Sunday, 17 November 2013

Day 240 - We have Keys!

We are very excited to announce after 235 days since we started building we received the keys to our dream home.

Such an exhausting day filled with lots of emotion. But so worth it.

We walked through the house with our Site Supervisor and most of the imperfections we found during our last walk through had been fixed. There were still a few things that were not finished, such as;

1. No ducted vacuum unit. Apparently the unit is always installed after handover as it is one thing tradies like to steal! 

(I think Metricon need to install security cameras on all their sites!)

2. Some of the walk in robe doors needed to be changed completely. Could have been done before settlement however they needed to wait on materials to be delivered!

I guess they were the two main things. This didn't stop handover though. As exciting as it was to get the keys I really thought we should have waited until all of these things had been completed. Reason being is now I have to organise times to be at home so that these things can be installed and fixed. Very annoying as I just don't have the time to sit around and wait for tradies to come....and we all know how that works!!

Our Site Supervisor has been fantastic. In fact he has helped me coordinate some of these tradies and has forced them to fit into my schedule. 

Not sure how other big volume builders work however our Site Supervisor is still looking after us for another month. So if there are any issues we can still call him to get things fixed which is very reassuring considering we have already noticed a few issues since getting the keys.

After three months Metricon will come and see us and check in on any issues we have had. Hopefully there will be no major issues, but again good to know that they will check the house.

I have a busy week ahead with curtains being installed during the week as well as more tradies coming to fix a few things at the house.  

Looking forward to settling in the house with the kids.  They are really excited to have their on rooms and space. After living on top of each other for the last few years it will be a big change for all of us.

Kids bathroom


Dining room - love those windows!

Kid's entertainment/living area

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Day 226 - 1 Week Till Handover

Sorry for not updating you earlier, but things have been manic....especially with getting things organised for the house.

We had our final walk through last week. In the lead up to the walk through I read heaps of blogs about running through that all important last walk through before handover. 

So many things to take in. The one thing that seemed to come up a lot was to keep a running list of all the imperfections that you notice. Not just during the walk through but from Day 1. Also make sure you run through your plans and ensure that all those variations you made along the way have been adhered to. Especially any electrical or plumbing issues.

Before our walk through began our SS told us that he had walked through the house with a Metricon Area Manager and they had already picked up some small issues. 

Lucky for us we had our on private building inspector run through the house whilst we were there doing our final inspection. What we didn't pick up he did!! Let's just say that we would have had leaking toilets if our private inspector hadn't double checked the toilets after we did. 

This was not Metricon's fault though. Our SS told us that at the end of many builds there are some "tradies" that think it is ok to steal small parts and screws from the house. So between our SS surveying the house and us doing the walk through someone came through our house with "sticky fingers". 

Our walk through took 3hrs. A lot longer than I had planned. We just wanted it to be thorough. One of the things I liked about our SS taking us through was that he didn't really down play any of the issues we found. He was honest and made sure that everything we queried would be looked into. 

Obviously we will need to wait for handover to ensure that everything is sorted, but I do have faith that he will get the job done right.

With the handover creeping up on us we are yet to finalise all our white goods and I feel a little rushed. I guess the build had been so long in he making that now that we are finally here it just doesn't seem real!!

Like many other Metricon blogs I have read we also have heaps of purple (not red) dots around the house. I took heaps of photos to make sure I remembered where they all were!!

Metricon also provided us with a list of the issues we had. At handover we will walk through them all and make sure everything has been taken care of.

Looking forward to updating you next week after handover.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Day 208 - Getting Close

I have been informed that we are only weeks away from getting our keys. Well hopefully!!
Everything seems to be coming together.  The fireplace is in and final touches are being made to the painting and staining.
You may recall I mentioned in my previous blogs that we would need to stain the stairs after handover. Metricon did not offer the service.  Well we got to meet and chat with the painters who offered thier services to stain the staircase.  This was great news as they were also staining our front door and stacker doors.
At least everything would match!
Not much more to report on. We are yet to settle on purchasing whitegoods. I'm sure we will need to do this soon as time is getting the better of us.
Thought I would post some updated pictures...

