Blog post

Test your building know-how

26 September 2017

You don’t need to be a know-it-all if you’re planning to build a new home (that’s our job!), but understanding a few of the technical terms can help you make some of those early decisions with extra confidence.

Whether you’ve got your eye on a sprawling bush block, have snapped up a neat and tidy site in a new estate, or are planning to demolish an old house to make way for a new one, you’ll no doubt have come across some key words and phrases.

Our design and construction teams are a mine of information and they love questions about anything to do with home building. So we asked them for a list of the technical terms people ask about the most.

Not all the terms will necessarily apply to your project, but here’s a handy cheat sheet to help you build your building know-how.

SRC stands for site related costs. These are the costs associated with getting your site ready to build on. They typically involve items such as earthworks, land surveys, retaining walls and soil tests, and connecting power, water and sewerage. We’ll itemise everything so you can budget for these from the start.

Earthworks refer specifically to the work we need to do to make sure your block is firm, level and ready to build on. They may include clearing the block, levelling it and digging out any rock or tree stumps. If you’re building on a sloping site, earthworks may include cutting and filling to create a level area of land to build on.

Soil testing is necessary to establish how stable or ‘reactive’ the soil is and what sort of sub-floor your new home will require. Sandy soils will react differently to clay-based soils, for example, but we can determine this for you and plan accordingly from the start.

Footing upgrades may be necessary depending on the results of the soil tests. They usually involve placing the footings deeper into the soil to create the firm foundation needed. Again, we’ll factor this in from the start.

Bush fire requirements. If your block is in an area that has been designated by the State Government as a bush fire prone area, we will make sure the design and specification of your new home complies with all the relevant requirements. This may include specifying particular materials for the roof, windows, doors and external walls, for example.

Storm water provision is necessary to manage water run-off from your roof when it rains heavily. There are a number of ways this can be done, from installing soakwells to designing a garden that includes permeable paving and pebbled paths.

Keen to know about an aspect of building that we’ve not covered here?

Remember, there’s no such thing as a silly question (and we promise never to give a silly answer), so feel free to contact us now with your building-related query.

Any questions?

Simply fill out the form and we will be in touch.