Top 10 reasons to build not buy

1. Pick your own plan

Every detail can be chosen by you, from the number of bedrooms to the knocker on the front door. Decide what you want, and create a building plan that reflects your dream home.

2. Covered by a warranty

New buildings, fixtures and fittings come with manufacturers warranties, all of which you can take advantage of. Feel secure in the knowledge that if something goes wrong with the building, you know who to call.

3. Pick your builder

Review potential builders and meet up to decide on the right person for the job. You want a trusted advisor, not necessarily a buddy, to help you build your home.

4. Satisfy all the building regulations

Building regulations are updated every few years with the latest in safety and efficiency ideals. Building to the latest specs will get you a more efficient building that reflects industry best practice.

5. More efficient

Technology and systems improves over time, becoming more efficient and offering more features. Take advantage of solar, the latest in water heating systems and the latest in communication.

6. No surprises

You know what you home is made of and there are no surprises lurking in the attic. No asbestos, lead paint or other hazardous materials to think about.

7. It’s new

Everything is clean and brand spanking new. You’re the first in the bath tub and first to cook in the kitchen, and the first to make great memories in your new house.

8. Plan around your family

Only you know how you’ll use the building for years to come. Need extra rooms for regular guests, or need to be able to easily repurpose when the kids move out? No problem, every detail can be accounted for now, and for the future.

9. Resale value

New homes often have a higher resale value because they generally come with less problems and are built to suit the Aussie lifestyle.

10. Pride

There’s nothing quite like the pride you’ll feel when showing people around the home you designed around your family. A new home reflects who you are in the structure, layout and design features, not just the wallpaper.

5 Easy Ways to Add Value to Your Home

Presumably, if you want to sell your house, you’ll be looking into ways to add value to your home through remodelling or renovating. Before you start making any alterations to the structure of your home, you’ll need to take some time to effectively plan out your strategy beforehand.

Of course, there are some decisions that will be preferable to others and not every upgrade requires a large financial investment to begin with. However, almost all of them – regardless of size – require patience and accuracy if they are to increase your home’s estimated value.


General Considerations to Keep in Mind

If you aim to increase curb appeal, you may find that your home attracts more buyers. When this happens, just understand that what they are really interested in is the interior of the home and its potential. While any cosmetic upgrades you make will ultimately impact your ROI, that doesn’t mean a $30,000 kitchen renovation will improve the value of a $300,000 home.

In fact, according to the 2013 Houzz and Home survey, there are a few improvements that if implemented correctly are statistically likely to appeal to a broader audience. With that in mind, let’s discuss the easiest ways to increase the value of your property.


1. Remodel the Kitchen or Bathroom

These are the two rooms in the home that affect and determine whether or not a potential buyer will make an offer. Generally speaking, if you are only going to renovate a single room on the property, make sure it is either one of these two rooms – preferably both.

It can be as simple as repainting the walls in a modern color palette, installing new cabinets or retiling the floor – in which case you may require the help of a skilled professional. However, it doesn’t have to be a big undertaking.


2. Add to the Atmosphere With an Accent Wall

In some cases you may not have a lot of room to work with and it might be more important for you to work with what you already have. Specifically, you can turn a wall into a feature or accent wall with a simple splash of color.

Ensure that the color palette you choose compliments the permanents in the room, such as the carpeting, and aim for something that will reduce or eliminate any potential owner’s desire to repaint it.


3. DIY Projects Everyone Can Do

Not everything you need to do to your home involves arduous renovations or remodelling. You can actually carry out a few small DIY home improvement projects using relatively accessible equipment.

These are mainly maintenance-related concerns, but to prospective buyers, any work done to improve fixtures and foundations can have an immediate and positive effect on the home’s value.


4. Incorporate Energy-Efficient Fixtures

Decorative yet functional ceiling fans can be a beautiful thing. The same can be said of lighting fixtures and those final touches that might not seem like much at first, but really help to bring a room together in a modern and sophisticated way.

Upgrading fixtures and installing energy-saving light bulbs – or better still, installing solar power –serves to create a functional aesthetic. It can also reduce bills and will most assuredly increase your property’s value.


5. Low-Maintenance Garden Landscaping

Do not neglect the exterior of your home, as garden maintenance can be a real issue for some. Deciding to implement hardscaping as a way to improve the versatility of your home’s outdoor living areas is a sure-fire way to improve the overall worth of your home.

Thinking green and purchasing native flora is a great way to push the aesthetic – and value – just that little bit further.

Ultimately, everything depends on how much value you’re hoping to add to your home and what budget you have to work with. While this will fluctuate from person to person, undertaking these smaller projects will be well worth your time in addition to being well worth the financial investment.

Why install Energy Efficient Appliances?

It doesn’t matter if you’re building a new home in the Whitsundays or renovating, you should maximise the opportunity buy installing energy efficient appliances throughout your home. It’s true that there will be a larger upfront cost for energy efficient appliances; however you will likely make your money back over the life time of the appliance.

Below is an example from the annual running cost of two common appliances is compared:

Firstly let’s look at clothes dryers, there are 3 main types:

  1. Heat Pump Dryers – a type of condenser dryer which are considered the most energy efficient of the three. They work in a similar way to the condenser dryer.
  2. Condenser Dryers –these extract the moisture from the wet clothes and drain it off which prevents the need for ventilation as with the vented clothes dryers.
  3. Vented clothes dryers – are the most common dryer and are usually the cheapest to buy. They work by blowing hot air over the clothes, creating moisture which makes these suitable for use in rooms with a window or extraction fan. If you decide to go with this option and are using an extraction fan the energy used to power the extraction fan needs to be taken into consideration when calculating the annual running cost.

Below you can see that the most energy efficient appliance is the heat pump dryer, there is a larger upfront cost to purchase the dryer however you will save on your energy bills for years to come. In the below example you can save up to 65% on your drying energy bills by purchasing the more energy efficient model.

saveenergysave money 1

Annual running cost is based on 52 drying cycles

 Looking at the number of energy stars an appliance has will give you an indication of how efficient an appliance is, look at the below example from the Save Energy Save Money website:

The first appliance has 3 stars and is the most energy efficient and the third appliance has 2 stars which makes it the least energy efficient in this example.

The most energy efficient dishwasher is going to cost you and extra $95 to purchase upfront than the least energy efficient. However it will cost you $29 less per year to run, which means it would only take you just over 3 years to make this money back in running costs.

If the average appliance lasts around 8 years you will actually save yourself $138 over the life of the appliance.


Based on 365 wash cycles per year

Perhaps a simpler way to look at it would be to work out the lifetime cost of the appliance, which is simply the cost of the appliance + (annual running cost x 8).

In the 1st example the lifetime cost would be $1093.12

In the 2nd example the lifetime cost would be $1138.99

In the 3rd example the lifetime cost would be $1237.12

Imagine doing this with all your appliances think how much you could save on your energy bills.

Julie Moore director of Save Energy Save Money