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Day 200 - Inspiration

As we hit day 200 since the start date of the build I found this bit of inspiration which I thought was fitting for where we are at the moment.

We are fast approaching our end date (not that we know when that is yet), and we can't wait!!

I hope this gives some clarity to others who are looking at building or are in the process of building!

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Day 188 - Anybody There?

We are definitely on the home straight now.

Carpet and floorboards are in...and they look great.

When I started this blog my intention was never to highlight all the errors/mistakes being made by Metricon, but to provide a journal for me and others to show the whole build process...good and bad.

I have to say, now that we are nearing the end there have only been a handful of issues that Metricon have dealt with really well. Our new SS has been on top of everything and has been great.

BUT...there is always a but! The last week or so has been disappointing. To no fault of their own we have been left in the dark as customers. You see our Customer Service Consultant left the company last week. We knew of this departure and we also knew who was to replace her, however her replacement is on annual leave. In addition to that our SS is also on leave. To make matters worse we never even got an email or phone call from our Customer Service Consultant to say that her last day was last Friday! We were emailing and calling someone who wasn't even there! No out of office reply...not even a voicemail to say she had left the company!

Poor form I know from the Customer Service not really having a direct go at Metricon here, but what I want to highlight is that we as customers got left behind!

The problem has now been fixed. In fact I had a call from one of Metricon's Area Manager's who was very apologetic and very helpful!

That's great and I appreciate it, but I just want to highlight to all who are building or thinking of building, make sure you have not one, not two but at least three contacts whom you can call and rely on for information.

Our situation was quite unique and I am sure that it doesn't happen all the time, but it was so frustrating to know that a query I had from last week could have been actioned last week if only someone had made it clear to us that we no longer had a Customer Service Consultant.

Whether you think I am being precious or not, our build is a big deal to us. in fact it is life changing. I think it's important builders, not just Metricon, understand and remember this.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Day 186 - Retail Therapy

We are yet to get a handover date but from what we can see we shouldn't be too far away now!

It has been some time since my last post. The painters and tilers have finished and the electricians have also put their final touches to the house - I am sure they will be back to fix things!

I went past the house today to find the floorboards are being laid. Looking from the windows outside (house is now locked), the floorboards had been laid in the dining room only so there was a bit more work to go.  It was a hard to decision to make at the time - floorboards or tiles?  But we came to the conclusion that floorboards (Bamboo) would make the house feel warmer and possibly easier to keep clean.

It's great to see everything come together.  Even though I had taken photos of our colour choices it was so long ago that I had forgotten what we had chosen. This also applies to the handles and mixers. I am really happy with the bathrooms.  The tiles look fantastic.  I am glad we followed the advice of the guys at Beaumont Tiles and just stuck to the one tile/design. It's true what they told us.  You can always add and change accessories to the bathrooms but once you choose different patterns or designs in the tiles you are stuck with them forever. That's not to say you won't love them forever but for me I like things simple and the tiles are just that! 

So why the heading Retail Therapy?  Well since we are getting closer to handover we decided to go shopping for furniture on the weekend and we ended up buying a lounge, dining table. chairs and a bedroom suite for my daughter's room.  Tick, Tick and Tick!

I love shopping - who doesn't?  But I have to tell you it was pretty exhausting travelling around town negotiating on the best deal.

I know most people like to see photos of the house and where everything is at so below are some pictures of the house so far.
Ensuite - we have light!

Feature wall - insert fireplace here.

Main bathroom - porcelain tiles

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Day 170 - All Coming Together

We met with our SS on Friday to go through the house.
The house was abuzz with painters and tilers busy working on the house. Whilst we were there we also found time to get a quote for the window furnishings. I wasn't too sure what we were going to go with - so much to choose from. Curtains, roller blinds, plantation shutters!
We finally settled on the idea of getting a variety of furnishings for the windows which will compliment each room.  I am still going through the quotation process so I'll give you more details on my choice and who I chose when this is finalised.  I am looking at getting a few quotes (I figure I have the time so no need to rush).
A combination of double roller blinds with pelmets, plantation shutters and curtains is where I am headed.  I have no idea of colours as yet.  I was hoping to make this decision after the floorboards are installed.  This should help us make a more informed decision.
Overall the house is coming together.  The painting has made a huge difference to the feel of the house. Our SS is still reluctant to give us an estimated handover date.  We are hoping for December.  It would be great to get into the house before Christmas.  I would also like to start locking away a landscaper so that our Alfresco area and front yard can be worked on during the Summer.

