Week 8: Brick by Brick; Our Boutique Build – Airlie 38

So Week 8 was all about the bricks…  I’m loving our colour choice which is great, and once those red ones are rendered it will look even better.  Our delivery of bricks has been staggered, as expected, due to being in a built up area there isn’t much space to put them!!!  So once the first drop was laid the brick layers had a couple of days off as there was nothing for them to do.  On Friday I saw more bricks had been delivered and on Monday of Week 9 they were on site working!

The bricks are called Indulgence Praline – I can’t remember if they are Cat 2 or Cat 3 to be honest, but they were an upgrade.

So here are some photos….

Front of house

Front of house

Front door

Front door

Front post - red bricks are rendered

Front post – red bricks are rendered

Kitchen windows

Kitchen windows

Alfresco support

Alfresco support

Love our bricks

Love our bricks

Second round of bricks ready to go

Second round of bricks ready to go

Austral bricks

Austral bricks

No idea what you call these, but I'm assuming the bricks go on top to create the features

No idea what you call these, but I’m assuming the bricks go on top to create the features

Kitchen windows from the opposite direction

Kitchen windows from the opposite direction

How are we going to landscape this???  Insert confused face here....

How are we going to landscape this??? Insert confused face here….

Has anyone used Praline in their brick choice?

Has anyone hated their brick choice?

Week 3 Round up – Boutique Homes Victoria; Airlie

This past week has been a great one!!!  I’m feeling really positive about our new home, and thankful we stuck it out, as there have certainly been times when I questioned our decision to knock down and re-build.

I met our Site Supervisor (SS) during the week, and he seems excellent.  Our neighbour had called us a little concerned about a few things so I organised to meet with them both (neighbour and SS).  The SS was incredibly understanding towards our neighbour and explained what was going on and what else to expect in the next couple of days.  He was calm and caring and it gave me a good feeling. As it turned out though, the guys doing the slab prep had already explained everything to our neighbour in the morning, they even knew his name – so in my eyes another tick.

Cheers again to the slab prep guys – they were digging trenches and doing their stuff in the pouring rain!!!  I was certain when it was pelting down on my way to school drop off that nobody would be on-site, but to my shock there they were not huddled up in their cars, but outside in the mud. And there is plenty of mud, between the mud from our site, the naturestrip which the council dug up next door for pipes or something, plus the development across the road where they are creating driveways and also digging up the naturestrip, there is a lot of mud going on.  Lets hope some sunshine dries it all up soon.

And lets hope the sun shines tomorrow (Monday 10th of August, 2015) – I think the concrete will be flowing… yeah!!!!  And if the concrete flows, expect a photo of the champagne flowing at our slab party!!! lol.  BUT, the forecast is showers I think so lets hope the rain stays away.

So, a great week was had in the land of Build – lets hope this coming one is great too!!! It’s all about being positive at the moment (and K-Mart – kmart home wares to be specific.)

Check out the photos below of the past week… yes, I’m still stalking. lol.  But I’m more of a “Drive By Stalker” – most of these photos are from my hubby… so who is the stalker now??? ha ha.

Did you or will you have a slab party?  I’m pretty sure I will – well, i’ll just have a glass with my hubby, it certainly is a big step worth celebrating!!!

Slab prep

Slab prep






Finally – Approval from Council: Airlie 38 Boutique Homes Victoria

FINALLY – we have approval from council!!!  So the latest delay has finally been sorted, with approval for our setback being granted on Friday (19th of June 2015).  I don’t think our neighbour signed, so council made the decision.  Yeah!!!

Hopefully this is the last hurdle, and now we can actually start building the beautiful Airlie 38.  I’m really trying not to get over excited for fear of further delays or disappointment.  Let’s face it – it has happened far too many times on this building journey!!!  We had to sort out some tile issues with Boutique and re-sign some forms that have gone missing, so with any luck our file will move to the construction department on the 1st July. I believe we will then be assigned another person to assist us with the construction phase, where we will be given a start date!!!  I’m still so disheartened that it’s hard to believe anything will actually happen, but then I catch myself daydreaming about my kitchen, and decorating the kids bedrooms!!!

So still no idea on a start date…

Tile problem:  Boutique now do a hob on showers – which is essentially a little step into the shower.  So of course my beautiful tiles I choose for the master ensuite will look terrible going over a hob, and then the cut lines pushing the water to the drain.  So I have decided to just use plain charcoal tiles on the hob and the base of the shower.  The patterned tile will remain on the floor of the rest of the bathroom.

