Building your new home will be one of the biggest investments of your life.
It should also be one of the most rewarding.
Building a house can be stressful but the help and guidance from a knowledgeable, efficient, multi-award winning and recognised builder can make your experience and decisions easier.
First and foremost, establish a budget and stick to it. Factor in your income, lifestyle, credit and savings history, employment and your ability to meet loan requirements. Speak with a mortgage broker to help you find the best deal and easiest way to secure your finance.
With a firm budget in place, it’s time to select a block of land. Remember to think about your future home when choosing land as each design requires a minimum width. Also remember that a sloping block of land in excess of 1.0 meter site fall can cost thousands of dollars in retaining walls and additional drainage. Before purchasing your land, seek advice on contour surveys, soil tests, building restrictions and covenants. All Stylemaster Homes consultants can help you source this information for you.
It’s imperative you select a builder with experience, not only in design and trends, but also in project management. A good builder will be open and have excellent communication, working with your needs and evolve their designs over time to meet changing lifestyles and trends.
With your chosen design and land, it’s time to sign the contract. There are many obligations for both the builder and the owner, which Stylemaster clearly outlines in the HIA’s Plain Language New Home Construction Contract. This contract outlines finance requirements, builder timelines and inclusions of the home.
It can take three to six weeks for plumbing and building approval depending on your council areas. Stylemaster Homes monitor all approvals to expetide their return, this process is generally outside of our control and your patience is appreciated.
Once we receive the building approval and letter of Authority to Commence Construction from your lender, it’s time to start building your home. Construction will start within four weeks with pre-construction inspections and planning carried out in the meantime.
Within three weeks of completion, you’ll be notified of the handover of your new home. The finance will be reconciled and completed with a final balance advised to your lender. Your Building Supervisor will take you through your home within two weeks of completion to advise any outstanding items awaiting completion. On the scheduled day of handover, you’ll be able to confirm all outstanding works are completed as well as the keys, remote controls and appliance and warranty documentation.
The difference between Stylemaster Homes and other builders is our quality assurance standards, leading to high attention to detail and a 6 month maintenance warranty. Should any aspects of your home need review or maintenance within six months of handover, our Maintenance Manager will meet with you, discuss your needs and coordinate the various trades to complete the works in a timely manner.
The A to Z of Building Terminology
Don’t know your architraves from your waffle pods? That’s ok because we’re here to help you understand. Below is a list of common terms used through the planning and construction of your new home.
To follow is a simple guide to assist you in understanding some of the standard building terms and “jargon” you are likely to encounter at various stages throughout construction.
ACC; Authority to Commence Construction. The stage reached when all necessary approvals have been received and we are in a position to start on site.
Access & Handling; A monetary allowance for the use of additional machinery and labour required when working on restrictive and/or difficult sites.
Alfresco; An under roof outside entertaining area.
Architrave; The moulding that seals the join between wall and window/door frame.
BA; Building Approval. The formal permit issued by the local governing council which outlines the terms and conditions to be followed throughout construction.
Barge Tile; The angular concrete tile that is used to finish off the front of a gable roof.
Batts; Insulation used in walls or ceilings
BERS; Building Energy Rating Scheme. Computer based program used to calculate the energy used to cool or heat the house.
BOS; Build Over Sewer. The application that is made to council for building within the Zone of Influence of a sewer main or easement.(See Zone of Influence)
Boundary; The official line separating the outer edges of your block of land from neighbouring properties.
Bracing; Frame strengthening and additional reinforcing and/or use of stronger materials in high wind areas.
Building Envelope; A “zone” within a parcel of land in which you are permitted to build. You cannot build outside the envelope.
Capped Upstand; A “capped-off” 100mm stormwater pipe hooked into the homes stormwater system used to catch and divert yard surface water run-off to be hooked into yard gully during landscaping.
Colour Selection; A meeting with the Colour Consultant to record all internal and external colours to accompany the orders for materials etc. for the home.
Contour Survey; A survey used to determine the site fall/slope of the block. displayed as a series of contour lines at differing levels.
Contract; The signed building agreement outlining the legal terms, conditions and obligations of the owner and the builder.
Cornice; The curved or decorative plaster moulding that covers the join between wall and ceiling sheet.
Covenant; The design requirements of a sub-division.
Cut & Fill; See Earthworks.
Downpipe; The pipe that conducts roof water via guttering to the stormwater lines.
Dutch Gable; A perpendicular triangle of roof that sits above a hip. Used as a feature.
Dwarf Wall; A wall of lesser height than a full height wall ie) one shorter than 2440mm.
Earthworks; The act of preparing a block of land to be made ready for home construction.
Easement; Area of land within a site containing a pipe (sewer/stormwater) or right of access or other right granted by a government body. Cannot be built within or over.
Eaves; The lining under a roof overhang. Also known as a soffit.
Envelope; See Building Envelope.
Façade; The frontal detail and styling of a home.
Fall; The amount of site slope on a block of land
Fascia; The colorbond metal finishing strip that covers the end of the roof trusses and sits under the guttering.
Fixing Stage; Completion of the internal fit-out of the home.
Flickmixer; A tap fitting with one handle that controls the blending and delivery of hot and cold water simultaneously.
Footprint; The outline of a home on the site/ the space it occupies.
Frame Stage; Completion of the erection of the frame.
Gable Roof; A perpendicular triangle of roof often used as a feature. May display “gable ornament” on it.
Gradient; The degree of site slope. Often used when referring to the steepness of a driveway.
Guttering; The metal channels that conduct roof water from roof to downpipes.
Handover; The stage where the home is completed and the keys are exchanged for the final payment.
Hip Roof; An angled section of roof that runs from a ridge or valley to a barge or guttering.See also Barge and Guttering.
