Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Update on Land Settlement & Building Progress

Hi All..

It has been a while since I updated the blog. During the two months a lot of things has happen and not happen according to plan.

The land was settled on time and all documentation and settlement goes well and we are now a proud owner of a piece of Melbourne.

After the land is settled we are trying to push the bank and our broker to finalised the construction contract valuation and give us the final approval. This process took them 1 month, this is with me following up on daily basis which is a pain. After the wait the valuation comes 12k short because the bank expected improved property (including landscaping, driveway & fence) which is not and will not be provided by Carlisle.

In the end the problem is sorted (another 2 weeks wait), by borrowing above valuation amount with small LMI. This can probably be avoided by going with the big 4 banks instead of smaller one. In this case we factor the saving in interest rate and willing to take the risk dealing with smaller bank in which tend to be risk adverse and slow in valuation

During this time, I believe Carlisle has made some internal restructuring and our CLE quit the company so we have a new CLE. Fortunately the new CLE is amazing!!

We have to make some changes to the house design because we missed the developer covenant in regards to 2 minimum material to be used in front facade. We choose to go with full render in the beginning and we consider timber posts as the second material, however the developer do not accept this.

In this case we have to

1. go back to original part render / part brick

2. have the Chestnut brick with off white mortar (upgrade)

3. Have FC Sheet above garage with Jasper color
4. remove the 3rd render color and only go with two as per standard

Carlisle did gave us credits in regards to the change.

We have received the building permits & developer approval last week and now waiting on an actual start date, approximate time at this stage is to start late November / early December.

Overall, these have been a tiring two months delay and now we cannot wait until the house start building!!


  1. It’s great to hear that everything is progressing according to your plan. I assume the construction begun not long after the land settlement. And I trust things are going well since then. It seems from you last posts that you already moved in, despite the few final touches that you still needed to add in some places. Though I hope you've completely settled by now. Have a great day!

    Lois Schneider @ Ranchers’ Rise

    1. Hi lois,

      Thanks for your comment, we are settled now and still enjoying the house everyday!

  2. Hi,

    we are planning to build with Carlisle home most likely westwood too in Kingsford estate. We are extremely concern with our valuation as it came in 15k lower for our land alone. We have been hesitating whether or not to go with Carlisle home as the final figure on a 448 plot will come close to est. 530k.

    Would you mind sharing if your final valuation upon completion comes close to your land and build price? if not how much lower was your final valuation as compared to what you actually paid? We are so worried and concern with the valuation which is restricting our building process, it will be very much appreciated if yourself can share the loan process.

    Kind Regards

    1. Hi Poe,

      when we bought the land, we have no problem getting the loan for it. Can you find out why it was undervalued? did you get it from the developer or private? do you deal directly with the bank or with a broker?

      When we go to the building loan, we did have a valuation problem (under 12k) because the bank include the cost of landscaping, fencing and driveway to bring the house to the "marketable value" however there are no problem in regards to the house itself. In the end we have to chip in another 12k to the deposit to get the loan.

    2. Hi,

      Thanks for replying, we got the land directly from Peet, we have no problem getting the loan and the document is now with me for signing just that the land itself was 15k undervalued and we went with loan studio. Our main problem is we are not in Australia thus only NAB accepts foreign income.

      Another issue with building in Kingsford with Carlisle is that they don't do fix site cost, not sure how much your site cost came to? We budgeted 15k and am not sure if its enough.

      Not sure if you mind sharing the cost of your driveway and concrete pathway surrounding your house and the contacts for both the independent inspector and the driveway vendor.

      Last but not least, I really appreciate your blog as it was very detailed and does helps answer alot of query I had on building. It must have been a great experience building your beautiful house.


    3. Hi Poe,

      The valuation of the land should not have any effect from your foreign income. It should be the same for everyone. Would you think that the land was overpriced?

      If i were you, I would tell Peet that the their land was undervalued they might be able to get you a better deal. Have you compare the price of the land with other land around point cook with the same size?

      Carlisle and most of other builder will not fix site cost until tender or until they got the final soil and site inspection. Mine was quoted at 20k and come back at 17k

      The driveway and concrete path around the house was 8k. Independent inspector is "New Home Inspection" and driveway was with "PERI Construction"

      May I ask are you building for yourself or is it an investment property?

    4. Hi Rudy,

      What I meant by foreign income is only NAB will loan based on that and NAB does not allow revaluation (based on the broker). I did compare with Saratoga and Address, which is pretty similar and Address is definitely higher.

      This house will be for our own stay and we have more or less settled with Carlisle Indiana 29 instead of the Weswood.

      I heard that the valuers will value based on the recent transacted houses which seems to be only around the range of 480 - 500k, if based on this, I will be about 50k off thus it is really worrying now.

  3. Hi Rudy,

    We receive our tender yesterday and was surprise that the slab cost came up to 32k! We had been quoted the below:

    1. 460mm high "E" Class Waffle Raft slab in lieu to "M" class - 13.2k
    2. 450mm diameter bored concrete piers to the Waffle Raft slab - 16.5k
    3. Deepend edge beams - 2.25k

    would like to check if you had any of the above slab upgrades? The above was really unexpected, it would be helpful if you can share your experiences with regards to slab.

    Kind regards

    1. Hi Poe,

      That some very expensive site cost!

      It is actually a bit weird since we are building in the same estate so our soil condition should be very close "P" soil, ask Carlisle to give you a copy of the soil test and also ask why the upgrade is needed especially the concrete piers?

      I would do some online research as well in regards to the concrete piers it might have something to do with the soil on your land.

      My slab was upgraded to 385mm High "H" Class Waffle Raft Slab in lieu to standard "M" Class - 15k

      Also in your side cost there should be cost for:

      1. Telstra Smart Community wiring (Kingsford requirement) (1k)
      2. 22.5 degree roof pitch instead of the normal 20 degree (Kingsford requirement) (600)
      3. Provision for council cost (2k)

      my total side cost was just above 20k with 15k related to slab.

    2. Hi Rudy,

      Thanks for the advice, I thought so too that the site cost should not be too much out as we are building in the same estate. Will get the soil test repot and have a look and clarify with Carlisle on the upgrade.



  4. It’s amazing how time flies, no? This land settlement progress feels like yesterday, and now your first home is finished and furnished. Congratulations on that, by the way! Seeing how you impeccably planned everything about the construction progress, it’s no surprise that the house turned out stunning. Good job!

    Oliver Matthews @ Flower & Fendler

  5. Superbly written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a far better place..