I'm back!

Posted by Cath Swan |

After our move I got locked out of my blogger account thanks to an email address change, anyhoo I'm back with some new little updates to our home!

Everything inside our home is going great, although we still have towel racks, toilet roll holders & wall pictures to put up. We're a little apprehensive about stabbing the wall just for our enjoyment! But we will get there!

Inside we also finally got our blinds up. We have white wooden blinds at the front and corner of the house, and white block out roller blinds in all the kids rooms and other windows at the back and side of the house.

Outside things are slowly, very slowly taking shape.

We have a side fence now, and fill has been added to level out the back/side yard. Although we still think we need another load of topsoil fill to make the entire yard at the same level. That will happen in the next few weeks. We also have gates on both sides of the house. It's so nice to have a backyard fenced and have our privacy back! The bricked area is to keep the dog out of the dirt, and basically marks out where our alfresco deck will be.

The driveway is still yet to come, due to other needs and Christmas we have had to put that back until maybe Feb, but are still hoping that will happen then and we can finally park our cars in the garage.

So there is much still to do, and you can tell walking around our estate which homes are owner lived in or rented. The rental yards are all finished, and the home owners yards are all dirt, so we take comfort in our patch of dirt, cause it's all OURS!!


Home Sweet Home!

Posted by Cath Swan |

So, we are finally in our new home!!

We are absolutely ecstatic and loving everything about our home and the area we live in.

We still have a lot of landscaping to start on, boxes still to unpack, not to mention putting pictures up and toilet roll holders and towel racks. It is still early days.

In the next couple of weeks we will see our final fence go up, fill loaded into the back yard, all our blinds will go up and hopefully before Christmas our driveway will go in!

Lots more updates and photos in the following blogs, but I will give you a taste of our house as it is presently!! Thanks for reading!


Settlement day!!!

Posted by Cath Swan |

Well this is just a short post, cause we're right in the middle of moving.... but yes we have settled and the house is ours!!

We are currently moving in amidst painting some feature walls. We had originally put feature walls into the budget for the painters to do, but realised we could save ourselves $1500 doing the painting ourselves! Something we wouldn't have attempted unless we had painted quite a few houses previously.

In the family room we have put a beautiful caramel colour, and in the next couple days we will add a chocolate colour to the rumpus room, which will blend in with our kitchen cupboards. The caramel walls will also go with the caramel splashback in the kitchen.

Our watertank was delivered and connected last week, to keep with our 5 star rating required in the Laurimar Estate.

There is still last minute things to be connected and installed so I will update again later in the week with photos etc.


Final inspection day!!

Posted by Cath Swan |

We had our final appointment with the builder today. Yesterday our house passed inspection from the building inspector, and today we signed off on our house with just a few paint touch ups etc.

The Certificate of Occupancy will now be sent to us from Porter Davis, which we will then send to the bank. The bank then has 5-7 working days to pay Porter Davis and then Settlement happens and we get the keys!!

This will hopefully happen in about 2 weeks. Still a mind-numbingly long wait when we're this close, but really great that it's not too much longer.

Above is with our final render coat finished and all but the left down pipe to be painted. We love the final colour of the render with the white moulding. We're very happy with the final look of the house, which you really don't know if you got right until you see the finished product. :)



Posted by Cath Swan |

Well this week has been a roller-coaster of emotion. The house is so nearly finished we could live there. But there are these annoying last things needed like 'plumbing' etc, that are stopping us from finalising things.

We were told yesterday by our Building Manager that because tradies aren't turning up to jobs, that it would be at least another 4 weeks until we could look at moving into the house. This threw everything out of whack and messed up our end date for our current rental, not to mention trying to plan time off work, trucks and finalising appointments.

We were both so frustrated yesterday and there was nothing we could do about it! After a couple of people's recommendations, today we started to rattle a few cages. We pressed with our Building Manager about our need to finish the house by the end date we gave notice on our rental. And after lots of back and forth, he is going to try and push it thru by the beginning of November. So we'll see if this happens.

This Friday we have the final inspection, and we're hoping the bank can then jump to it and everything will finalise within a couple of weeks.

Fortunately today, we went to look thru the windows of the house, and our Building Manager turned up. We were able to look through the house.

