Build a luxurious, contemporary home with plenty of space for your family, without compromising on the location you love. Many Melbourne homeowners wish they had a more spacious and modern home, but do not want to give up their convenient property location. You can take full advantage of your existing block and have your dream home become a reality by completing a knock-down rebuild. Remove the need for stamp duty charges and the endless search for the perfect existing establishment, by creating the opulent home you have been searching for at your existing address. The following knock down rebuild checklist will help you to prepare for a custom knock-down rebuild to ensure everything runs smoothly and you are relaxing in your luxurious new custom home build in no time.
UNDERSTANDING YOUR BLOCK
Research and preparation of your block
The first thing you should do when preparing for a knock down rebuild is to contact the local council to discover any planning overlays that may be affecting your property. The council will be able to provide you with extensive details about your land. You will also need to obtain an asset protection permit from the council. This assists the council to ensure public assets and infrastructure are not damaged as a result of any building or demolition work.
Regulations and considerations
It’s important to be prepared with as much knowledge of your block as possible before hiring a custom home builder. Look over the title documents to ensure you can make the modifications you want. Check with the council if there are any regulations that are specifically relevant to your block of land. It’s possible that the building regulations and requirements may have changed from when the house was first built, so it’s vital to check before you begin your knock down rebuild. If your home contains asbestos, the demolisher or builder will require a certificate to ensure that it’s removed safely. If you are building in Melbourne, the EPA and WorkSafe Victoria have requirements that must be met if asbestos needs to be removed. At Rycon Building Group, we can provide a full site assessment, including a review of the slope, orientation, setbacks, easements and size of your block. For your piece of mind, our team will also review all of the relevant regulations and planning requirements on your behalf, to ensure that the plans for your new home comply with the required building regulations.
All properties require a legal point of discharge for stormwater drains, as well as a sewer tie within the property boundary for sewerage connection prior to site start. In some cases, where a house has been standing for some time, your existing legal point of discharge may not be satisfactory for a new building. If the legal point of discharge is not within the property boundary, it is the owner’s responsibility to bring it to an acceptable position. The relevant local council will determine the satisfactory legal point of discharge, so it is crucial to obtain approval before construction begins.
YOUR NEW HOME BUILD
Choosing your knock down rebuild custom builder
The knock-down rebuild process doesn’t happen overnight, so it is vital to select a custom home builder that you have absolute confidence in. If you are hiring a Melbourne home builder, ensure they are registered with Master Builders Association of Victoria. You should also do your research on what previous customers have had to say by looking for reviews and testimonials online. Ensure your selected builder can show you examples of previous knock down rebuild projects, so you can be certain the craftsmanship is on par with your expectations, and get some inspiration while you are at it. It is also advantageous to find a builder who specialises in your region. If you know they build exclusively in your area, they will have existing relationships with the local councils and they will be well versed in guidelines and land conditions specific to your local area. It also generally means the builder and their trades will be close by should any issues arise throughout the process.
Choosing a new home design floorplan
When designing your new custom home one major advantage is that your floorplan can be customised conducive to your lifestyle requirements. At Rycon we recommend deciding on your “must-haves” and “nice to haves” and we can help you envision the most suitable solution around these ideals. This may be that you would like all bedrooms away from the entertaining area or the neighbour’s garage to allow for a peaceful sleep at any time. You may want a mudroom entrance directly from the garage for those rainy Melbourne days, or your priority may be to simply increase your open living space to create a bright and airy atmosphere.
When deciding on your floorplan, you should also consider the orientation of your home to take advantage of the natural light and views. For example, choose north-facing kitchen and living areas as the sun is less direct throughout the day and cooler in the evening. A well-planned design can save you money by considering existing land and size constraints to maximise your space effectively. Rycon has a complete design and construct service so we can create an innovative custom floorplan tailored to your needs. Our in-house design team discuss your options with our construction experts to take full advantage of your existing block in terms of design while keeping in mind any possible building parameters. This ensures the outcome is not only attractive but is functional in terms of lifestyle and construction.
