How this Brisbane family built their Home Extension FAST + within budget

How this Brisbane family built their Home Extension FAST + within budget
October 17, 2019 Fiona

We recently completed a home extension for a family in Bray Park, who had outgrown their existing home.

With four children, nearly all of them teenagers, the McDougall family needed far more space, however they weren’t willing to compromise on location – having spent the last decade building a life in Bray Park, they understandably wanted to stay here.

The decision was made to investigate a home extension to accommodate their growing family. After talking to many builders who didn’t seem cut out for the job, the McDougalls got in touch with Eco Building Services with a brief and a budget they weren’t willing to change.

The Problem

We met with the McDougall family in October for an initial discussion in which we had to tell them what they didn’t want to hear – their budget wasn’t enough to turn their dream home extension into reality. However, once we separated their wants from their needs, we were able to create a simple step by step process for a collaborative approach to designing their extension within budget.

After signing them up to a preliminary agreement, we worked closely with our designer Tanya to create a selection of concept plans and a feasibility study to evaluate the interim budget. These numbers came in very close to the upper limit and after talking through the layout and learning about how the McDougalls used their existing home, we realised the plans needed tweaking.

We reapproached Tanya to make some amendments and resubmitted these plans. Once we had walked the family through the plans and they were satisfied with everything, it was time for construction and engineering plans.

When we priced the project with the completed engineering plans taken into account, we were shocked to find the engineering threatened to derail the budget and throw off the entire project. We took some time to sit with the engineer and discuss alternative bracing methods and requirements.

During this meeting we managed to shave $17,800 off the quote, bringing the final fixed price contract for this home extension, back into budget.

The Solution

We were honoured to then sit down with the McDougalls and walk them through our comprehensive home extension proposal. As this was over 45 pages long, we needed a few hours to ensure they understood all of the inclusions and exclusions.

The schedule allowed them to see the different stages and understand how these would affect their lives, meaning they could plan around the build.

One of the biggest hurdles we faced was the issue of noise, as the youngest kids were still being home schooled, so we put together a schedule highlighting the noisiest day. This is where our online client portal became invaluable as by following the progress on the client portal, the family were able to work around the noisier days by incorporating library/excursion days.

This portal was also a godsend for the couple and their oldest children; as they were always working, the portal allowed us all to collaborate on important decisions remotely and efficiently.

The Results

We scheduled the start of this project for early the next year and completed the build later the same year. Rather than learn about the results from us, let’s hear from the McDougalls themselves…

“Eco Building Services did a fantastic job with our house extension! We were in need of more living space, an additional bathroom, a true master bedroom, and an office space to run our family business. After speaking with another local builder who sounded all too happy to cut corners, we contacted Adrien.

Right from the initial consultation, Adrien was incredibly helpful and clearly wanted to make sure everything was done properly. Eco Building organised to have their architect, Tanya, draw up all of the plans. Tanya understood what we needed, and designed everything beautifully, to cater for all of our needs, as well as finding ways to fit in the little luxuries we had hoped for.

Once we were given the price for the project, it was set, as Eco Building had factored in every expense, so there weren’t any shocks when we received each invoice. When construction started, we got to meet the building team, who are such a great bunch! They were so hard working, got along really well, and did an exceptional job.

Adrien and his team were always happy to answer any questions and help out however they could. We would definitely use Eco Building Services in the future and have already recommended them to a friend who is considering renovations!

Thank you to the Eco Building Services team for doing such a great job! We truly love our home!”


To find out more about how the team at Eco Building Services can create the extension project of your dreams on time and within budget, get in touch with the team today!

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