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Once you’ve decided to build a new home, and you’ve selected land in the perfect location, there are a lot of things to consider about the design of your home. Choosing a design to suit your block of land can seem like a difficult decision to make, but once you consider each aspect of where your future home will be built, you’ll be able to find a home design that suits the land and your home requirements perfectly. We’ve got some great tips below to help you along in the process!

Land Size

Land
Considering the overall land size will determine the size of your home, but also consider the area around your home. If you have a family and would like an alfresco area, a large garden or space to build a pool later on then you’ll need to think about the positioning of your open-plan living areas to maximise indoor/outdoor living. If you’re building on a smaller block of land, particularly one that’s narrow, outdoor space may need to be sacrificed to ensure your home meets all your needs and suits your lifestyle.

Orientation

Land
Think about where the front of your home will be and which way the land is oriented with the sun. The living areas should be north-facing to catch the afternoon sun and give your open-plan areas lots of natural light. If you have an alfresco area, try to position it in a location where it will benefit from the afternoon and evening sun, ensuring it will be in the perfect spot for entertaining. Bedrooms should be east-facing to receive the first light of the day as you wake, which will also position them away from the hot afternoon sun, keeping them cool in the warmer months.

Sloping Land

Land
If you’ve decided to build on a sloping block of land, the most important thing to consider is how the land falls. Designing your home so that the flat part of the land houses the garage and the bedrooms means you can enter the home at ground level, then position the living areas and kitchen higher up on the slope to take advantage of the views. The gradient of the land will also determine whether or not your home will need to be built on stilts to elevate it, or if you will need to cut into the land to create a more even surface to build on.

Location

land
To make sure you maximise the positives of your location, consider the surroundings to determine which house design is going to suit the location of the land. If you live near the beach, you may want to build a split-level home with a reverse living layout. Having the kitchen and main living spaces, as well as a covered balcony area upstairs means you can take full advantage of the sea breeze each day. On hot days being able to open up the doors and windows upstairs to let the cool change in will make living on the coast feel like a beach holiday every day! If your land is located in a rural area with lots of open space, having the main living areas upstairs will give you perfect views of the sweeping hills, making your home a relaxing place to come home to.

Selecting the perfect block of land to build on is the first exciting step in your home building journey, and ensuring you consider each aspect of the land will help you make an informed decision about designing a home that has the best layout and surrounding space for your lifestyle. For home design ideas and tips, visit the Hotondo Homes website for inspiration.

Just 200 metres down the road from their old home, Frank and Debra Cartledge’s prized piece of land sat waiting for them.

For over 12 years it remained vacant, awaiting a time for the Invermay couple to proceed building their dream home.

For a home years in the making, there was every chance it would never live up to their expectations, but the impressive façade, amazing floor plan and beautiful finishes resulted in a stunning home with all the right touches.

“The best part of the whole experience was the flexibility, we could change whatever we wanted and nothing was a problem for Hotondo Homes,” Debra said.

“We spoke to another builder and they were not flexible at all. We wanted to make the home ours, there were a few specific things we really wanted because it was an acreage block, and Hotondo Homes accommodated them all.”

 

dream home

 

The stunning Stockton 322 is an incredible acreage home featuring four bedrooms, three living areas, two bathrooms and a powder room. With a few adjustments including larger windows to take in the beautiful views, bigger bedrooms and even the installation of a wood heater, the couple are delighted to call this place home.

“We got along really well with the team at Hotondo Homes Ballarat, who were even able to take us down to a display home to show us something tangible,” Frank said.

“Our block also had a few overlay and sloping issues, and the team were able to walk us through how they would address them.”

A mix of beautiful, neutral colours is seen throughout the home. The white walls and light coloured tiles and kitchenware creates a spacious and open feel, which works in harmony with the striking floorboards and custom wood heater that help add a warmth to the area.

Topped off with beautiful pieces of wooden furniture and high quality finishes, the charming home emits a modern yet country charm.

