen sink, but for some reason there's a big pipe near the frame and we can't work out what it's for - there's no plumbing void marked on the plans, so we'll ask our SS next week about that.

Hoping the weather will hold off tomorrow morning so the remaining trusses can be installed, and maybe the start of first floor trusses, though maybe scaffolding will be needing.

And for anonymous who wanted to know what the payment breakdown is, it's like this:

  • $1000 initial deposit; covers site survey and soil test (well, it did for us anyway)
  • $3000 at preliminary contract acceptance to cover cost of custom plans
  • 5% (less the previously paid $4000) at contract signing
  • Base: 20%
  • Frame: 20%
  • Lockup: 25%
  • Fixing 20%
  • Completion 10%
Now that we've started along the journey, it's plain to see the payments are clearly biased to having most of the money upfront -ie by the time you get to lockup you've already stumped up 70% Perhaps that's why (for most builders not just Metricon) the first 3 stages go by quickly, then things tend to slow down at fixing & completion. Would be interesting to hear if anyone has successfully negotiated different payment percentages? Of course, ultimately you end up paying 100%. Also, note that things like postcontract variations are added/subtracted on you completion payment - we'll have to pay about $15k more for various additions, less $1000 for power pole, plus $x for retaining wall and whatever other little things turn up.

Anyway, we're pretty happy about progress on the site - at the start of last week we had a few plumbing pipes in the ground, now we're starting on the first floor frame! Providing the weather holds off, we're fairly confident our SS's predictions of frame completion by end of February will work out - and of course, another bill for 20% of the build in our letterbox!



  1. Looks like your beer bribes are working!! Only a few days the house has a shape now.

    I asked for higher ceiling and they say it is offered by the momentum package which I took. It is only 2550mm to ground.

    Mine is slow not even pre-approvals yet. Need some bribery tactics!!!

  2. Hi again, yours is really moving along! Tomorrow we'll finally get to see our Hampton again after 2 weeks (we're not based in Melbourne so unfortunately we can't drop by just because of a power cut!) Going by our kitchen, the two large pipes are just a single U-shaped conduit for the hot/cold water supply. When the plubming is put in, they just thread the rubber hoses through the conduit to get at your island bench. It should all be hidden by your cabinets at the end. The small pipe is the waste.

    The payment schedule was something we didn't like either, but Metricon basically said take it or leave it... I suspect they'll cover their entire building costs by lock-up stage, then they can take their time to finish up. That's why I'm rather pessimistic about my finishing date... that and the 420 day contract period!

    Will actually be in Box Hill on Saturday, visiting friends, so I'll try to look out for a Metricon site with a 1.5 storey frame!

  3. Hi T&T

    Thanks alot for the payment stage breakdown.




Related Posts with Thumbnails