The tiles and pattern for the floor

The tiles and pattern for the floor

I still love these tiles even though we chose them 12 months ago…  Hopefully I still love them by the time the house actually gets built.  (and everything else we picked!!!)

For those of you that have built with Boutique – how long did it take to get to site from the date your file was moved to construction?



Still waiting… Knock-down re-build nightmare

It absolutely angers me that I have to write this post.  I’m pretty much broken in regard to this knock-down re-build.  The dreams of actually living in a new home are so far gone.  Problem after problem, and the actual build hasn’t even started.  There have been more dramas than I can even mention, but the latest is becoming very frustrating.  I don’t even know who to blame – the builders, council or maybe even ourselves…

Without going on and on, and to be honest I’m totally confused – we are waiting on “Sign & Consent” from our neighbours.  One neighbour signed straight away, but the other is playing games… the frustrating part is his house is not even occupied, and hasn’t been for around 14 years!!!  AND,  until recently even had a squatter.  It has been under renovation for the 10 plus years we have owned our house.  It’s a complete eye saw and brings the whole street down, but to council that appears to be ‘ok’!

So basically the way I understand it is that we needed our neighbours to sign and consent  to the setback we want.  Our setback is within council legislation, but is slightly further forward than the original house.  The part I don’t understand is that 8 of our neighbours were sent our plans whilst applying for the Planning Permit, and we had a Public Notice Sign up for two weeks.  Nobody objected so we thought all was good…  But we weren’t informed that we needed the neighbours (only the ones directly next door) to actually sign and consent to the setback.  I don’t understand why nobody at council informed us of this, and why the builder didn’t know – surely we aren’t the first people to encounter this???  Maybe we should have done more “homework” but there has been so much to get out heads around and understand.  We aren’t builders or developers!  So to cut a long story short, Boutique sent the unoccupied neighbour the forms to sign.  We took the forms to the neighbour we know, who signed straight away.  Technically the neighbour has two weeks to respond, but Boutique gave him three… he didn’t respond!  So the application was sent to Council, where they have now contacted him, giving him around another 3 weeks to respond!!!  If he doesn’t respond, Council will review the application and make a decision, and lets face it – nothing happens over night with Council (only your rate increases)  So yet again we are in the holding bay, with no control over anything.

Another part that saddens me is we signed on April 7, 2014.  That’s over a year ago… I really thought we would have been close to moving in by now – I even said by Christmas this year, thinking that we would well and truly be in.  However, now we won’t even make Christmas this year!!!  Apparently, it’s never taken this long to get to site before – not the award I wanted to win.

We are also now paying rent, as living with my Mother In-Law had run it’s course… It’s great having our own space again, but I am now saying goodbye to buying anything new for the house.  (But at this rate, the children will be  applying for university and we will be looking to downsize!!!)  To this point, the whole experience has been frustrating and I’m completely at a loss.  I knew it would be stressful, but I really think it’s getting beyond a joke…  Here’s hoping for some positive news in the coming weeks…


Demolition – Knock Down Re-Build

So finally something has happened… My last post was in September… and sadly nothing of excitement has happened.  We have still been dealing with council – I will go into detail on that once everything is good and the house actually starts (or even finishes) It’s been a massive process to get to this point, so much harder than I imagined.

The timing of our demolition wasn’t exactly great, we tried to sell a few things – which we did, but we could have sold so much more if we had more time.  Trying to do things over the Christmas period was a little hard.  Our kitchen was relatively new, and I was a bit sad to see it smashed to the ground, but what can you do.

I sold most things on gum tree – but by the end, we were away on holidays and it was too hard to sell things when you aren’t around. The empty house also got broken into a few times and I felt uneasy about going there with two children in tow to meet people.  We had been living in another house and were moving out of that (and in with my Mother in Law) so at the same time I was packing and putting our whole life into storage.  There just wasn’t enough hours in the day to manage both and a family (and Christmas) etc etc.

We did manage to sell – the oven, the dishwasher (it was only a few months old), all free standing wardrobes, some retro sliding doors, and the air conditioner.  A friend took the kitchen overhead cupboards.  I had offers for the vanity and the front door but couldn’t organise the time to actually meet people.  (such a shame, but once the new house comes I won’t think about it.)  I wanted to keep the back door and the house number, but sadly missed my opportunity and there was no place to store the door – our storage unit was packed to the rafters)

So here are some pictures – it was a little sad to see a solid house, without a single crack in the wall go to rubble, but the new house will be amazing (I hope)








Some things to consider for demolition:

1.  Get a few quotes – they vary so much in price.

2.  Speak with your neighbours – it can be very stressful for them too

3.  Organise temporary fencing – some builders only supply it for the actual build, NOT demolition (and again get a few quotes)

4.  If you have time – sell off everything… There was so much more I could have sold. All sales help in the end… unless you are flush with cash.

