5 Tips to Consider Before you Muck in!
So we have to stay put in beautiful Aotearoa due to COVID-19. That’s not all bad. Many of you will be spending your free time sprucing up your house for summer festivities, or to sell! Below are 5 top tips to consider during the planning stages before you muck in!
- Have you spoken to your architect or have a set plan to follow?
There’s the saying Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail. Have you 100% decided on what you want to renovate to improve your way of living? Our advice is to talk to your architect who will decipher exactly what you wish to achieve. Opening up the living area to the garden for more indoor-outdoor flow could be key for your growing family, or how many sunshine hours will the proposed new deck receive? Will the bathroom addition mean more light? Your architect will be able to help you put your vision into fruition – so we think it’s a must.
- Building consent and new changes
Did you know that exemptions to the Building Act came into effect at the end of August 2020? Even more of a reason to do that extension or renovation we think. Here are some of the more popular builds that no longer require consent from August 2020:
– A single story detached building such as a sleep out, green house or similar structure;
– Ground mounted solar array panels, perfect for harvesting those extra hours of sunlight in summer. This may depend on your zoning (urban or rural);
– A carport addition up to 40m squared;
– An awning up to 30m squared on a ground floor;
– A veranda or porch up to 30m squared on the ground floor;
– Outdoor fireplace or oven built to maximum of 2.5m and maximum cooking surface of 1m squared,
– + MORE!
- Does my renovation area contain Asbestos?
Asbestos products were used heavily in NZ from the 1960’s through to the 1980’s, and even until 1999! Under NZ Law, if you undertake a renovation on a building built pre-2000 you must have a professional undertake a survey to ensure you will not be exposing yourself, builders or your family to the deadly fibres. Our qualified IP402 Surveyors can undertake your asbestos surveys before you start DIY-ing. If you do find that you have asbestos material, that’s not all doom and gloom – there are ways to manage or remove it, depending on your plans for the house. Give us a call to discuss your plans.
- Do you know where your underground cables are?
Underground services run across most sections and include septic systems, electricity lines, fibre optic cable, telephone lines, sewer and water. Not all cables or services run down the same trenches. If you plan to dig, go online to view Dial B4 You Dig plans. Also, another tip is to carefully use only hand tools to dig down to at least 1m, as most services are buried within 0.3-0.6m below ground level. If you encounter uniform fine gravel or sand, you may be close to uncovering a service, so take care and proceed with caution!
- Budget Budget Budget
How much are you wanting to spend? Did you factor in the cost of your stainless steel nails for your coastal deck? Or your asbestos cladding removal and disposal? Here’s where cost can be blown out and leads us back to having a set plan. More often than not, builds of any kind tend to cost up to 20% more than initially planned for! Do your numbers and save or repurpose materials to make your build more sustainable.
Most of all have fun and make sure you have the time to devote to your renovation!