After living in an apartment for years, Rick and Ryan’s search for a builder began when the block of land they had purchased meant they couldn’t go with larger project builders. After engaging three different builders and telling them what they wanted in a home without success, the guys ended up finding Adam Toth from Hotondo Homes Rochedale in Queensland, and they couldn’t have been happier!
“We ended up going with Adam for a few different reasons. Mainly with the builder who had the passion to build it more so than the others. We could tell he wanted to build it for himself as well as for us, he was really passionate about it. We’d never built before, and everyone says it’s the hardest thing you’ll ever do, so we really wanted to make sure we had a good connection with our builder, because you don’t want to go through it with someone you can’t comfortably talk with or who feels like it’s going to make the process even tougher,” Ryan told us.
The Perfect Design
Originally Rick and Ryan didn’t realise it was so achievable or affordable to build their own home, but after buying the block of land suitable for a split level home, they quickly found out that a lot of builders wouldn’t touch it. The guys knew exactly what they wanted, and after chatting to Adam and working with the draftsperson, they made a couple of little changes and settled on a design. Ryan explained that the main living area is upstairs, which is at street level, so that they can spend most of their time up there and capitalise on the amazing views.
Their master suite is on this level as well, and they wanted the laundry up there also. “This means most of what we don’t use every day which are the three spare bedrooms, family bathroom and another sitting area are downstairs and makes it sort of like apartment living upstairs but on a larger scale than where we came from. Downstairs is sort of like our guest quarters. One of those three bedrooms downstairs is also what I use for my office which is good – it’s disconnected from the main living space, so it feels like I can go down and work there and step away from it. I might spend about 50% of my time working from home in my sales role,“ Ryan said.
A Great Working Relationship
“Working with Adam was really, really good. It ended up feeling like a friendship so you could talk honestly, it felt like he was always giving us his honest opinion instead of just steering us a particular way which some builders would do to benefit them or cut a corner and paint it as a better picture to you. He’s got a lot of experience behind him with the other things he’s built and we got the chance to see some photos of some of the other things he’s built and those photos spoke for themselves,” Ryan told us. “We’re so appreciative that Adam was happy to have us work so closely with him on it.”
Ryan also mentioned how grateful they were to work with a builder who was happy for them to source things from other suppliers to suit the look and feel they were hoping to achieve. Working so closely with Adam meant they were able to visit the site regularly to inspect the progress. “Adam was happy for us to be on site quite regularly, at times it was once a week, so we constantly felt like we were involved, knew what was happening, and knew what was about to happen so there were no surprises for us,” Ryan said.
Ryan explains “sustainable features were a focus for us, but it was also something that threw a couple of challenges at us. The block of land is adjacent to a nature corridor so we wanted a lot of large windows to take in those views, but then obviously the more glass you use the less energy efficient the home’s going to be so it was just about making that comfortable balance between using those large glass windows but then finding the right insulation, which was tough.” Ryan also said they didn’t experience any issues with the council, which made the building process pretty easy, and being able to be on site regularly meant there were no surprises for Rick and Ryan because they knew what was happening at any given time.
Standout Features & Celebratory Drinks
“The bar area was a bit of a dream. We entertain a lot and if you can see in the glass cabinet there a collection of rum I’ve been collecting. I used to work at Bundaberg Rum, and sort of started a collection then and it’s constantly grown, but I’ve never had somewhere to actually display it. It’s usually boxed up, so it’s been handy!” Ryan said. The guys got the keys to their home in October, 2019. “We got to celebrate Christmas in our new home. Most people in the street had Christmas at their place because we’re in a new development so no one has been here longer than about a year, making it very festive!”
Congratulations Rick and Ryan! We’re so happy you’ve had such an amazing building experience with Adam and the team at Hotondo Homes Rochedale, and know you’ll spend a lifetime creating happy memories in your absolutely stunning new home! If you’re ready to start your own building journey, head over to the Hotondo Homes website and search for a builder in your local area today.