Sunday, March 6, 2011


The final contract is signed!! We went over the plans and contract with a fine tooth comb before initialling and signing in the relevant places, all in all it took around two and a half hours of checking and scribbling. There were a couple of mistakes but nothing that couldn't be rectified like the gym/garage area was still showing a store room with tiled floor and the wardrobe doors were down as vinyl and not mirrored. We also decided we would like to add a set of doors between the family room and hallway so this area can be closed off when we have the air con on rather than trying to cool and heat such a massive space. Easy to draw on the plan but it means revised drawings will need to be issued so I hope we don't get charged admin and redrawing fees as it will make the doors a very expensive addition!

At final contract you get more detailed plans and drawings and even cabinetry designs for kitchen, laundry, bathrooms etc, seeing them really starts to bring the house alive in our imagination. Sandy was very pleased to see that they had the kitchen drawn exactly as requested, it looks really smart and will have heaps of storage. Finally it's starting to dawn on us that this house is huge, so much for our original plans of down sizing!

Metricon ask for a 5% deposit plus evidence of your ability to pay like a letter of finance from your lender. We had neither of these as until the house in finalised we can't set up the building loan, however our SC explained that it was OK just to sign a form explaining we were awaiting settlement of the house prior to finance, cool another signature so that part was easy. For the deposit we had two choices either pay nothing today and Metricon will just accept the contract but do nothing with it until the cash appears or put down another $2,500 and the process will keep moving forward as we are showing a commitment. No brainer, pay the $2,500 and keep the build process moving. The next stage is the plans will go to Council for building approval and knowing Council this could take some time and we don't want to be living in the studio apartment for any longer than we need to.

Metricon will contact us soon to organise colour selections and electrical appointment, how exciting.

OK so how is the budget looking? I have to say not bad at all, we are getting really good at guessing how much things cost so it didn't come as a surprise to see that we have now spent $85K over the base price. We have already factored in the brick and roof tile selections, air con, upgraded stairs and lots of additional doors, floor to ceiling tiles in bathroom, en suite and powder room and brick infills over all ground floor windows and garage.
For those of you agonising over whether to go for brick infills it cost us an extra $1,800 which we felt was good value when you consider how big the house is and how much smarter it will look once built.

So we are doing our sums as there will be a few extras once we get to studio M but not many as we have put so much of what we would have added at colour selection into the final contract like bricks and roof tiles, upgraded wardrobe doors, extra tiles, upgraded doors and stairs and so on.
Additional upgrades still to come will include:
carpet and underlay approx $3,500
bigger handle on pivot front door hmm guessing $300
round down pipes not the standard square box type, no idea of price
diamond gloss finish to some cabinets in kitchen, no idea of price
silver kickers for kitchen, again no idea
bigger architraves, no idea
render to portico area, approx $2,000
may be down grade the cantilever stairs, saving approx $3,000
electricals hopefully we can stick to the $10K provision in the contract!

We are thinking we can keep the studio M extra extras under $10K (optimistic?!).
If anyone knows how much the silver kickers or diamond gloss finish costs we'd love to hear from you.

Glad to have the final contract signed as we head off on a much needed and probably last holiday in a long time on Thursday prior to moving house the week we get back!


  1. I *think* (and bear in mind this was a few months ago) diamond gloss was another $150 per item (an entire bench top in our case). Not sure how that translates to cupboards.

    Metallic kickers were about $270 per addition (eg 1 x $270 for the bench and 1 x $270 for the island bench = $540). There's also a cheaper version which is a metallic 'look' but I can't remember how much this was... maybe $50?

    Again you might want to check these as I'm quoting from memory but I don't believe they were very expensive.

    Good luck keeping your Studio M additions under 10K... you're going to need it.

  2. Hi Rachel

    We're building Lindrum in Melbourne. Slab went down last week, but it's taken a loooonnnngggg time to get to this point. The Nolan is a great design which we loved too, but the Lindrum's orientation suited our block much better.

    Anyway, we did similar upgrades so I can advise on a couple:

    Silver kickers (metal laminate hence expensive)for
    kitchen $400
    butlers pantry $200
    laundry $100

    110mm x 12mm double pencil round skirting $582

    Gainsborough Horizon pull-handle for front pivot door $450

    By diamond gloss cupboards you mean two-pac finish, then allow approx $400 per door upgrade!!!

    We allowed a total of $7,000 in our contract for electrical ($2,000 in promo plus $5,000 suggested by salesman) but we still spent an extra $5,000 during our electical appointment! So budget for $12,000.

    Render we can't help as it was included in our promo.

    We upgraded toilets to the Fowler Seido but hey're an $850 upgrade - but the toliet seat has a soft close mechanism!!!!

    Let me know of you need anything else!


  3. Thanks Nick and Paul
    Those figures are very helpful.
    We already have a $10k provision for electricals included in the contract price and as we are not looking at home network, home theatre etc we are hoping to keep it simple.
    Not doing a huge amount of diamond gloss finish cupboards (it is similar to 2 pac which they have now discontinued?)and may opt not to have it at all if it turns out to be rediculously expensive.
    Good luck with your builds

  4. No worries.

    Diamond gloss is basically just shiny laminex and so is the cheapest of the lot. Next most expensive is vinyl wrap and most expensive is 2 pak.

    Not sure of the exact price difference between them but I can tell you that it was mentioned on our variation request that Metricon do not consider diamond gloss suitable for benchtops as it scratches very easily (we then swapped it for regular laminex). Not saying scratching will necessarily be such an issue for cupboard doors but something to keep in mind.

    Also with the electrical, we found that the thing that will hit you hardest in the budget is lighting, especially any kind of down lights. Makes you re-assess the display homes when you go in and realise they have over $1000 worth of downlights just in the kitchen alone!

    Good luck at the electrical and colour selection appointments. Hope it all goes smoothly.