“The best part of the whole experience was the flexibility, we could change whatever we wanted and nothing was a problem for Hotondo Homes.” – Debra Cartledge

For Frank and Debra, the large walk-in pantry, big ensuite and the entry located to the side of the home were all must-haves.

“Luckily for us, this design ticked a lot of boxes with just the standard inclusions, and we then added few of our own,” Frank said.

The expansive alfresco space, large double garage, powder room for guests and plenty of storage room were other favourite features for the Invermay couple.

“Both of our girls moved out of home during the building process, meaning we have even more room now for friends, family and other guests to come around,” Debra laughs.

“Another great part is that one of the extra bedrooms has its own walk-in-robe, which is really good for our guests. There is so much room, we have even started calling one end of the house the ‘west wing’!”

 

dream home

 

The Ballarat team were awarded the 2015 Hotondo Homes Builder of the Year award, which is reflected in the quality build of Frank and Debra’s home. Living just down the road for the majority of the construction period meant the couple were able to enjoy watching their home go up from start to finish.

“Each stage that finished was another burst of excitement, it was great to watch it all come together,” Frank said.

“Brett was really fantastic to deal with, anything we wanted, he would accommodate. He adjusted the price as we added things, and they were always quick to get back to us.”

While Frank and Debra had completed several renovations and extensions previously, this was their first newly built home. Their children may have moved out before they had a chance to enjoy it, but the couple are loving their new home shared with their cat, dog, cows and even alpacas.

From a fleeting thought 12 years ago to the beautifully constructed design Frank and Debra now have before them, Hotondo Homes Ballarat have delivered a dream home that does not disappoint.

 

dream home

 

To start your own journey towards your dream home, contact Hotondo Homes today.

If you love the area you live in but not your home, you generally have three options: sell your house and move, renovate/extend your home, or knockdown and rebuild.

While all three options have benefits and drawbacks, considering a knockdown and rebuild project can be highly beneficial and profitable in the long run. It can also save you from the stress and costs involved in renovating or extending your existing home.

You don’t need to compromise on your dream home. Committing to a knockdown and rebuild project will mean you have the opportunity to create a home to suit your current taste and lifestyle, without having to move away from a location you love. It will also mean your home will be in line with current building and design standards.

 

knockdown and rebuild

 

Whether you want a cutting-edge modern design, a coastal-themed home or something with a bit of country charm, you can build it to your liking. You can also include features in the home that support your lifestyle such as an alfresco area for outdoor entertaining, an open-plan kitchen, a dining and living area, a study nook or extra bedroom for visiting guests.

Here are three other compelling reasons to knockdown and rebuild your home:

IT CAN BE LESS COSTLY

A knockdown and rebuild project can be cheaper than extending or renovating your current home. Why? Because a big renovation often means working in and around existing structures which can be costly.

Building a new home on your current block of land can also save you money when it comes to your heating and cooling bills. Installing new energy efficient products and appliances can save you thousands. You will also have the chance to introduce passive home design elements, which can further influence your bills.

THERE IS LESS RISK INVOLVED

Renovating or extending your existing home can be a risky process because they can often run over time and over budget. It’s often impossible to know what lies under the surface of your home or land until you rip it up, therefore you can run into unknown costs and time delays.

You may also be required to upgrade existing aspects of your home during the renovation or extension in order to adhere to current regulations, whereas a new home will always be built to current standards.

YOU CAN STAY IN THE SAME LOCATION

Most importantly, you can stay in an area you love! The design of your home shouldn’t be a barrier to living in the area where you are already established. Stay close to the amenities, schools and people you have come to know, and build your dream home to complement your lifestyle.

 

Visit hotondo.com.au to find out more.

Building a new home can be daunting for many home buyers.

You may only go through the process a handful of times throughout your life, so knowing all the ins and outs can be difficult. Read our top 6 things you need to know before building to arm yourself with the knowledge to get started!

