Day 42: Framing

22 12 2012

Today the fabulous framers were hard at work resulting in half of the ground floor frame going up. We got butterflies when we went to the block. Seeing the house gaining height and the rooms taking shape makes it finally start to feel like our home. While there is a long way to go, all our planning and waiting is paying off. We also realised that the house is going to be bloody big!!! This will be a welcome relief from the current shoe box scenario that we have been living in for the last 12 months. The plan is for the ground floor frame to be complete prior to Christmas. Going by the amount of progress made yesterday we still think this may actaully happen, fingers crossed.

The side that has been put up is the left of the building (looking from the front) which contains the study, family and rumpus rooms as well as the garage.


View from the front sidewalk


View from the side from the neighbour’s garden – you can see the door from the garage into the house.


Day 42: Frame start

20 12 2012

timberframeWe got a phone call from our Site Manager, Simon this morning to give us an update.  Today marked the start of the frame stage and with some luck we could have the first floor frame done before Christmas.  That would be a nice Christmas present.

The good thing about this time of year is the nice weather for the builders to work in, however, I have noticed that since we had a site start there has been a bit more rain – that’s Melbourne for you.

We have also paid the base stage invoice via internet transfer –  yuck.

Prior to the start of framing the entire slab was marked up with the locations of the wall.  We had lots of fun walking in out of the imaginary rooms.  Here’s a photo of the markings near the dining room.


In the next photo you can see the crushed rock laid out across the site.  It’s so much better walking around on the crushed rock than the dirt.  We also had lots of wood (timber) delivered.  The block is now looking more like a construction site.


We have lots of timber

In the below picture you can see the termite protection that has been provided to our house – this is the blue sheet around the edges of the slab.  Building Regulations require all new houses built within areas designated by municipal councils as likely to be subject to termite infestation, to have some form of management against termite attack.  We happen to live in an area where the council requires the house to be protected by termite infestation.  For more information, see the Building Commission Termite Control fact sheet.


The framers have started to outline the wall locations with timber….


Our cyclone fence is now standing upright…



Rubbish cage


Day 40: Slab pour

18 12 2012

Today we had the concrete slab poured. Woohoo, so exciting!!!!! It looks great.  Here’s to reaching this first major stage in the construction process and just before Christmas.  It took a bloody long time to get going but we feel as though we are motoring along now, its a great feeling.

We were laughing this afternoon – even before the slab has had a chance to dry we received our first major invoice for the completion of the base stage.  The amount is due 7 days from now which falls on 25 December – Merry Christmas!!

The slab looks big.  According to our plans the site area is 708 sqm and the building area is 265 sqm, so the site coverage of the slab is about 38%.  So whilst it doesn’t look like it, we do have a lot of land.  The slab now gives us a clearer picture of how the house fits in with the land and we are now contemplating what we need to do for landscaping.


Our freshly poured slab

You can clearly see the step down to the garage….


View from the front near the garage

Here’s a photo from the rear.  From furthest to nearest on the left ground floor is the sitting room, powder room, laundry, kitchen and dining room.  On the right is the study, family room and rumpus.


View from the rear

We took the opportunity to engrave our names into the slab….


Making a mark on our slab


Day 37: Slab preparation complete

15 12 2012


Its slab time!!!! Yes, that’s right everything is ready and waiting for the slab pour which will hopefully take place tomorrow. We had a lot of fun looking at all the prep work for the slab and working out which room would be were. We also realised just how bloody big our house is going to be and how much work we will have to do to the backyard so we can make the space functional for the kids (and us). That said, we are sooooo excited to be at this point. We can’t believe how quick things move now that the whole process is underway. All the boxing for the slab was done in one day – phew!!!

We tossed a gold coin into the slab area for good luck, lets hope we have good weather tomorrow and can show you some new pics of our slab.


View from the rear of the block.  The house area looks huge!!

Closeup of the slab area shows polystyrene (Expanded Polystyrene to be precise) used for the waffle pods.  The polystyrene is a great insulator, reducing heat transfer through the floor.


Close up of the waffle pods from the front


Outdoor room

The following image shows the main plumbing pipes into the ground floor of the house.  The close ones seem to be the ground floor powder room and laundry.  The one further back in the photo more towards the centre is the kitchen island bench.


When we arrived at the site, our front fence had a serious lean on it and had to be braced up by some wood.  The falling fence destroyed our letterbox.  We had to go to Bunnings and spent $21 to get a replacement.


Our cyclone fence needs fixing

Our recycling bin looks a bit squashed from the recent site works.  Now who is going to replace this?


Our poor bin 😦


A gold coin for good luck


Day 32: We have been pegged

10 12 2012

Drove past the block after work today and saw the property pegged to outline the slab position.  Other than that no other visible progress.



Day 30 – Retaining walls complete, power pole, concrete piers and plumbing

8 12 2012

Our retaining walls are now done – they were done by 30 Nov and only took 3 days of work. You can see from the photo that the wall on the left hand side is hard against the boundary.  However, the one on the right is away from the fence to cater for the easement.



We also noticed some drains (?) connected to pipes coming from behind the retaining wall.  I assume these are the ag pipe to aid the removal of waste water and thus reduce the pressure placed on the wall.  If drainage is not placed at the base of the wall there is a strong possibility that the wall can be jeopardised and weaken the wall structure and a “blow out” can occur resulting in the wall being buckled or even worst knocked over .


Other work that has been done include the drilling and pouring of the concrete piers to help stablise the slab to stop the house shifting from its intended position.


A power pole has been erected with a meter box which will be hooked up to our underground power pit that we organised back in January.  Power will be required for the frame stage.  It seems the plumbing is also done – most of the pipes sticking up from the ground are within the house/slab boundary.


We spoke to our Site Manager during the week and he expects that the boxing of the slab base and the pour should happen next week.