We were approached by a couple who had been planning an extension and renovation of their high-set Queenslander home in Camp Hill. The job required significant structural modifications to both the ground and first floors.
They had navigated the design and approvals process by themselves, and had just received council approval, when they provided us with architectural working drawings to provide a quote. When we looked over their plans, however, it became clear that there were significant problems with the design. The engineer had designed a structural steel system to be installed inside the existing ground floor of the home to allow the existing stair void to be moved and the first floor’s footprint to be extended above. However, the first problem with this design was that consideration had not been given to the cost or practicalities of how this system would be installed in real life.
The second problem was that due to the partial demolition of the floor above, a complex and expensive process would be required to ensure it did not collapse during demolition. This process also included protection work to both adjoining properties. Considering these factors, we advised our clients that demolishing and rebuilding the first floor ‘from scratch’ would save them over $50,000 and weeks of construction time. Had these engineering and construction issues been addressed before plans had been produced, they would have saved even more money.