Hob; The tiled flat area surrounding a bathtub.
HSTP; Household Sewerage Treatment Plant. Sewer holding tank with associated treatment and dispersal plumbing required on “non-mains” sewered building allotments (usually acreage).
Laminate; A veneer of coloured/ textured material covering a cupboard.
Meter Box; The metal box mounted on the external wall of a home that houses the meters, circuit breakers etc.
Mixer Taps; See Flickmixer
MPR; Multi Purpose Room
PA; Provisional Allowance. A monetary amount allowed towards a cost that is not possible to fully calculate at the time of quoting.
Penetrations; The points of entry through a slab for items such as drains etc.
Percolation Test; A test done to determine the water holding/absorbing capacity of soil. Used to design HSTP’s. See HSTP.
Picture Nook; A recess in a wall used to “frame” a picture.
Piers/Piering; Support mechanisms usually made from poured concrete under the slab of a home .Often used in filled areas. Brick Piers; Square columns of brickwork usually used for the support of a roof structure.eg) a porch.
Pitch; Refers to the degree of angle of the roof line.
Plan of Development; A sub-division where special permissions have been granted by Council for variances to standard building or siting requirements.
Pods; The polystyrene moulds over which a slab is poured. Also known as a Pod Slab or Waffle Pod.
Pointing; The cement used to set in a ridge capping. See Ridge Capping.
Post Formed; Used to describe the rounded edges of the benches of kitchens and vanity units.
Practical Completion Stage; The home has reached the stage where it is fit for the purpose it was built. It can be lived in.
Quotation; A document produced following receipt of a home order together with all site reports. Has to be approved before proceeding to contract.
Raft Slab; A traditional concrete slab which excludes the “pods”.
Relaxation; An approval by a council to vary its own requirements. Usually associated with boundary setbacks.
Ridge Capping; The angled tile cap that seals the ridge of the roof of your home.
Risers; The vertical part of a stair that gives height.
Sarking; The foils sheet used in roofs to assist with preventing water intrusion; generally in high wind areas.
Services Connection; The connection of water, power, sewer stormwater, gas and telephone between point of connection and home.
Setback; The distance a home is located from its boundary.
Sisalation; See Sarking but also used on the external walls of the frame.
Site Access; See Earthworks.(Can also refer to “all-weather” access road on acreage blocks.
Site Cut; See Earthworks.
Site Preparation; See Earthworks
Siteworks; See Earthworks
Siting; The act of placing a home on a site. The position of the home.
Skillion Roof; A roof projecting from a building that has neither gable or hip ends.
Skirting; The moulding that seals the join between floor and wall.
Slope; The change of grade on a block of land.
Soil Test; A Geotechnical survey used to determine soil type and reactivity. Ultimately used for foundation design.
Square Set Opening; An opening in a wall that has had the opening set square (not curved)
Sub Board; A secondary internally mounted housing for electrical circuit breakers. Also see Meter Box.
Transition Zone; The area immediately in front of a garage that levels out prior to entering the garage.
Treads; The horizontal part of a stair that is walked apon. Also see Risers.
Trickle Feed Water; Used where full mains pressure water is not available. Delivers limited flow and requires storage tanks.
Truncation Zone; Angled area of land across the frontage corners of a corner allotment. Driveways cannot cross this.
Two Pac; A cabinet finish that is painted in high gloss with gloss polyurethane coating.
Valley; Point at which two planes of roof meet at a declining point. It carries rainwater to the guttering.
Vinyl Wrap; A cabinet finish where coloured vinyl is heat wrapped onto moulded doors/cupboards.
Variation or VO’s; Variation to the order. Any modifications requested or required which vary from the original signed contract.
Waffle Pod; See Pods
Wall Wrap; See sisalation
Wet Areas; Bathrooms, ensuites, laundries and powderooms (Areas where running water is available)
Zero Lot; A block of land where a dwelling can be built within 200mm of the boundary.
Zone of Influence; The area surrounding a pipe where pressure can bear. Usually occurs around easements. See Easement.
How long will it take to build my home?
The time it takes to build your home depends on many factors including its design, size, site, weather, material supply, labour availability and soil classification. Your Sales Consultant will provide you with an estimated time frame, which will then be confirmed at contract stage.
Can we access the home during construction?
Due to Occupational Health and Safety laws, unaccompanied access is not permitted. We provide a number of opportunities throughout construction for you to meet with your Building Supervisor to conduct a site inspection.
Who do we talk to during construction?
Our Customer Service team will assist you with all your enquiries and coordinate onsite inspections during construction. Your Building supervisor provides weekly progress updates to the Customer Service team to assist in answering your queries.
Will my home match the quality of the Display Home?
In our eyes, there is no difference between a display home or your home. They are both Stylemaster Homes and built with stringent quality control measures and unsurpassed attention to detail. All materials and trades used to complete your home meet strict guidelines to ensure a superb finish to all our homes.
Are there any ‘hidden extras’ once I’ve signed my contract?
Our contracts and processes minimize the likelihood of any surprise charges during construction. On rare occasions, unforeseen circumstances or site conditions may necessitate additional costs being incurred and are the responsibility of the owner.
Can I make changes during Construction?
In order to maintain affordable quality homes, changes are not permitted following contract signing.
Can I arrange for my own tradespeople to ‘do some extra work’ during construction?
Due to Occupational Health and Safety laws, site access during construction is restricted to Stylemaster Homes trades only. Owner supplied tradesmen or suppliers will not be permitted until after handover.
What happens if I encounter any problems with my home following handover?
A comprehensive maintenance warranty program is provided to all owners at handover to assist with the first six months in your new home. Our Customer Services team will assist with any queries relating to warranty or maintenance.