5.  Our demo guys were so great – they were so lovely to my neighbour who was quite stressed out by the process.  They even moved some pavers of ours into her yard so she could use them.

So, again we are in the holding bay just waiting and waiting.  It’s been such a long wait – hopefully the new house will be worth all of this pain (because at this point I’m not feeling it)

Does anybody else have some good tips for demolition?

Airlie 33. Display Home – Boutique Homes Victoria. Clyde North

So Victoria has two Airlie 33 display homes – not sure why they didn’t make one an Airlie 38???  The front facade is even the same!!!  Anyway, here are the pictures I took of this display…

IMG_0105 IMG_0104 IMG_0103 IMG_0102 IMG_0101 IMG_0100 IMG_0098 IMG_0099 IMG_0097 IMG_0096 IMG_0095 IMG_0093 IMG_0090 IMG_0088 IMG_0087 IMG_0086I like the styling of the Wollert home better I think.  Although, I do like this carpet as well, and I LOVE the grey floor tiles in the bathroom.  I’m not a big fan of the dark overhead cupboards in the kitchen, I much prefer the white as displayed at Wollert.  So glad that Wollert displayed it white with white as that is how I want it to look.  My hubby couldn’t imagine how it, so thankfully the display opened before our colour selection appointment.

Can you “imagine” different colours, or do you need to see it clearly in the flesh?


Airlie 33. Display home – Boutique Homes Victoria – Wollert VIC

So as you know, we are going to build the Airlie 38, (which is actually 41) by Boutique Homes Victoria.  I thought you might like to see the display home pictures I took of the Airlie 33 located in Wollert, Victoria.  The floor plan is fairly different but you’ll get the drift.

Front lounge…  This is a sunken lounge, ours won’t be.  We only have a window at the front, and we are going to close it in and have double doors.

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Laundry.  Ours will have the same layout as this, including the overhead cupboards.  We have a top loader, so going to do a laminate bench top for now.  When we need to replace the washing machine (hopefully many many years down the track) we will change the bench to stone.  We won’t have the tall cupboard – that area will actually become a mud room – so excited for this.  I’ll chat about it another time….IMG_1323


Powder Room – Ours won’t be so fancy… just the basic loo and a standard basin and vanity for us.

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Kitchen – LOVE this space!!!  I plan on having the white cupboards, the window splash back and the black in the corners.  We will have a “normal” island bench – rectangle in shape not square.  I would love the induction cook top, but sadly I think it will be too expensive, so gas for us.  Our fridge will not be integrated (it’s the giant door next to the coffee machine and microwave)  I look forward to having a fridge with chilled water on demand!!!  No coffee machine either – but don’t worry, we have our trusty Aldi one!!!  I LOVE the sink – it’s a Pete Evans one….   We are going to go with a standard spout on the island bench, and change it ourselves to a funky black one after handover!!!  Would have loved a black sink too, but Boutique don’t offer them and I’m guessing that would be a little hard to change after!IMG_1338 IMG_1336 IMG_1351 IMG_1349 IMG_1343 IMG_1341 IMG_1340





Pantry –  Can’t wait for this either – so much space!!!  Ours will be slightly different as we are blocking the second entrance, so you can only enter from the kitchen and not the hallway.  The window splash back in here is also an upgrade which we are doing  🙂

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Lounge / Dining / Outdoor Living Space – Again we have changed this area.  We flipped the Lounge and Outdoor Living.  So the Outdoor space will flow from the kitchen, and the Living and dining are next to each other. No fire for us  🙁

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Staircase – we are having timber stairs.  I hate trying to vacuum carpet on stairs, a broom will be much easier.  And the carpet wears quickly in the middle, so ends up looking ordinary very quickly.  Not having any of the fancy glass, just normal plaster walls for us, and I think a smaller window.IMG_1382


Upstairs – Retreat.


Master Bedroom – Ours is a different layout, but here are the pictures.



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Other Bedrooms and Bathroom

IMG_1378 IMG_1375 IMG_1374 IMG_1372 IMG_1371Any other pictures…

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Thinking this carpet????

Please note, all these pictures were taken by me.  Boutique have better quality ones on their website.

What do you think?  What are you draws you in, and what don’t you like?