Case study: Securing a lower build cost to save a dream home in Adelaide

Updated: Jan 9, 2020

When residential building plans are priced up and come in well over budget, it can be a devastating blow for those seeking to make their dream home a reality.

That’s what happened to a family recently who were hoping to build a new home on a block in the western suburbs of Adelaide, South Australia.

Fortunately, they turned to Adelaide Build Assist, who were able to formulate a home-saving strategy.

Our client's need

The client had completed the architectural plans and engineering documentation and secured all required approvals they needed for the project – a considerable investment of time, money and emotional energy.

It wasn’t until the price estimate from the builder came in that they realised the costs were well outside their budget.

This is an all too common situation that people find themselves in. All of that effort and expense – now what?

Sometimes there’s a way to extend the budget or take on more debt, but many people in this position are already stretched and this simply isn’t an option.

All that’s left is frustration, confusion and disappointment.

Fortunately, there is another way – working with an experienced building advisor gives you options.

The property in the western suburbs of Adelaide

The challenge

The first step was to ask the client to bring in all the documentation relating to the project and talk with them extensively to understand their needs, wants, budgets and timeframes.

Through this process we discovered that the plans that had been drawn up actually didn’t match what the client wanted, which gave us scope to make revisions that better fitted with the client’s need and provide savings through subtle changes to the floor plan and building materials.

By re-considering the design we were able to save almost 10 per cent of the floor area while only losing four per cent of the usable area, which reduced the building materials required including costly structural beams, and delivered a direct saving to the budget.

We were also able to tap into our extensive network of building suppliers to achieve better quotes, making further savings to the budget.

Finally, we conducted a competitive tender process using the amended plans with our network of builders – firms that are trusted, boutique, financially-stable with a great track record of success and credibility. As a result, we were able to achieve a final build price below the client’s original budget.

We were also able to work with the local council to submit the changes to the plans as a variation, rather than starting from scratch, which also saved a significant amount of time.

The key learnings

This is a situation that’s all too common. The sad reality is that when people receive a quote for the build that is well in excess of their budget, most decide to cut their losses and walk away - a devastating outcome.

We always encourage people to engage an experienced building advisor as early as possible in the process, to ensure and good plan is in place and expectations are managed correctly.

But for those who go their own way then find themselves stuck, partnering with a building advisor can still lead to significantly reduced costs through strategically reviewing plans, leveraging relationships with suppliers and conducting a competitive, independent tender process.

How we can help

Has your dream home hit budget problems? Or are you starting out, and want the smoothest building experience possible?

ABA can help.

Contact us for a no obligations discussion about your project.