The final coat on the front doors was done,
looking so good. We were able to walk on our carpet, and experience the upgraded underlay to improve the life of our carpet! I recommend if you can afford to get the highest quality underlay then do it, its very nice to walk on; and it's meant to lengthen the life and durability of your carpet.

They have also taken away the wire bin and toilet, so the front of our house is looking great! In the next couple of days the render will be finished. Today they had painted the moulding on top of the render, and then they will finish the render with the last coat.

So it's looking great, and if our Building Manager can just get the tradies to return we will be enjoying our home very soon!!



Posted by Cath Swan |

Sorry folks, no photos to update.

We went out today and everything was locked up, so couldn't get any photos. But the carpet is all in and finished. All the basins and kitchen sink are in. The taps and mixers are still to be put in.

The final inspection is meant to be tomorrow and we haven't heard any different, but we are thinking there are still the above things, plus cleaning and finishing render, painting door and lights on the outside still to be finished. Not to mention patching holes in walls and paint touch ups from careless tradies. So we won't be surprised if they put that off until next week.

We are very happy to be towards the end, but we think there will still be a couple of weeks before we hold those wonderful house keys in our hands.


Testing patience....

Posted by Cath Swan |

Well after the last post where we were expecting to be moving in the next couple of weeks, we found out that Porter Davis had actually sent us the wrong email. So after giving notice on our current rental for a month ahead, we were a little concerned to find out the email sent to us was actually for someone else! Not exceedingly professional.

Thankfully, our final inspection date is scheduled for between the 15-19th October, settlement will then be in the next two or so weeks. We were informed that 'everything' has to be finished by the final inspection date, after that it's just getting final payment from the bank and any last minute fix up jobs. So we are now expecting to be in around the beginning of November.

Today our front doors are finally on with first coat of paint. The moulding on top of the render has gone on, all still to be painted but looks great.

They have done a whole house clean in preparation for putting the carpet down, so floors are clean, and all the windows were crystal clear.

We are now counting down the days!!


Nearly there!

Posted by Cath Swan |

We got an email on Thursday to say that the 'Practical completion' Inspection would be on Friday just gone. It then continued to say that 'Settlement' would be a week or two after that.

We thought with all the things needing finishing it would still be another month, but actually when you look around there is not that much to be finished!

The shower screens have both been put on and look great. The bathrooms just need the toilets and bath and tap fittings etc put on.

All the heating and cooling is in including the controls. We have evaporative cooling which was part of our 'extras' deal, just in time for summer! So nearly all the rooms have 2 vents in the ceiling, one for heat and one for cooling.

Today we had to look threw windows as everything was locked up. All the lights and power points are in, and the Telstra smart wiring has been started. Half our lights are down-lights and the others are batons, which we will have to get light shades for.

We are now in full blown packing mode, so posts may be a little sparse until after we move which at this stage will be in 2-3 weeks.


Getting closer!

Posted by Cath Swan |

Well today was very exciting.

We have just had the Retaining wall finished, which looks fantastic, and is exactly what we wanted.

The next faze will be to add fill to the wall and build the fence, which is stage two and
will probably happen after we move in.

I was also able to get some inside
shots of the new tiles, and was very excited to find they have built all the shelves for all the cupboards.

Including all the bedroom cupboards, linen, and pantry. They all seem to be
painted as well, and look amazing.

We are so happy with the floor tiles and the colour fits perfectly with the
wall colour and cupboards.

We're really starting to get excited now. We don't have a hand-over date yet but hopefully in the next week we'll know a final date!


Tiles & Garage door!

Posted by Cath Swan |

We came home early yesterday from our holiday because we all came down with colds and it was raining all week at the beach. And it was just as well, because last night the builder called us to say they were starting the tiling today and wanted us to check all the tiles before they got too far.

So this morning we went out to meet the tiler and builder and they had half tiled the family room when we got there. It is looking great so far, and all the tiles are the ones we chose.

We didn't realise that the tiles for the shower had the choice to go vertical or horizontal. Something they didn't ask us at our tile appointment. So on the spot we had to decide which way we wanted the wall tiles to go. We chose vertical for the wall tiles in the showers.

