7 top tips for Renovations

So you’ve made the choice to renovate your home. It’s one thing to have the idea in your mind, but another to actually implement that idea! We’ve compiled some tips to help you through the daunting but rewarding process of renovations. 
1. Don’t have inaccurate measurements! A few centimetres can make a difference. The project won’t be pulled off successfully if dimensions are unequal. 
2. Work with a good design. To help you come up with an exciting but achievable plan, consult with an architect, a builder or an interior designer.

3. Don’t go crazy with DIY. Know your limitations and get the professionals to do the important jobs. There’s a lot at risk if you don’t know exactly what you’re doing.

4. Make sure the professionals you hire are fully qualified. All tradesmen involved in structural, electrical and plumbing should have a good reputation amongst their clients!

5. Be flexible and creative. Don’t stretch the budget too much, but be prepared to update elements such as painting, tiles and bathroom fittings.

6. Try to not change your mind every week! A renovation project isn’t always straight forward, but the process is smoother if your mind is fairly clear about the outcome. Changing your mind frequently can result in lost time and waste of resources.

7. Don’t skimp on good quality materials. When selecting materials, it is common for people to try to buy cheap materials. However, these may not always be the best options for the longevity of your house, or the overall finish once completed.

Home Building Trends 2018

Since man started building homes, there have been many trends that have emerged throughout history. Certain materials were used for hundreds of years, before technology changed and ideas were spread. Natural materials were replaced with man made and composite, materials were shipped around the world, and protection from natural disasters came into play. With the advent of the internet, builders have now been given instantaneous access to millions of ideas and concepts. Modern trends have come and gone, with many making a comeback in recent years!

What do we want to see in our homes and build our homes out of in 2018?

1. Freedom with style: In the past there has been a tendency to follow ‘codes’ to achieve a certain look for the home. Homes had themes, rules and style agendas. Now, there is a lean towards ‘unique’ homes that tell a personal story. There is more wriggle room to be adventurous with design choices!

2. Indoor plants: Indoor plants are becoming increasingly popular as a form of decoration, as they are aesthetically pleasing and believed to be good for your health.

3.  Fabric: Fabrics can help to set the mood decoratively in a home. Refined textual fabrics, such as wool, linen and sheen, can add a refinement to your home design.

4. The old and the new: Many people are choosing to convert old interior spaces. We’ve seen the rise of converted churches, warehouses and factories.

5. Escapism: People are creating spaces in their homes to retreat and have peace from everyday life.

6. Natural fibres: Materials from nature are making a comeback. Particularly wicker and reeds, which are used as lighting, decorations and textiles.

A Transformation in Millbrook: Part 4

For the owners of the Millbrook Primary School site, it is important to retain the history of the site whilst building an amazing, modern family home.

Interestingly, although built in 1878, the building was not heritage listed and could easily have been bought and knocked down. The owners are choosing to retain the heritage/history, as that is what they love the most about the site. They have removed some of the add-ons, however, the original building remains intact and has been repaired with some changes to accom

modate modern building requirements (such as building standards for fire protection and energy efficiency). After the devastating fires of Ash Wednesday in the 1980s, there wasn’t much left other than the stone/brick shell. However, where possible they have reused or salvaged items, such as the slate in the foyer (which will be reused in the landscaping) and the stone from the dwarf walls in the cellar (which is being used in the gabion walls).

As mentioned in the previous article, the foyer of the original building is going to be a small museum housing antiques and old school memorabilia. That is the only room that will retain the original plaster on the walls. The owners have already received a number of historical / heritage items from members of the local community, and have also located other items in the Gumeracha library and State Records. The measures that the owners have taken will ensure that the beautiful history of Millbrook is preserved. In the next article, we will reveal the stages of development of the project, and why the owners chose New Creation Group to come alongside them in their journey.

What could go wrong on a construction site?

When it comes to building a home, it is vital that all the safety elements are in place.

Houses can be built too fast with little regard for safety. Corners can be cut, and the appropriate safety measures not fully explained to all involved.

At New Creation Group, we are committed to ensuring that building projects have the utmost safety precautions in place to ensure the wellbeing of the workers on site, and the overall quality of the finished project. It is imperative to undergo safety training, research the best building materials, and monitor the project stage by stage. We have compiled a list of things that could go wrong on a site, what you shouldn’t skimp on when taking on a building project, and why you can trust our company to do the right thing!

