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Frequently Asked Questions


Do I Need Plans?

Generally, yes. Any significant change/alteration/addition to a building requires a set of professionally prepared plans and elevations. Plans include calculated measurements such as heights, elevations as well as fixture locations, reference points to boundaries, existing services along with material types, finishes, site details and so on which define the work.

Plans put on paper the design in a fixed format allowing for accurate costing, planning and assembly by the builder and his team. Plans also form part of the works agreement between the builder and the owner and are typically required by council for the kind of projects BFL does. Exceptions may be building repairs, non structural improvements and remedial works. The more detailed the plans the less disappointments are likely.

Built for Living offer a design and construct service to take you from concept to plans to the formal development application necessary to start the building process. 


Do I Need An Architect?

No. Not if you already have plans. However, if you want a well thought out and uniquely designed home with many valuable features, engaging an architect may well be worth the extra investment. It’s important to make sure your architect and your builder are in mutual agreement on the way forward with your project. Note more straightforward plans can also be prepared by drafting or design professionals who understand the workings of a home construction. They are also able to prepare plans ready for council submission.


How Long Will It Take?

This depends on the size of the project and can be advised after a site visit. Generally for the construction portion you will need to allow months and a year or more for larger complex projects. After plans have been prepared and agreed on, building approval for a DA will be governed by the relevant councils time line – somewhere from 3 – 6 months at minimum. It is possible to get fast tracked approval within around 3 -4 weeks if you stay within the restrictive guidelines of the states complying development controls. Other significant impacts on construction time that need to be considered are things like poor weather, labour and material supply delays, public and annual holidays. However careful planning and smart building management will help mitigate the impacts. BFL can advise an accurate time to build during your building proposal.


How Much Will It Cost?

New construction can range from $1900 – $3800 per m2 for a complete project. Note that with custom building, each job is different and costs depend on things like site access, time to ‘get out of the ground’, material selection, quality, job size, existing caveats, deadlines, engineers fee’s, existing hazardous materials, if owners live-in during construction and so on.  However, with the right match, what should stand out is the value BFL brings to the job.


Can I Live In My Home During Building Works?

This will be determined by practical factors and whether or not you are prepared to endure extended makeshift living – while one occupant may derive enjoyment by ‘roughing it’, it may make the other occupants quite miserable and ‘waspish’.

​What is the extent of demolition? Will existing services be removed? – shower, bath, sink, kitchen, bedrooms? What time of year are you building? (think of cold winter and missing walls), how well could you cope with the daily disruption of subcontractors, noise, dust and hazardous rubbish?

If you can secure a sanctuary within your home then it could work. If there are perceived rent savings by staying, they may diminish with the additional building costs providing for ongoing allowances around the ever present occupants. Swift progress is more achievable with a vacant building.


How Soon Can You Start?

Please contact Built for Living to discuss your anticipated schedule and how that may be accommodated.


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