The other thing was we didn't realise the tiles for the side and top of the bath would be the same as the floor tiles. They did give us the option to change that today on the spot, but we decided to go with the same floor tiles on and around the bath. Apparently the norm for baths is to go with the same tile as the floor.
According to our tiler it should all be finished by this Saturday, this includes all the tiles in the bathrooms and laundry as well.

Sometime today the splashback for the kitchen went in too, I hope to have photos of that next time.

We were very excited to see that the garage door had been installed. Garage doors in our estate have to be the sectional doors, no roller door types. The colour is Ironstone and is the same colour as the roof and gutters. We were wondering if the colour was going to be too much, but I think when the render is finally finished and the doors are on it will all look really good.


Moving forward.....

Posted by Cath Swan |

Quick post tonight as we're going away for a week holiday tomorrow.

Painting on all walls and ceilings and doors is now finished. The paint work in my humble opinion is quality. The finishes on all the room and cupboard doors is a beautiful glossy white. We're very happy with the finished painting. At a later date we will do some feature walls.

All the tiles have been delivered and look great, I can't wait to see them finished.

Our gorgeous front doors have been
delivered and will be painted a deep red called 'Manor Red', I had to fight for the style and colour so I'm really looking forward to seeing them up and finished.

And finally they have started preparing both the shower bases with waterproofing ready for the tiling on the shower floor and walls.

We are hoping that most of the tiling will be nearly finished when we return from our quick holiday in a week. We are hoping to be refreshed and ready for the big move and all that comes with our new house!


Painting starts

Posted by Cath Swan |

It has been a slow couple of weeks, not much happening. Everyone tells me this is what happens, they go very fast getting the outside up and then everything goes slow on the inside... I'm sure there's some deep insight in that thought somewhere!

Anyway, yesterday we had a look and they have started painting! The floor had been all cleaned in prep, all mud out. And the first coat has gone on all through the house, including the ceilings.
And from what we can work out, they actually have the paint colours correct. Paint colour is a latte type colour with a white trim around the windows and door frames. We were going to get all our feature walls done, but have cancelled that to save some money. We will do some features at a later time.

The other thing finished is the back fence next door. We went out earlier in the week to find they had put in full length fence posts for the whole length of our yard, and as we still need to build a retaining wall there and didn't want a full fence blocking our view we had to move quickly to get it stopped.

Thankfully they were happy to take the full height fence to just pass their house, and once the retaining wall is built we will get a half height fence built on top and hopefully keep our view!!


Moving slowly....

Posted by Cath Swan |

Well things are happening painfully slowly!!

Everything has gone so fast since we started that we weren't expecting a couple of weeks of barely anything happening. My hope of being in early is slightly fading, but you never know it could still be beginning of October.

Porter Davis have until the middle of October to handover before the promised 20 week build is up and they have to start paying our rent!

When we visited on Saturday a couple of things had been finished. The Bench tops have all been installed with our lovely Caesar stone. This has been put in the kitchen and all the bathrooms.
They have also nearly finished all the eaves.

Apparently this week the painting starts, we will await to see if this goes ahead!! Still thinking we could be in in a month!!


Render undercoat

Posted by Cath Swan |

We knew the rendering would be most likely started this week, so when we drove up today there it was. I stress that what you're seeing is the 'undercoat', as it looks a little grey at the moment! The painted colour will be a more latte colour and will have white moulding at the top of it.

We were a little unsure of how it makes the house look, gives it a totally different look but I think it will grow on us especially when it's finished.

So I will update with more photos when they add the paint colour to the render.


Coming along.....

Posted by Cath Swan |

This week the house is coasting along nicely.
They have installed all the cupboards and island bench for the kitchen. All the cabinets and drawers are in, and the kitchen sink has been delivered.

Not sure when the Caesar stone benches will arrive, but that and the appliances will finish off the kitchen.

The ensuite cupboards have been installed, notice they are also the same wood as the kitchen cupboards. We've kept the same look flowing through the house, with similar colours throughout.

This week the render will start on the front of the house, and the tiler will begin.

My husband finally met our Building Manager on Friday; he said they were flying along well. The Building Inspector came to survey the house and brickwork etc; apparently he was impressed with the quality of the house and immaculate brickwork and gave the big thumbs up!

