Final occupancy certificate, pools and puppies!

We’ve been working hard to get our landscaping finished off so that we can get our final occupancy certificate. We booked it in for today, which gave our Colin, our landscaper, a deadline to work towards. Actually, the inspection was … Continue reading

Merry Christmas!

Our first Christmas in our new home has been fantastic! Even with the continuous rain (which thankfully let up for Christmas Day and most of Boxing Day) nothing could dampen our spirits when we woke on Christmas morning. Santa may have left lots of gifts under the tree for the kids, but the best gift of all was our new home!

The house is now looking slightly more organised, too. Most boxes are now unpacked (with the exception of toys, which I’m just too scared to do!). The garage is still a work in progress, as is the office, but once we get furniture and storage options in then we’ll tackle them.

We have decided to put in a pool! That, I guess, is the biggest news! Oh, and that the media room is now fully set up with the projector and screen, and surround sound. It’s like being at the movies – talk about sensory overload! We had the family here yesterday for Boxing Day and the boys were in cricket heaven (so much so that most of them fell asleep on the lounge, but that’s another story).

We’ve had visits from a few Wisdom Tradies last week, to finish off a few things that needed doing. All was good – a small hiccup with some careless plumbers, but they were sorted out very quickly by The Amazing Joe, as well as their boss!

So now we have a week off before we have to go back to work, time to squeeze as much work into that week as possible! We’d love to start on the front yard, not sure how much we’ll achieve as they are forecasting rain all week (again), but we’ll see how we go.

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas, and wishing everyone the best for the New Year.

We’re Home!!!

We have moved in!! Last weekend in fact. A little later than we’d originally thought – our PCI uncovered a few things that needed to be rectified, and which couldn’t be done within the normal 7 days. So we were given a handover date of Thursday 24th November. Between the 11th and 24th the Wisdom tradies worked their proverbials off getting everything finished for us, and they did a fantastic job! We met Joe onsite on the morning of the 24th, after visiting Westpac to pick up our final cheque, and went through everything again. Most of the work had been completed, with only a handful of things still to be done.

The appliances were delivered that morning, our beautiful big oven and dishwasher, ready for installation the following day (after handover, for security reasons!).

So after going through the house again, we made our way to Narellan and FINALLY met The Lovely Sandi (who is still lovely…) We went through the handover within about 45 minutes, were presented with our keys and a lovely gift basket of chocolates, an ice bucket, some glasses and a bottle of Moet, and then VIOLA, we were the proud owners of our new home!

That afternoon was a bit of a blur, with deliveries starting. My in-laws helped us out with their van, and brought over all the flat packed furniture from Ikea that I’d purchased earlier in the week.

On Friday the house was full of tradies again, installing the appliances (oven, dishwasher and hot water). The air conditioner external unit was still on the production line so we had to wait until Monday for that to be installed (which we thought would be OK, but didn’t anticipate the weather being so warm over the weekend!)

Saturday was moving day. And down came the rain! I feared at one stage that we’d have to float our furniture to the house! Talk about stressful. It didn’t help that the removalist company I’d hired sent us 3 of the most careless, untrained people we’d ever met, who didn’t do anything to take care of, or protect, our furniture. As a result, after lots of dropped boxes and deeply scratched and gouged furniture, we sacked them after the first load, and sent them on their way.

Luckily we found another mover who could help us out, and by the time they were available the rain had stopped and the sun came out. And these guys were FANTASTIC! By 5pm, we had everything in. Boxes were too wet to take upstairs on the carpet so everything was piled in to the garage and the downstairs living areas. Now the fun begins – unpacking!

After being here now for a week, we’ve made some really good progress. I built all the furniture through the week, and unpacked a HEAP of boxes. We still have to organise the pantry – didn’t realise we had so many appliances! The kids think that Christmas has come early because of the toys that they’re rediscovering after being in storage for the last 18 months. I’m hoping to get rid of a lot of them before they realise though, as there are way too many toys!

And the most important thing? We’re home. Our rental was never home for us, it was just a means to an end. I haven’t felt “at home” since we moved from our house last year.