After all this time we now have to pull up our sleeves and start getting organised. Below are some photos we took on Friday of the house so far.  We were very excited to see the tiling, or what has been done so far.

Looking into the living room - love those picture windows. Waiting for the fireplace to be installed on the wall. Paint colour is Grand Piano Half - Ceiling and Cornice is in Natural White.

Living room - cabinetry still be finished - as mentioned before waiting patiently for the fireplace.

Master bedroom

Ensuite - we have tiles - porcelain to be exact!

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Day 153 - Fixing Stage...Already!!

I do apologise for not posting for a couple of weeks.

It has been hectic couple of weeks.  I spoke to our Site Supervisor today and it seems as though things are full steam ahead. In fact we should be at the end of our fixing stage next week.  Just need to plaster up the roof of the garage and alfresco area.

The painters were at the house today starting to prep the house.  I got a sneak peak today and the painters were busy putting the first coat on the architraves and they also started their first coat on the walls.

The kitchen is in and so is the Butler's Pantry.  I LOVE IT!  So much space....not sure how I am going to fill it all up but something tells me it won't be too hard.  You may have read in my previous posts that we were getting Blum mechanics to the kitchen cabinetry.  The pantry is now complete with the draws which are great.  All the cabinets are soft closing, which I highly recommend. 

All the cabinetry is in and the handles are also on which is great.  Our WIR looks amazing...again so much space.  I think I may need to go shopping for a few more dresses.

In our leisure room upstairs we have installed cabinetry which looks great. 

All the wet areas have now been sealed including the balcony area upstairs.  Like I said it has been full steam ahead.

On the weekend just passed we went to the Home Show.  I have posted about the Home Show (we went last year as well).  We did find it a little more useful this year since we were now at final stages.  A very long day.  I think the winners at this year's home show were the Kitchen displays.  So many people surround all the new kitchens.  Heaps of interesting new features...I had a sticky beak and thankfully some of these new designs are features in my own kitchen.  Made me feel a lot better!

I guess that is enough waffling from me.  Below are some pictures of the house so far...

Butler's Pantry - Pantry Doors
Draws in the Pantry
WIR in our room (this is just one side) 
Painter's prepping the family room and kitchen
Butler's Pantry 
Front far 

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Day 138 - Kitchen and Cabinetry

For a long time now we have been patiently waiting for the kitchen and cabinets to be delivered. Well the wait is over.  This week has been a busy one.  We now have a roof on our garage and the kitchen, Butler's Pantry, wardrobes have been installed.  Oh yes and the powder room, laundry and the bathrooms all have cabinets now!  I am really excited to see so much happening at the house, however I have been warned that the pace will slow down soon.

Our Site Supervisor has been churning through the house and has been really good with responding to our queries.  In my previous post I mentioned that we had hit "lock up" stage.  Well we checked the contract to see what "lock up" stage was and in actual fact it was a little different to what we had initially thought.  To cut a long story short we had our Private Inspector go through the house late last week. We received the report on Friday and sent it to our Site Supervisor and Consultant. We have now reached "lock up" bring on the fixing stage!

Below are some pics of the house from late last week....

Installation of the kitchen
Study nook and Fridge area
Butler's Pantry - Blum cupboard doors....awesome. 

Monday, 29 July 2013

Day 129 - Lock up?

On Friday afternoon we received that infamous text message from Metricon.

You have now reached lock up stage....please pay your invoice!  Well words to that effect anyway.  As soon as we got the text message an email arrived and sure as you would have it today the bill arrived in the mail.

Got to hand it to their accounts department....they are on the ball and don't miss a beat!

SO as I mentioned earlier we are now at Lock Up stage!  Well I don't think so. 