 

1. Know all the numbers

Once you have a contract price for your house and land, you can work out how much you will need to borrow from a bank or finance lender, as well as your mortgage repayments. However, just because a bank says you can afford the loan, doesn’t mean you can. You need to consider additional costs such as the initial deposit, stamp duty, transfer duty, conveyancing costs, loan establishment costs and lenders mortgage insurance. There are also living expenses including gas, water, electricity, phone and internet bills, and if this is your first home, you may need to purchase new furniture and appliances. Know ALL the numbers when it comes to living in a new home before you commit.

 

READ MORE: SAVE MONEY ON YOUR BILLS IN 5 SIMPLE WAYS

 

2. Reputation of your builder 

Do your research and find a builder with a good reputation. Better yet, if you have family or friends who have built a home you love, ask them for a recommendation. Always speak to your builder about what you want in a home, what your expectations are and how they can help accommodate this. If required, get them to run through the entire build process so you know what to anticipate. Get to really know your builder, and find someone you can trust – this is a huge commitment!

3. Know your land

Aside from the obvious including the price of your land and its proximity to essential amenities, schools and family, there are a few other points to consider when looking at your land. If your land is in a bushfire zone, there can be additional costs associated when building your home to adhere to the appropriate regulations. If your land has a significant slope, retaining walls or excavation may be required, again, which again can cost you more. You may also find the estate you have bought in has certain requirements when it comes to landscaping, façade choices and even letterbox options! Speak to your land agent or builder to find out if any of these are applicable to you.

4. Build to resell

No matter how much you love the house you are building, you need to consider a time when you may need to sell or possibly rent it out. In particular, if you are a first home buyer it is ill-advised to make too many upgrades to the home, especially if it puts your home in a price bracket above that of your neighbourhood’s. It may not actually increase the value of your home. You should also be careful on your colour selections – ask yourself if what you are choosing will be appealing to others.

5. Green your home

Take the opportunity to upgrade any appliances you have to a higher star rating. This can include washing machines, dishwashers, fridges, taps and light globes. Any step you can take to reduce your carbon footprint and your energy bills is a positive one.

6. Passive design elements

You can also consider building materials and other passive design elements to reduce the cost of your bills. Ensuring your main living areas are orientated north allows the sun to naturally heat your home in winter and cool it in summer, as well as provide natural light. Installing eaves, good insulation, glazed windows and other such devices will all contribute to a better home.

 

READ MORE: A PASSIVE HOME DESIGN FOR AMAZING ENERGY SAVINGS

 

Do you have any other things you think you need to know before building? Let us know in the comments!

Difficult, sloping blocks can be time-consuming, impractical and costly to excavate.

Slab homes dug into a slope can often result in steep driveways, large retaining walls and an unattractive façade. In some cases it may even be impossible to reduce the slope of the land to the point you can build a standard home on it.

Split level, tri-level or bi-level homes are a great way to avoid these problems and fully utilise your land. Split level homes generally have two or three short flights of stairs, up to four separate levels and can be built to suit your specific block.

There are a huge range of benefits when building a split level home.

IT MAXIMISES SPACE

A split level home takes full advantage of all the space available on your land. Just like a double storey, the ability to build up means you can have a larger backyard without having to compromise on the size of your home. For those with pets or a beautiful pool or backyard aspirations, a split level home is a great option!

IT CAN BE MORE COST-EFFECTIVE

If your block of land has a significant slope, it can become quite costly to cut it to the requirements needed for a regular home. Unforeseen issues like poor soil or large rocks can increase your site costs too, meaning it can turn into a very expensive exercise.

IT OFFERS A UNIQUE DESIGN

Split level designs are quite unique and beautiful homes, which can be great for a family who are after something a little bit different. A split level home can be designed with the bedrooms located on one floor and the living space on another level to help create distinct zones. This can be good for families with children.