But now, we’re home…

It’s a date!

Yep, we have a date. It’s still a slightly fluid date, but it’s something. We have our PCI (Practical Completion Inspection) scheduled for Friday 11th November. That’s only 2 weeks away. And then handover is generally 7 days after PCI, which gives us a handover date of 18th November. YIKES! Unless we find anything majorly wrong during PCI, this timetable shouldn’t change.

And we’ve been keeping a very close eye on things, so unless something major happens between now PCI, we will be moving in 3 weeks time.

The house is looking fantastic! The bathroom and laundry tiling is now complete, and the painters have finished. The scaffolding is coming down so it’s starting to look less like a construction site. The toilets, spa and bath should go in this week. The tilers will be back to do the floors. The plumber and the electrician have both finished. And I think the last thing will be the carpet. Externally, the driveway should start this week or early next week, and the site should be cleaned. The house cleaners have been booked for a few days before PCI. We have now selected the supplier for our window coverings – Craig from All Blind Solutions also happens to be a new neighbour, and from what we’ve been told by others who have had their shutters and blinds installed by him, he does a great job. And if we’re lucky, we may even have the shutters by Christmas!

We’ve also contacted Telstra and have an appointment for their technician to come in and set up the home phone. I’ll be calling the energy company this week to get that all sorted too, so I don’t have to leave anything to the last minute.

Now we just need to find a good quality, affordable (if there’s such a combination) removal company, and we’ll be ready. Oh, and give notice to our landlord (can’t WAIT to do that!!).

I have to say, I’m a little bit overwhelmed by my every-growing “to do” list. It’s very busy at work at the moment, hubby is going through a transition to a new company / new job (which he starts 3 days after PCI – guess who’s going to be unpacking by herself!), and now we have to pack and move. But we thrive on challenges, and I know it will all be worth it.

Our house is almost ready for us to turn it into a home. How good is that?!

Craig Gardiner
All Blind Solutions
M: 0414 648 944

Things I’m looking forward to…

As usual I’ve been stalking the site every day this week. On Wednesday the plumbers were onsite and had dug huge trenches all around the house for the stormwater. There was so much dirt piled up in the front of the house that I couldn’t even see the garage! On Thursday an enormous pit had been dug in front of the garage, that was at least 6ft deep, which was for stormwater also. And on Friday they were busy backfilling all the holes that had been dug.

We went for another drive today and discovered that our frame has been delivered, and will hopefully start being erected tomorrow! We also very briefly met one of our close neighbours who are at about the same stage of construction as us.

So now that our house has officially started construction, I’ve started thinking a lot about all the things that I’m looking forward to. I find myself constantly saying “I can’t wait until …”

Some of the things that I can’t wait for are:

  • A pantry that is larger than my current kitchen
  • More than one room for the family to relax in
  • A dedicated play room for the children, including room to pack their toys away out of sight afterwards
  • A place for us all to plug our laptops in, and leave them, instead of having to move them out of the way all the time
  • Bedrooms for everyone, so I don’t have to keep moving the cot into our bedroom on weekends
  • Privacy – no neighbours directly behind us looking into our windows all the time
  • A laundry big enough to also sort & fold the washing, instead of having to pile it up onto the dining table all the time
  • A dining table that can actually be used for dining!
  • Getting all our furniture out of storage
  • A dishwasher!
  • Unlimited hot water
  • A huge shower
  • A spa bath (and hopefully some time to use it)
  • Lots of cupboard space in the kitchen
  • A huge linen press
  • A walk in robe with rails that don’t fall down if ¬†you hang too many clothes on them
  • A nice backyard for the kids to play in, and an equally lovely playground across the road
  • Creating a home, without having to ask permission from the landlord
I could go on and on, you get the picture… For almost a year now, we’ve been living in a way that is significantly different to what we’re used to, and whilst it’s been ok, it’s been less than ideal. We have lived on top of each other, there is no room for anyone to have some ‘me time’ away from everyone, which has always been important to me. So to know that, very soon, we’re going to have space again, is fantastic!