Saturday, 2 July 2011

There are no big problems, there are just a lot of little problems

As expected our external plumbing connection was done this week and the frame was delivered. Unfortunately it did not start going up on Friday as scheduled but it is booked in to start Tuesday so we are happy with that. The other houses around us a shooting up but we are well aware that a 26 week contract means we will move slower than most.

Although building is going well, this week has been a real eye opener about the negatives of building with a smaller company and as we have really only just started our blog i feel like a little back story is necessary.

The company we are building with One Three Designer Homes has only been around for i think about 2 years run by a husband and wife. Recently they informed us that she was having a baby and they had hired a new girl to do office duties. 3 weeks later we had no contact with the person we had been dealing with for months and now I am re signing AEV's (After Exchange Variations) that we did months ago, being told that construction will be stopped as we do not have a lending authority (We are self funding this part of the build and had in fact already paid them), getting hassled by the electrician for the NMI number we gave them weeks ago and a whole heap of annoying little issues that come when you hand the running of a company to a person with 3 weeks training. It all just feels completely out of control.
We chose One Three because they designed us a house that met what we wanted in lay out, price and quality of inclusion.They do things a little differently to most builders, in that anything we chose above their standard inclusion is not paid through them but directly to the tradie/ supplier completing the job, limiting the cost of our build as an extra 20% builders margin is not tacked on. Here lies our next issue.

Earlier this week I received a nearly $10 000 bill for what the builder told us was additional Tile choices. that would need to be paid directly to the supplier. The only thing we chose outside their included range was 600 x 600 rectified floor tiles. When I asked if we could have the flooring removed from the contract I was very quickly told no. When I brought to our trainees attention that I had been chasing this quote pre contract signing, the owner gave us the option to cancel the tiles. Turns out, in the end the builders portion of the flooring cost was included in our bill and they had added one of our tiled rooms, to our carpet allowance so the actual cost is less than half of the initial bill. Not happy that it took me a bunch of phone calls and a whole lot of stress just to find this out. There seems to be no communication between the builders and their suppliers. Having to deal with 2 different people that only know about half the job is almost impossible.

I know I am being picky and I am grateful that we have had no major issues but I do not have time to go chasing up all these little things that builders should so easily be able to organise. That is why I am paying you the big bucks and not owner building.

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