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With multiple land developments offered around the Illawarra there are many clients taking the leap and buying land to build their dream home.

There are numerous builders offering a selection of custom design homes. Clients will often select a custom design home and the builder will offer flexibility within the design to enable you to ‘tweak’ the home to your liking. This option sounds great, but you need to be mindful that changes to the internal layout or adding on additional space requires variation to the standard form plans.

If Council approval to the ‘stock standard’ home has already been obtained, changes to these plans (including council fees) will be an additional cost to you. Delays with commencement of your build due to these variations will also come at a cost to you.

As exciting as it is to design your own home, the downside is the delay with construction commencement whilst waiting for the amended design plans. We have unfortunately seen a number of clients over the years receive variation invoices from their builder, charging more for products due to a price increase because of the delayed order, and for time due to such delays.

You need to keep in mind that a builder will quote to construct your home for an agreed cost provided the build is carried out within the agreed time frame. Seeking changes, upgrading say, bathroom cabinetry to non-standard fixtures that are on back order for months, will delay the builder’s contract period and, in turn cost you more money.

When building your dream home, you should be mind of the timing provisions of your building contract and be realistic with variations as it may impact your hip pocket.