We still don't have a front door/garage door - garage roof and some of the windows are not even complete.  Not really sure what Metricon constitute as "Lock Up" but I am pretty sure you need to be able to lock a door!  Would love to hear from some of you who have been through this stage or are at the same stage.

Having said that we got a mighty shock at the house on the weekend.  We had no idea that the staircase had been when we went to check on the house we were shocked to see stairs!  I was so excited.  I had been waiting and waiting for the day I could check upstairs and it didn't disappoint. We will be staining the stairs in a Jarrah. We did try to get Metricon to stain the stairs however they did not want a bar of I guess we will need to start looking into someone staining the stairs.  If anyone has any recommendations please let me know.

Very exciting times.

Last week was a long week for me and it was great to top it off with seeing the stairs.  On top of that we got a new Site Supervisor as our previous Supervisor was not well.  We will miss him but it seems as though things a full steam ahead with our new Site Supervisor so I guess we are still in very good hands.

Below are some pictures of the house - without scaffolding and with stairs!!!

Monday, 22 July 2013

Day 122 - Plaster it Up

It has been a busy week at the house.

For some time we have been waiting patiently to see more work at the house and in the past week we have seen the blueboard finished ready for render and the front two pillars (Nuvo Facade) being preped for render as well.

We also had the plasterer come through the house. 

We had a quick look on the weekend and were really excited to see the plaster throughout the house. 

We can now see the house come to life.

Our Site Supervisor told us that once the plasterers finish up the cornices will be installed and then hopefully the staircase and the kitchen will be installed.

I am yet to take a look upstairs so I am looking forward to seeing the staircase! 

Below are some pics of the house with plastering....

Hallway Entry - Theatre room on the left
Dining Room and Family Room - photo taken from the kitchen

Friday, 12 July 2013

Day 112 - Picking up the Pace

It has been a couple of weeks since my last post. Not much has changed, however this week we saw the insulation being put into the house and the brickies finally came back to finish off the garage. Not sure when the brickies will be back but it doesn't seem like they did much to the garage on Thursday!
Preparations are also being made to install the blue board. We have been told by numerous people including our SS that the blue board needs to be installed evenly and in one direction otherwise the final outcome can look awful. So with that in mind we hope our SS looks over this job carefully to ensure it's done right the first time.

Below are some pics of the house.

Tomorrow we are meeting up with a landscaper to go through our ideas and cover off our priority list. As you may have noted in my previous blogs we wanted to prioritise the landscaping in sections from most important to least. As our money tree is not growing at the moment we just want to make sure the front and alfresco areas are done first.
On another note I saw the new Metricon ad today.  The ad plays on the emotive side...I do like the ad...just a little over the top though.
See if you like it;


Thursday, 27 June 2013

Day 96 - Meeting with our SS

Today we met with our Site Supervisor at the house.

We spent just over 2 hours going over all our questions and queries.  Our Site Supervisor was great.  He managed to answer most of our questions and also showed us some of the work that still needs to be done in the house. 

We still have a few things that need to be fixed but all in all the meeting went well.  It does make a difference when you can talk one on one with the builder and find out why things are taking longer than they should.

I may have already mentioned this but I will say it again.  It is really important you have everything in writing...and that you are specific with your builder as to how you want things to be.  As there are so many different people working on your house at any one time if you keep on top of the builders you are more likely to find mistakes early so that they can be fixed.

The good thing is that we are all on the same page with our Site Supervisor.  We want things done right the first time. 

As it has been some time since I last posted a photo of the house I thought I would add one in.  Unfortunately you can't see much because of all the scaffolding.

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Day 92 - Where is the Love?

Day 92 and we are still no closer to lock up. The bricklayers have done as much as they can (so I am told), but they still haven't finished off the garage.

Our Site Supervisor has told us that they need to finish off the piping/drainage on the side of the garage and until they do this the garage can't be finished.  This is holding up everything else. Without the garage up they can't start putting the blue board up and so the list goes on. Fingers crossed this gets sorted this week.

