New Home Builder, House and Land Packages in Melbourne - Berstan Homes Blog

New Home Buyers Blog

Major builder problems

Tuesday, August 05, 2014
Speaking to a client of mine the other day and they have a friend that built with a major Perth based building company. I was amazed to hear the home was built and the builder refused to do the driveway and alfresco concreting works.  The builder's representative stated that the building company only do driveway and alfresco concreting works on their display homes. So the owner was left to find and organise their own concreting contractors to complete their home. 
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What is the standard R rating for new home builds

Friday, August 01, 2014
The standard R rating on new home builds is a 6 star rating making the home more energy efficient than earlier built homes pre energy rating changes.  The R rating is achieved by using a combination of building materials and items such as insulation, solar hot water units, double glazing, home orientation, rain water tanks with plumbing to toilets and laundry just to name a few that could be used in your new home build.
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Laminate bench tops

Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Over the years the old laminate kitchen bench tops haven't changed much. Of late the styles and designs have changed significantly to the point that I had some clients look through one of our displays last week that thought the laminate tops were stone!  The old laminate has gone and the new is taking over, very impressive.   
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Buying a knock down rebuild site

Thursday, July 24, 2014
What to look for when buying a knock down rebuild site costs: The construction of two double storey homes around 25 square each. The cost of the two homes would be around $650 to $700k including subdivision, surveying, design, demolition, planning, engineering, soil testing and all fees from start to finish. Some areas you should be looking at are Doncaster, Blackburn, Vermont, Donvale, Ringwood, Reservoir is also worth a look.  Size of land would need to be minimum 750m/2 plus.
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Organised crime on building sites

Monday, July 21, 2014
In the past 6 months we have experienced an escalation in theft from our projects. Listed thefts across all our projects: Air conditioning units that were already installed Hot water system already installed Solar panels mounted on the roof Solid timber feature door already hung Doors 2 hours after delivery Aluminium sliding doors already installed Steel lintels Bags of cement and lime 2 x pallets of bricks House lot of tiles Door frames already installed Aluminium windows Pack of skirting
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Organised crime on building sites

Monday, July 21, 2014
In the past 6 months we have experienced an escalation in theft from our projects. Listed thefts across all our projects: Air conditioning units that were already installed Hot water system already installed Solar panels mounted on the roof Solid timber feature door already hung Doors 2 hours after delivery Aluminium sliding doors already installed Steel lintels Bags of cement and lime 2 x pallets of bricks House lot of tiles Door frames already installed Aluminium windows Pack of skirting
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How solar hot water systems work?

Thursday, July 17, 2014
First cold water is pumped through the roof panels, and is heated by the sun. The heated water then returns to the tank, and is stored for later use.  At night (or especially on cold days) the gas or electric booster makes sure the water is heated to a usable temperature. 
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Measuring a LG Flat screen TV

Thursday, July 17, 2014
My old tube TV eventually gave up on Monday, so off we went to Harvey Norman, JB Hi Fi and The Good Guys to have a look at what was on offer.  We found a great selection at all stores, with the The Good Guys being the best in price. We purchased a 60 inch and we went home to install the new TV. I set up the bracket up on the wall and allowed for the 60 inch with
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Measuring a LG Flat screen TV

Thursday, July 17, 2014
My old tube TV eventually gave up on Monday, so off we went to Harvey Norman, JB Hi Fi and The Good Guys to have a look at what was on offer.  We found a great selection at all stores, with the The Good Guys being the best in price. We purchased a 60 inch and we went home to install the new TV. I set up the bracket up on the wall and allowed for the 60 inch with
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New home design can save you money

Thursday, July 17, 2014
Orientation is often overlooked by many home designers and it should be one of the main points to design.  Simply it can save you on your energy costs due to better access for the sun to warm your home and using the elements to your new homes advantage is better for the environment.
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Beware of cheap solar panels

Wednesday, July 16, 2014
I have heard several complaints from suppliers lately about cheap imported solar panels, so be careful and make sure you ask your new home builder to provide the name of the manufacturer. I only use Chromagen solar & energy solutions on my projects, they were established in 1962 and a trusted name in the new home building market.
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Land buying tips

Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Always consult with your builder before you buy land. They have the experience and knowledge to help you determine if the land is suitable for your requirements.  Most builders would offer this service for free or just a small fee to cover their time. At Berstan Homes we don't charge any fees and work together with you for the best outcome for you not the land agent. Many clients have come to me over the years and have already bought
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Stone bench tops

Wednesday, July 16, 2014
I have noticed over the years that the cost of stone bench tops has reduced significantly to the point where it is now half of what it used to be.  Reason being nearly every home builder it is a standard inclusion to supply stone bench tops to the kitchen bench tops.  It's the old supply and demand rule in manufacturing if you can produce more you can reduce cost. This has brought the cost down to the average kitchen to $2,500 including
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New home appliance savings

Saturday, July 12, 2014
Most people are looking for a good deal and are searching for ways to save money. Several of my budget minded clients have asked the question how to upgrade their kitchen appliances? My answer is simple, go to the auction houses they have great discounts and have most items have warranties.  The two auction houses I recommend are the Folwes auction group and Greys auctions. With both companies you can get an itemized list of all the items on sale
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Why own a dog