IT CAN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF LOCAL VIEWS

Homes that offer picturesque surroundings can also benefit from a split level home.  They can be designed to take full advantage of the land to help maximise the views, and can be specifically tailored to suit your land.

 

Split level home

 

Hotondo Homes’ Hillgrove range offers four brand new tri-level floor plans perfect for land with a difficult slope in any direction.

There is plenty of versatility in these kinds of designs to cater for many different lifestyles. Some of the floor plans feature living space zoned on the top level, while others have the bedrooms upstairs.

The largest design in the range, the Hillgrove 250, offers four bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms and a double garage. Cleverly zoned, the master bedroom is located on the entry level for privacy, while the kitchen, living and dining are on the lower floor and remaining bedrooms and the rumpus are on the upper floor.

Split level home

The design also comes in an alternate version, where the bedrooms are on the lower floor and the living area is on the upper.

View the Hotondo Homes full range of designs including split level homes at hotondo.com.au.


We would all love to have enough room in our backyard to host a pool, alfresco, garage, play area for the kids and entertainment zone for the adults. However with the growing trend leaning towards smaller blocks, you are more than likely going to end up with a smaller backyard.
To get the most out of your yard, follow some of these clever tips and tricks to create the illusion of space!

ZONE DIFFERENT AREAS

Zoning is the most effective way to utilise space. Separate your desired areas using tiles, floorboards or grass, and create natural boundaries with plants or in-built seating. Zoning provides structure and maximises space.

zoning


WALL ART

A beautiful backyard always requires some greenery, but it can take up precious space.  So if you can’t go out, why not go up? Using the same principle as a double storey home, save ground space by using your walls and fences to hang plants and décor from.


COMBINE INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING

Having matching tiles or floorboards flow from inside to outside makes you feel as though you are in one giant area. Bifold doors can open it further, and instantly increases the imagined size of both the outside, and inside, of your home.

consistency


CONSISTENCY

Matching the colours and textures of your backyard tiles to your home not only looks nice, but makes the area appear bigger. Larger tiles also give the illusion there is more space than what there actually is.

match

Contact your local Hotondo Homes builder here for more information on utilising space!

Once you decide you would like to build a new home you will undoubtedly come across the wonderful world of house and land packages. With only the single contract to deal with, fewer decisions to be made and the relatively quick build time, house and land packages offer a lot of appeal.

There are a few factors however that still need to be considered, so take the time to thoroughly examine which house and land package is best for you.

LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION

Before you go any further, stop and decide on a location that will best suit your lifestyle.

Important things to consider when selecting the location of your future home include what kind of public transport the area offers, distance to family and friends, whether there are schools and shops nearby, and if you enjoy a good walk with your pet make sure there are plenty of parklands available.

Make sure you have at least two or more potential neighbourhoods in mind so you have more house and land options to discuss with your builder.

YOUR BUILDERIMG_0793

  1. Are they licensed?
  2. Do they have insurance?

Always ask the above two questions before considering any builder. Do your research to ensure they are reputable and have good referrals. Once this all checks out you can begin to look at specific home designs.

SELECTING YOUR HOUSE AND LAND

Now comes the fun part, selecting your house and land. This can be broken down into two considerations:

Land – The slope of the land is a primary factor. Generally the steeper the block, the more it will cost to build. You should also ask the soil to be professionally inspected for its ability to support your home. Finally check the orientation of the block. When you build, main living areas should be facing north to catch the sun and help reduce heating and cooling costs.

House – Check out as many display homes as possible. Compare the designs and choose one that will best suit your lifestyle. Find out what it will cost you to change any aspects of the home you may wish to alter, and double check what features are included or not included such as the driveway, flooring or letterbox.

If possible aim for a fixed-price building contract to help avoid any unexpected fees.

For help selecting the best house and land package for you, speak to your local Hotondo Homes builder by clicking here.

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