Communication at Metricon headquarters has also ceased...We should be getting weekly updates from our Site Supervisor but that doesn't seem to be happening - unless we contact him.  This is getting a little frustrating considering we have heaps of questions and queries that we want answers on. In saying that our Site Supervisor has been great so far....when we get a chance to chat with him. In fact I was lucky enough to speak to him on Friday so I believe we will be catching up this week. Finally.

Such a huge volume builder like Metricon I guess it is to be expected that our Site Supervisor has more than one home to look after, keeping him very busy.  That being said this one home is our home and therefore I expect a lot from Metricon.  Not only in the final product but also in the service along the way.

I am sure many of you will agree with me that signing a Building Contract is a big step.  For us it was years in the making, so I guess when it comes to expecting a detailed phone call once a week with answers to our questions - it's not a lot to ask or expect.  I also know that there will be some weeks that go by which there is nothing major to update us on, however we have a list of 17+ queries sitting with Metricon at the moment we're waiting to get answers to.

This is not a personal attack on our Site Supervisor at all.  Like I said he is doing the best he can and we appreciate his honesty and help along the way.  This is more of an understanding that I think Metricon need to work at.

If the Site Supervisor is too busy then we need someone else to contact us and let us know where the build is at.  Either way we should be getting this phone call.

It would be great to hear if anyone else has had the same types of issues a long the way.

Monday, 17 June 2013

Day 86 - Brick by Brick

I was hoping to post new photos of the house but the scaffolding is still up for the bricklayers to finish off the bricking. So not much to see really.

It seems like the bricklayers have been bricking up our house forever!  This weather hasn't helped at all. It was encouraging to see the brickies working on the weekend. I guess they want to finish the job too!

In the meantime we have been meeting with some landscapers to get quotes for landscaping the house. 

We put together a brief for the landscapers.  We basically prioritised the important jobs that we wanted done first.  We are hoping to break up the work in stages so that we don't have to compromise on the things we want.

It took us 3 hours to put the brief together.  We added photos and designs that we liked and we also included what colours and themes we had chosen for inside the house.  There are so many things to think about besides what plants you want.

As we are only in the initial stages of planning for the landscaping I will put together a more detailed blog on the landscaping once we choose which direction we will take.

In the meantime I promise to posts some new photos of the house.  We are hoping to have most of the bricking finished this week.  Watch this space!

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Day 75 - Slow Progress & My Metricon - How Can it be Improved?

The past two weeks has seen no big changes to the build.  Things have definetly slowed down. Snails pace is the best way to describe it.  We had to wait for scaffolding to be installed for the bricklayers to finish off the bricking...that took a week to arrive.  Then the weather turned ugly.  All in all we are hoping to see some more work done in the coming week so I will update you all with more pictures soon.

In saying that this week I asked Metricon to set us up with the "My Metricon" feature on their website - this is for Victorian customers only.  If you are building with Metricon this feature allows you to look at the progression of your build.  It also provides information on "Your Team Members" (this would be your Site Supervisor and Customer Consultant).

Below is a grab from the Metricon website which outlines the benefits of My Metricon;

Benefits at a glance

  • Ability to check the progress of your home at your own time and pace;
  • Access detailed information about your new home, at the click of a mouse;
  • Keep up-to-date on the progress of your home without having to contact Metricon staff;
  • Access to a large information resource; and
  • Learn more about the process of building your home, at every step.
  • We look forward to welcoming you to my metricon

I must say I was a little disappointed with the site.  Besides the pretty graph on the front page that shows you how far you are into your build, there wasn't much more on this site that was helpful.  There was a Studio M tab which just took you through what Studio M was, but this is not that helpful.  If you are already a Metricon customer then you already know what Studio M is. Not only that, you have already picked your interiors so why would I want to know what's new at Ceaserstone??

I think they should update this tab to allow you to see what you chose at Studio M.  It should highlight what colours you chose and then maybe direct you to the Metricon Look Book to help you choose the right interiors. Not just colours but also what products you chose. 

At this stage of the building process unless you took heaps of photos etc you would have forgotten some things you chose at Studio M.  Of course you can always go through your paperwork but wouldn't it be easier to have it at your fingertips online??  Wouldn't this add to the whole Metricon build experience?