Choosing the style of your new home
Building a new custom home creates the opportunity to completely control the direction of the design, style and atmosphere of your residence. There is a wealth of considerations in designing all custom-built homes, such as roof pitch, building materials, features, colour palette and accents. You should always consider the street appeal of your home as well, such as if it will suit the other homes on the street. It can be very daunting when you have to select each facet of your build, or imagine a street view, so you are best to find a builder that specialises in a style of home you like. Below we have outlined some popular architectural styles of homes in Melbourne.
- Victorian Custom Home: Victorian homes are not as functional as other style homes, as they are heavily driven by the elaborate appearance instead of allowing for modern lifestyle requirements. They often feature intricate details, steep roof pitches, large porches and decorative railings. The colours are often whimsical and the atmosphere is intimate.
- Hamptons Custom Home: The popularity of Hampton style home builds is growing in Melbourne due to their intricate yet dependable design. This style, inspired by the breezy Long Island, New York, delivers coastal influences with soft, neutral colour palettes, weatherboard cladding and detailed architraves, in an open plan functional space. Often adorned with ornate features, decadent benchtops such as marble, and timber flooring, this style is the ultimate combination of elegance and comfort.
- Luxury Modern Custom Home: No longer is steel, glass, wood and concrete restricted to the structural integrity of the home. A lot of Melbourne home builders are using a brilliant combination of multiple materials throughout the design of homes, fast becoming the new “modern”. Quite often unique, minimalist with sharp lines and large picture windows, these luxurious homes are very attractive to Melbourne You can see an example here.
CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE DEMOLITION BEGINS
It’s important to take into account the accessibility of your block for both demolition and construction of a new dwelling. You will need to factor in the size of the road, nearby schools or buildings, overhead power lines and the requirement for traffic management if you live on a busy road or in an area with limited access. Restricted access blocks may result in additional charges due to the management of traffic. At Rycon we can assess your access capabilities upon a complimentary site visit.
Power, water and gas supply
If your power connection is currently overhead, you may like to arrange for an electricity pit to be installed to create a clean street view of your home without messy powerlines. Should you choose to do so, your home builder can organise electrical contractors to run underground power connections to your new home. If you choose to install an underground pit, it is recommended that you organise the installation as early as you possibly can, as it can take a considerable amount of time to install. It can be quite costly to opt for underground power, so some people keep their costs to a minimum by retaining the overhead power. Should this be your choice, a temporary power pole needs to be arranged and installed for the duration of the build.
The water and gas supply will also need to be removed entirely from the property, including all pipes and meters. This allows builders to start from a blank slate, without having to worry about old systems interfering with construction work.
Your neighbours may need to be consulted before demolition and construction. If your proposed plan falls outside of the standard building regulations, you will have to gain consent from your neighbours, as any objections they may have can potentially alter the design of your home. This can delay the construction process as adjustments will need to be made.
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT THROUGHOUT THE PROCESS
Knock down process
Generally, your new home builder will not manage the demolition of your existing home. Many, like us at Rycon Building Group, will refer you on to a team of experienced demolition specialists who can arrange your permits, temporary fencing, site clearing, special requirements and certification to suit our exact specifications in preparation of your new custom home build. It is recommended to choose a company who is a registered building practitioner registered with Master Builders. If you are building in Melbourne, look for the VBA logo.
Custom home build process
Once you have approved your detailed working drawings and floorplans for construction, your home builder should provide guidance on selecting and sourcing the best finishes for your budget, lifestyle and style requirements.
When your construction is ready to begin, you should receive regular updates on the progress of your home, and the ability to visit your site at multiple stages of the build.
At Rycon Building Group, upon completion of every construction stage, we arrange an independent building inspection via the BEA (Building Ethics Australia) to ensure your absolute confidence in our craftsmanship.
Once your project is complete, you will be contacted by your builder to arrange a time to collect the keys and receive any relevant certifications. Your home builder and any other relevant trades should walk you through everything in your new-look home, and leave you armed with any relevant maintenance/ instructional manuals.
There is a lot to consider when planning a knock down rebuild, but at Rycon, we can take the stress out of the situation and provide guidance to ensure your new home is built in accordance with regulations and to the highest standard. If you’re ready to begin your knock down and rebuild a new custom home in Melbourne, contact us here.