If you have decided to carry out a renovation or build a new home it is important that you don’t fall for the ‘spin’ spruiked by volume-based design & constructors or builders according to Archicentre Australia.
Rather, the national architect’s advisory service recommends that you engage with a community-based Archicentre Australia architect to ensure your renovation or new home represents the best value for money possible in terms of liveability, sustainability and return on investment.
“Don’t be treated as a ‘punter’ by the spin merchants,” says Archicentre Australia director Peter Georgiev. “If this occurs there is a good chance that you will not come out a winner and the home you wish for will not deliver.
“The spin is often founded on the apparent attractiveness of ‘gadget-driven’ living rather than the lifestyle benefits that can only be gained from engaging with an informed architect right from the start,” he warns.
‘Off the Plan’ is generally a major component of the yarn put forward by volume-based builders and apartment developers but, Peter Georgiev says, there are many stories around the country of negative consequences of falling for the spin and “why, oh why the alternative of a traditional and steadfast architect driven process wasn’t considered more seriously”.
He says day after day consumers are contacting Archicentre Australia seeking advice regarding their decision to engage in the promise of an ‘Off the Plan’ house, apartment or townhouse.
“They’ve paid a deposit … and waited in anticipation of what life will be like in their fabulous new dwelling… after-all the display house was compelling.
“Things start to get unsettling around the time of the first opportunity to assess the newly built entity … and then comes the time for settlement.
“The conversation is eerily similar – customers have put down a deposit for a ‘dream future’ in a brand new dwelling, but then the problems start, and it is more often than not very costly and time-consuming to remedy the problems, if at all.”
He says in this current epoch where there is no client or a heavily constrained client, it is generally left up to developer and/or builder driven enthusiasm.
The result is homes not built to last, with leaking showers and balconies, cracking ‘waffle pod slabs’, little or no consideration to solar aspects, etc. “It is a lengthy list”, Peter Georgiev says, “and we are finding that this story is being repeated time and time again.
“We have concerns about correct detailing of balcony floor levels and waterproofing. In time, these defects can and do affect the built fabric and inherent construction. In cases of timber framed construction, bottom plates of wall frames can deteriorate affecting wall stability – not to mention the stability of cantilevering balconies. In concrete framed buildings the problem is more intractable – particularly where balcony floor levels are at or higher than adjacent internal floor levels.
“Our assessments are also finding far too many showers that do not drain to waste, with stepless showers running backwards to adjacent carpeted or timber floating floors.
“This pattern of complaint is reverberating – and so the warning is ever more relevant … ‘Off the Plan’ and ‘Volume Built’ are dangerous prospects.”
The Archicentre Australia director says engaging with an Archicentre Australia architect ensures that a design can be tailored to the site, aspect and your needs – and then accommodation and building costs can be optimised.
“Before putting down a deposit it is highly recommended that alternative methods of building procurement be considered.
“While many of these will require additional effort, research and time, they can lead to decisions that impact far more positively on future living, investment and cost.”
For more information go to www.archicentreaustralia.com.au
This media release has been written and distributed by:
Peter Georgiev, Director
Level 1, 9 Strathalbyn Street,
Kew East, VICTORIA, 3102
Phone: 1300 13 45 13 | 03 9859 9950