Also I think they should add another tab - Variations!  Yep, it should highlight all the variations you have made and when you made them and who made them.  This would probably be useful for everyone including Metricon. This is probably a huge job for Metricon to undertake - not sure how their IT Programmers would take it.

If you are going to have this website service for your clients then they should make it worthwhile.  According to the Metricon guidelines I should be getting regular updates from my Site Supervisor and Consultant on a weekly basis, so the bar graph on the site is something I should already know....and I do...I have a great Site Manager and Consultant!  What I am trying to get at is there needs to be a more personable approach to the "My Metricon" service.

On another note Metricon's Lookbook is a great addition to their website.  It has so many inspiring design ideas and I am always looking at the site to get ideas.....

Monday, 27 May 2013

Design Inspirations and Where to Look...

I thought I would take a time out in showing off our new home and start to look at interior design. 

For me this is the most exciting part of the home build. 

I get to work with a clean slate...I get to completely design the whole house and most importantly buy new things!!

I have been putting together a design board of all my favourite colours and design features.  In fact my "Inspiration" tab on the left of this blog is where I am housing most of my ideas for the interior of the house.  The new addition to this is

I found this site when looking through the Exhibitors at the Salone del Mobile 2013 exhibition held in Milan.  No I did not attend (unfortunately), however I jumped online to check out what was new in furntiure and interior design.

Mooi are not based here in Australia however Space Furniture in Richmond are their distributors.  Not sure about the rest of the capital cities but I am sure there should be Distributors across Australia...just check out the mooi site for more information.

These sites are great for design I have mentioned in my previous blogs our "money tree" is pretty low at the moment so I am not expecting to buy the "real thing" however looking at these sites gives me a greater understanding of what I can look out for.  I intend on buying a lot of my furniture online...that is including light features. 

As I investigate further I am finding that what is available instore is often much cheaper (even with delivery) online.  Big Brown Box is a perfect example - as too is Appliances online -

Ebay is also worthwhile as I often see great deals on pendant lights.

Enough writing from me...below are some pics from the Salone del Mobile 2013...
Euroluce - photo by Annalisa Cimmino

Euroluce - photo by Annalisa Cimmino

Below are some designs from Mooi...


Saturday, 25 May 2013

Day 63 - First Look of Upstairs!!

It has been some time since my last post. 

The house is still being bricked up and so I wanted to give it some time before I posted more photos... 

We went passed the house today only to find the "brickies" working!  On a Saturday...we were impressed!  Looks like Metricon are running on a strict timeline and these guys need to meet it!

It is funny though...there are a few houses being built around where we live and most of them started construction when we did.  None of the houses have roofs, most are still having the frames put up.  I have to say Metricon have been very efficient in getting things organised.  That is definetly a big plus.

There has also been some development inside the house. The internal cavity doors were delivered and installed downstairs which was exciting. They still need to be painted everything is still very raw.

We also got a glimpse of the work that is being done upstairs....

Main Bedroom - looking out to the balcony
Main Bathroom upstairs

Main Bedroom - looking into Ensuite

Brickwork on the house

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Day 50 - Let's brick it up!

We had a call from our SS during the week. He advised us that bricking will start on Monday. We went passed the house today. Preparation had begun for bricking. Here are some photos to show the progress so far....

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Day 44 - Meet & Greet With our SS

Today we had the opportunity to go through the house with our Site Supervisor Clive.

We were so grateful that Clive arranged a Sunday appointment. As my husband and I both work it is often hard to arrange inspections during the week.

We had so many questions and Clive walked us through the house. He also gave us some interesting things to think; where do we think the TV's will be mounted on the wall etc... Having said that if we give our SS the approximate height then he will make sure the appropriate frames are made so the TV would have sufficient posts to be mounted correctly.

As we walked through the house Our SS also showed us how the sliding doors would work and also told us about the logistics of the water piping inside the house.

We also had concern regarding the network cabling. Our SS told us that we would be able to have another walk through with the electrician and himself to make sure everything would be in place before the plastering commenced.

Below are some more pics of the house...oh yes and we now have a roof!