Some common questions answered
Getting your house plans drawn can be a little daunting, so we have put together a few answers to help you out. Please take this purely as a guide. Actual prices may vary, but this will at least give you a ball park figure to work with.
01. What's the process?
First things first, have a realistic think about your budget and stick to it. Armed with that figure, approach WOLLONGONG DRAFTING about what you want to do. We will tell you what the potential issues are, and we will design your project with your budget in mind. Too often the job gets approved for construction, you get quotes from your builder, its WAY out of your budget, and you have to redesign. Once you have a concept in mind, it gets drafted into a set of house plans ready to lodge for approval.
02. Approval from whom?
You have 2 options, your Local Council, or Private Certifying Authorities (PCA). The nature of the job and its location dictates who you can use. For instance, if your project complies with 100% of council's regulations, and you're not in an area affected by floods, bushfire, landslip etc, you can use a PCA. In all other cases you need to use council. To find out if you are in an affected area just jump on your local council's web site and find your block in the MAPPING section.
If it is decided you need Council, they will split your application into 2 parts, the DA (Development Application) and the CC (Construction Certificate). The DA portion HAS to be approved by council, the CC does not. You can get the Private certifier to approve the CC for you. You just need to comply with the issues council bring up as part of the DA process.
03. I have an approval, now what?
Once you have the approval, then you can start talking to builders. Getting 3 quotes is difficult in todays market. So a better option is to ask them for a 'ballpark' amount. This gives you an indication of how busy they are, and if they want the work. When selecting a builder it helps if the builder and the PCA know each other. A good working relationship between these two guys is worth its weight in gold. WOLLONGONG DRAFTING know many builders in the area. We'll find the right one for your project.
04. what's included in our prices?
We provide all the documents, forms, and time required by either council or the private certifier to get approval for construction. That includes the following:
- Site inspections / detailed measure up of existing house if needed.
- A site plan: Showing setbacks, footprint, neighbours etc.
- Floor plan: A plan showing the internal configuration of your project.
- Elevations: Elevation views of all sides of the project.
- Section: A cut away view of the internal workings of your project.
- Shadows: If required, a plan showing what kind of shadows your project makes.
We allow you to make as many changes as you need to the plans to make sure they are exactly like you wanted prior to lodging with council. Once lodged however, we limit the amount of changes we make to the plans.
- Completion of council forms.
- Statement of environmental effects.
- Electronic copies of plans in PDF.
- Demolition and construction waste management plan.
Once all the documents have been completed WOLLONGONG DRAFTING will lodge the application with council and babysit it through the process. If additional details are required outside the normal scope of works we will charge at an agreed hourly rate. Jobs vary in complexity, therefore we don't guarantee approval for every application, however we will know very early on if there any potential issues to address, and make sure we give ourselves the best change of getting the concept approved.
05. WHAT OTHER COSTS SHOULD I EXPECT?
Jobs vary in complexity however the following costs are an approximation based on a large extension / single story house.
Additional to our costs you will need the following;
- Council fees. $ 800 - 1500
- PCA fees. $ 1200 - 1800
Depending on the scale of the you may need the following.
- Surveyors, $ 1100 - 1500
- Engineering. $ 500+
- BASIX assessment (Only needed if construction is over $50k) - $350
If your block is in a bushfire area, or prone to land instability you will need the following.
- Bush fire report, $1000 - 1200
- Geotech assessment, $1200 - 1800
At wollongong drafting we are both trades people and building designers from the illawarra, that saw a gap in the market. The need for high quality house plans at an affordable price.