Our experience at New Home Building Brokers has shown us that these are the ten most important things people need to know when wanting to knock down a house with the view to rebuild.
NHBB recommend that you do this totally independent from a builder. You will be surprised how much time and money you can save.
These tips are in no particular order.
1. Survey the block before and after, it's important that you actually know what is the true and correct boundary of the block you have. The builder normally does the second survey later and this confirms the final levels of the sand after the demolition is complete. Not knowing this beforehand can be costly, additional site works to create the levels for the building approvals can add up very quickly.
2. Knock down and rebuild cost. When inquiring on cost to knock down and rebuild, get 3 quotes and make sure you are not dealing with the same company... You would be surprised who owns who in the Demolition market. Confirm if you have any asbestos and always make sure you have the full break down of all charges inclusive of GST. Don’t get sucked into the first number that may seem cheap!
3. Always be very clear with what you are going to keep yourself, if anything. As a rule just leave it to the demolition company it's not worth the hassle. Remember the old floorboards are normally from small home and not enough for the future build. Be clear and put it in writing.
4. If the property is tenanted, don't let the tenants know sooner than you have to, you want to avoid a leaving party. Also make sure they take all of the items they moved in with. Remember, the more that has to be taken away, the more it will cost you. Tip fees are not cheap and are set to increase again.
5. Keep your neighbors informed, remember you are going to live at this block. Its good to work in with the neigbours should you have any boundary issues. At New Home Building Brokers we have come across this a lot, it is critical to keep relations in check with neighbouring blocks. Hear what Ken had to say about neighbour disputes during his North Beach build.
6. Watch out for the old fences falling over once the bock is vacant. On a newly cleared block wind can push these old fences over very easy. So work in with the Building Broker and the builder to have the new ones up ASAP or install temporary fencing.
7. The verge is not something the demolition companies will touch, in fact whatever cross over driveway you have will stay. So you need to allow extra cost from the builder to remove and repair any damage to driveway, kerbs and footpaths.
8. Demolition companies do not touch anything on the boundary. So if you have any separation of homes walls and starts, you need to get a quote from a builder to do this and make good to keep all parties happy. This as a rule normally cost $4K to 10K depending on the work in involved. NHBB has some great Perth builders who get this done and for a very good price.
9. When the home is demolished and the block is clear, make sure the demotion company changes the bucket and sifts the sand 700mm deep. You want to be sure nothing is left in the soil or that anything is buried. It can cost you a lot if the fill contains rubble ot plant matter and builder informs you at site.
10. That said don’t get fooled by demolition companies trying to back charge. Watch the video below, the demolition company involved wanted to back charge the client for the removal of unclean fill. What is clear in this video is that the tree roots appear to have been placed in the fill. While this was an isolated incident, it pays to have someone who understands every aspect of the building industry on your side. At NHBB we don’t let builders or demolition companies get away with this.
At new Home Building brokers we have many more tips we can share with you to get this process done and in a cost effective and timely manner.
The best thing to say to any demolition contractor in writing is “ we want it cleared peg to peg with a 700mm sift”
If you'd like to know more about the demolish and rebuild process, feel free to contact the team at NHBB.
Tristan Kirkham | Managing Director
Tristan has managed some of Australia’s major building companies, both project and private. His committment to customer service and providing market leading communication product for the home building industry has led to a role as regular Judge in the HIA Green Smart, HIA Kitchen & Bathroom Awards and the major Housing Awards. Winning multiple awards throughout his career in the housing industry, he is dedicated to improving the industry standards and practices. Tristan's vision is to provide a better way to build homes for all parties.
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