Friday, July 11, 2014
There are so many reasons for owing a dog. Companionship Guardianship Ask for nothing You and your family are the centre of their world Better hearing than you and know when somebody is at your front door before they ring the bell. Walking the dog is not only good for them, but healthy for you as well. Easy care depending on which type of dog, chosen dogs with long coats require more attention then dogs with short coats. Size of
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New home builds should have fly screens

Thursday, July 10, 2014
New homes should come standard with fly screens with the increase of insect activity and the ease of infection spread by airborne insects.  The cost is minimal and approximately $300 for an 18 square home. Some of the diseases that can be spread by insects in Victoria are Ross river virus, Dengue fever, Barmah forest virus and Australian Arboencephalitis are the main diseases. It's just not worth taking the risk with your family, insist your new home has fly screens
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Energy savings with heating and cooling in new home builds

Wednesday, July 09, 2014
We are currently using a Brivis gas add on system that works both heating and cooling. The system uses the same ductwork and only uses electricity for the fans and the cost savings are significant. The system offers refrigerated air conditioning and is very efficient. 
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Sustainable flooring

Friday, July 04, 2014
Many questions I get about flooring and sustainable options. Bamboo flooring is the stick out option being produced from plantation Bamboo and extremely hard wearing. The Bamboo is harvested every 5 years unlike many other timber veneer products requiring growth of 15 years plus. Bamboo also comes in many colours and styles. The latest is a matt finish which has been stressed and is a stunning product worthy of consideration in a new home build. 
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Small backyard in new build homes

Thursday, July 03, 2014
Many new estates have little allowance for large back yards; so many new homes have small yards to work with. Just because the area is small would require the gardener the need to think outside the square by using vertical gardens and stands which will help to create your own personal gardening adventure.
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Site manager’s workloads out of control

Friday, June 27, 2014
A site manager friend came to me the other day complaining about workload, he works for one of the major new home building companies. What he said alarmed me; he was in charge of 32 sites and was not coping well. Little wonder he was under pressure a sustainable level of sites in my opinion would be around 15 sites. It is little wonder the burn out rate for the larger new home building companies is so high.
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Many new home builds seem to have storage problems

Friday, June 27, 2014
I have been passed many homes of late and have noticed the cars are not in the garage where they belong due to the garage being filled up with everything but the kitchen sink. At design stage many of these issues could be solved by maybe extending the garage length and building more cupboards.
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Tony & Danielle P

Friday, June 27, 2014
You guys did a great job, the house looks very good, we are pleased thank you Mark and Paul. All the best Tony & Danielle P. Wallan
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Estate land savings

Thursday, June 26, 2014
When looking to purchase a piece of land for your new home build, there are many factors to take into account, but one major item is often overlooked or not known about. Builders because of their relationships with land estate and agents will most cases receive a better pricing outcome than an individual when it comes to purchasing land. Reason being the builder is a major supplier of leads to the estate and for this they are offered land at
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Living and investing on the same piece of land

Tuesday, June 24, 2014
I currently have several clients we are building new homes for on their existing home sites. This is a great way of releasing the full potential in your land. The land cost in most cases is much higher than the new home build cost. Many clients sell one of the new homes off to cover the new build cost and the remaining homes are rented out creating a passive income more years to come.
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Build an investment in your backyard

Thursday, June 19, 2014
With the pressure on the retirement age being lifted many people are looking into building a new home in their backyard. This is a great idea with no cost for land and a rental income coming in relieves the pressure when retirement is coming up. For as little as $180k you can have an investment property generating an income for you. Another option could be to sell the new home and land off, still leaving you in your home.
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Beware of cheap tiles

Wednesday, June 18, 2014
A client of mine the other day purchased their own tiles to save on the build cost only to find out the tiles where seconds at best. Which created a problem with the tiles being unusable and ultimately cost the home owner more for the tiles having to be replaced.
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Laminate flooring with signs of cupping

Friday, June 13, 2014
Unfortunately once cupping occurs in laminate flooring, the flooring will need to be replaced. This is caused by water either by too much used when cleaning or spillage. I have had a few jobs where this has happened and we have tried to dry the area out with the use of heaters only to find the moisture was being retained under the flooring. When the flooring is laid the installers use a polythene barrier between the concrete and the boards
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Buying a new home build site

Friday, June 13, 2014
I was asked the other day to provide a quote for a new home build in Mernda. I sent an email to the land agent requesting a copy of the current engineering for the civil works. After looking over the engineering I found the site to have 2.3 metres of fill over it. This created an extra site cost which could have been avoided if the client would have asked a new home builder for advice prior to the purchase.
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New home builder finds floater and costs owner $18k

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
A client’s friend called me a couple of days ago and asked me what a floater was? A floater is a large or small rock that has been found while excavating the site and can cause great expense to the new home owner via removal of the floater (rock) and in some cases filling the remaining hole with concrete.
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New home build site classification

Wednesday, June 11, 2014
I have been asked many times about site classes. This is an interesting topic and one that is really important when it comes to site costs. Best soil class is A class and the worst is P class.
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