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06 February 2012

It's done! Well, sort of. Some of you have heard me whining about the drama we have had building our house over the past few years.[More:]Between major weather problems, including when I took two months off work way back at the start, intending to get the bulk of the framing done and the roof on and it rained every single day, the collapse of the original building company that was supplying all the components and the subsequent major drama in figuring out and then arranging finance, periods of frantic activity and long periods of feeling so depressed about the whole thing that I didn't touch it for months, it's been a trial to say the least. We were on the brink of putting it on the market, knowing we were going to take an absolute hammering but not caring six months ago. After one last burst of motivation, we finally started to get somewhere late last year.

Well, we finally moved in a few weeks ago! It's not 100% finished and there is still a lot of work to do, but we couldn't stand living in a tin shed a moment longer, so broke the vow of not moving in until it was 100% complete. The interior walls are not painted, there are still some light fittings to buy and install, the doors are not painted (and we have no handles for them yet anyway), the deck is not built and there are a few other things to tidy up before I can call it finished. But at least I can finally call it home.
post by: dg at: 16:43 | 28 comments
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 06 February | 16:55
Oh wow, that is amazing. It's HUGE! That house would fetch 3 million where I live.
posted by Senyar 06 February | 17:02
Yeah, it's kind of big - 447.2 square metres (about 4,800 square feet). Five bedrooms, three bathrooms, two living areas, study, media room, double garage (plus the 12m x 9m shed), huge outdoor living area under roof. It's nice to have room to move at last :-)

I forgot to upload the floor plan - it's here.
posted by dg 06 February | 17:21
Wow, that's nice. Congrats! Now when are you hosting a MeCha blowout bash? (and more importantly, who's going to sponsor my plane ticket?)
posted by ufez 06 February | 17:33
Congratulations, dg. It looks lovely.
posted by Miko 06 February | 17:39
Wow! That looks so awesome :)
posted by sperose 06 February | 17:44
That's frickin amazing! And you're still together which is even more awesome. Hale and hearty congrats!
posted by mightshould 06 February | 17:46
posted by brujita 06 February | 18:02
It's lovely! Congrats!
posted by bluesapphires 06 February | 18:47
Super cool, dg. It looks amazing!
posted by richat 06 February | 18:55
posted by Ardiril 06 February | 19:56
That is terrific! Congrats, dg, amazing work. Good job.
posted by msali 06 February | 20:02
Very nice! I love the tile in the shower niche, and that entry door is gorgeous! Also digging the high gloss white kitchen cabinets. :)
posted by chewatadistance 06 February | 20:11
posted by initapplette 06 February | 21:19
Wow, that's big. I was going to ask why the carpet was put in before the walls were painted, but I can guess that you will be doing a lot of the painting and decorating yourself.
posted by Doohickie 06 February | 22:16
All that room to move around in, doors to put between you and your housemates, not living in a tin shed! w00t!
posted by deborah 06 February | 22:23
Thanks everyone - we've had a real love/hate relationship with this project, but it's worth it in the end (or will be, once it's all finished).

chewie, that door should be gorgeous at ~$3,000! It's a custom-built 'pivot door' 2400 mm high (8') and 1800 mm (5'10") wide, made by a local company out of Western Red Cedar. It's one of the few non-negotiable 'special' things that I insisted on. The biometric lock will complete it when I get a chance to do that part.

Yeah, Doohickie, we had to install the carpet to finish off the contract that we had with a builder to get the house to a liveable stage and there wasn't enough money available to paint the walls in the time the contract had to be completed. I was able to get all the skirting boards and architraves etc and the ceilings done before carpet went in (with lots of late night after-work painting sessions), but that's as far as our budget stretched. When you add up all the interior walls, there is 900 m2 of area to paint, which adds up to a lot of money just to buy enough paint for three coats.
posted by dg 06 February | 23:27
What an amazing house. Too fucking cool, dg.
posted by BoringPostcards 06 February | 23:34
Seriously awesome, dg. Now I'm wishing I could make it north when I'm in Sydney next month.
posted by gaspode 06 February | 23:36
Bravo! Well done. I'm jealous.
posted by Splunge 06 February | 23:53
Who can that be. Dg opens the door.
It's gaggle of people. The lanky guy who rang the doorbell speaks up: "Good afternoon. You must be Dg. Congratulations on your new house. " What a strange accent.
"We're from the internet and we've come to warm your house. I'm [unpronouncable]. Hey, is that Australian beer? How interesting. Can we come in?"
They come in. One seems to have a rabbit with her.
posted by jouke 07 February | 01:13
I love the floor plan! Congratulations!

[and yes, party time!]
posted by JanetLand 07 February | 06:25
I can guess that you will be doing a lot of the painting and decorating yourself
Just to be clear and without meaning to show off (well, maybe a little ;-), I built the whole house myself. While we had to engage a builder to do some of the final work because we couldn't get the remaining financing as owner-builders (thanks GFC), I did 90% of the work myself with the help of a friend with larger/heavier things. I also designed it, which was almost as hard as building it.
posted by dg 07 February | 16:33
So happy you got it done!

Party at dg's place!
posted by arse_hat 07 February | 16:54
Looks spiffy. Enjoy the new pad.
posted by Pips 07 February | 18:58
I understand that you did much of this yourself, dg. My uncle did something similar, so I get the idea. It's probably far more home than you might have been able to afford if someone else did the work. You have a tremendous amount of "sweat equity" in your home.
posted by Doohickie 07 February | 21:02
It's probably far more home than you might have been able to afford if someone else did the work
Yes, that was the primary motivation in doing things this way. If we engaged a builder to do the work, we could have only built a home similar to the one that we sold to pay for this project (a bit over half the size of this one), which didn't seem like much progress. By building it ourselves, we were able to bring closer together the home that we wanted and the home we could afford.

I think, though, that 'blood and tears equity' is more accurate ;-)
posted by dg 07 February | 22:14
Awesome! Congrats!
posted by gomichild 08 February | 05:12
Spooning babby bunnies! OMG! || Good little Robin Hood. That's the spirit.