The incorrect mortar colour has still been an issue. We have noticed that since the mortar has dried it looks a lot more grey which is unfortunate, but Porter Davis have agreed (after some haggling), to compensate us for their mistake. So we should be able to maybe get our driveway done at their expense!

The render will go from halfway up the window (in the picture above), down to the bottom, and then cover most of the portico.

Our Building Manager also informed us that because they are moving so quickly we could be in sooner than first thought. Our 20 week build guarantee from Porter Davis, put us as being in by mid October. It's now looking like we could be in around the end of September. That gives us a month! So today we started packing. Very exciting!!


Lockup official!!

Posted by Cath Swan |

The house is officially at lockup!

Lots of little things finished around the house this week.

The kitchen is taking shape with the cabinets finished on the wall, the long island bench is sitting ready to be finished.

The Alfresco poles have been all finished now. We will be building a retaining wall along the footpath and getting fill to give us more space around the alfresco area. We will then build a fence behind it to give us privacy.

Below is our 'unpainted' double doors for our bedroom which are also in the theatre room. All our other doors in the house are single white panelled doors. Nice!

We are still yet to hear back from Porter Davis about the mortar colour mistake, hopefully this week something will be remedied!


Big week!

Posted by Cath Swan |

Well, we have had quite the big week as far as the house goes!

Yesterday morning we got a call from our Building Manager to tell us that the brickie had signed off on his brick work last night as it was all finished, and discovered that we had upgraded to 'off-white' mortar!! He
used the standard uncoloured mortar, which is a grey colour.

If you remember a few weeks ago when they first started the brick laying, I commented that I wondered if the mortar colour was right. The first time I saw it, I said to hubby - "The mortar colour is wrong!" He calmed me that it was just wet and appeared darker but it would lighten up. Well trust women's intuition, cause I was right!!

So because we paid to have the mortar colour upgraded, and they've done the entire house in a lovely 'grey'; we are waiting to hear from Porter Davis about what they will compensate us for.

Our quick trip out this arvo brought great excitement. They have started putting all the cabinets into the house. Laundry is all in, the ensuite is half in and bathroom all in. They have also put in half of the kitchen cabinets! Amazing!

They have added all the skirting boards throughout the house, and had put in all our internal doors. The difference this makes is amazing, everything looks very different.

It is beginning to feel a lot like our home, and like we are actually going to move into our own home very soon!

Everything is happening very quickly!!


Bricks done!

Posted by Cath Swan |

Greetings!! Busyness has overtaken me, so I haven't had a chance to update. But here is yesterdays offering.

We were very excited to see that they had almost totally finished all the bricks, all the way around the house. And it wasn't until my husband pointed out the portico pole finished that I realised they had finished the whole portico, (that is front entrance for you newbies)!
We now await to see what the render to the front post and bottom half of the front will look like.

Inside they have finished all the cornice for the ceiling, and
finished plastering all the ceiling areas. Including the doorway into the rumpus area, which is meant to actually be a 'doorway'! So tomorrow my husband will have to get the building manager to make sure that it is turned into a door frame.

They seem to be following the original plans and not the revised ones that we made, so we'll have to see why that keeps happening.

Other than a few niggly problems, everything is coming along very nicely!



Posted by Cath Swan |

We've had a busy weekend so we hadn't had time to get out to the house until this afternoon.

I was hoping to see the bricks finished and no green insulation in sight. Well they had bricked further around and finished the back of the house completely, but still haven't finished the front and side.

So I ventured inside to see any changes, and noticed the front temporary doors had blown open and all the rain was getting in the house, so I fixed the bricks against the doors so no rain could get in. I turned around and was shocked by what I saw.

The builder had called Jose on Friday to tell him the plasterers would be starting sometime in this next week, so we were waiting to see the next stage started.

Well to my shock, the plasterers had not only started but nearly finished. All the walls are up, all the ceilings are done, and all that's left to do is the cornice and the door frames.

They must have worked hard since last Wednesday, because it wasn't done before then.

It totally changes the look of the house and makes everything seem real. Instead of looking through walls, we now have rooms.

In the photo to the right, is our foyer with an extra 300mm height added to the already high ceilings through-out the house. It makes the whole house feel very spacious!

A very exciting stage to get to.