Elements that could go wrong:

Leaky roof or windows: It is so important to build roofing and windows correctly so that rain doesn’t cause you to run for a bucket every time! A leaky roof costs time and money, it is best to avoid having to repair or remodel it. Therefore, a builder should  undertake the correct procedures to make sure the roof does not sustain these issues: cracked flashing, improperly installed skylights, faulty shingles, clogged gutters, incorrectly sealed roof vents, excess moisture.

Injuries: The prevention of injuries is very important, and the contractor must be vigilant about following the laws established by Work Health & Safety.

Poor foundations: Foundations should always be completely straight. A builder will check to see if your foundations are straight by sighting the length of the foundation wall from each corner. With a level, they will make sure there are no leaning walls. Other things to look out for are chipping/flaking concrete, doors that jam or fail to open properly, and cracks in other parts of the building such as the ceiling or walls.

Weather: Mother nature doesn’t care about your building project and this is completely outside of the hands of all involved in the project! Delays and frustration can occur, however, the reaction of the contractor is vital. They must be prepared, organised and act calmly. If they succeed in doing this, construction should resume immediately after the episode of bad weather.

Why trust New Creation Group?

There are many reasons why you can entrust your building project to our company.

Fact sheets: New Creation Group complies with the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 (SA), where certain people have healthy duties with which they must comply in relation to undertaking construction work.

Staff: Our builders are qualified, accredited and award winning. Our staff are dedicated, experienced, and work closely with clients to achieve the best outcome on any building site.

Reputation: We have an excellent track record for safety, and our clients value our processes and resulting building projects!

NCG use an online program called Sitebook, which helps monitor the various trades that occur at the building site, ensuring each person complies with Work Health & Safety.

Top Building Materials for new homes

There is a large variety of materials used in construction, some that are well known, and others that are little known about. In this article, we break down the pros and cons of the most popular building materials, to assist you in deciding what might be useful for your building project.

Steel: Steel has been a major material component in construction since the 1800s. It is known for framing tall buildings that are structurally sound, being good for economic health and having excellent durability. It is long lasting, sustainable and recyclable. Though it had been known for mostly commercial projects, it is gaining popularity in residential projects. However, it is not useful for humid climates as it needs extra insulation in this environment.

Concrete: Concrete is arguably the most well known composite building material in the world. It is formed from the combination of a binder and aggregate such as cement. After mixing the elements, the mixture hardens. Concrete has been the dominant building material for modern times thanks to its ease of transport, easy formability and durability.  due to its longevity, formability, and ease of transport. It is still a popular, viable building material.

Wood: For thousands of years, wood has been used as a natural material to build houses. Many cultures have utilised it for almost every type of structure in every climate. It is strong and flexible, and, when pressed into timber, very durable. However, the main risks of building with wood are the risks of fire and problems with moisture.

Glass: The use of glass in architectural buildings has become very popular in modern times. Mainly used to let light into rooms, it can also be used as an art-form in homes. It can be quite expensive to install a large amount of glass.


Foam
: Used alongside structural materials, foam is a favourite material for insulation. It is light in weight and easily formable. However, it can be quite flammable.


Ceramics
: Ceramics have been around since Roman times. The fired clay bricks and tiles are useful for pipes, siding, flooring and roofing. 

Stone or rock: Rock is the building material that has been around for the longest. It is available readily in many countries and there are a diverse range of rocks you can use  It is the longest lasting building material available, and is usually readily available. There are many types of rock throughout the world, and choosing one will be dependant on how it contributes effectively to your design. It’s a very dense material so protection is a big plus, however, its main cos is its large weight.

Fabric: You wouldn’t often associate fabric with sturdy construction. But the use of fabric has been developed as a modern construction technique with the development of  modern buildings being made of flexible material such as fabric membranes, and supported by a system of steel cables.

Metal: Metal is primarily used as an external surface covering. Corrosion is metal’s main con when it comes to longevity.


Hebel: 
Hebel is a strong, versatile building material made from AAC (Autoclaved Aerated Concrete). It is extremely easy to handle and quick to build with. A more modern material, it is gaining popularity.

A Transformation in Millbrook: Part 2

The owners of the Millbrook Primary School site in Adelaide have always wanted to rebuild an old building as a home. Finding the perfect site in Millbrook, they set out to build an amazing family home from a beloved historic site. There are many aspects of the project that they believe to be unique.

-They wanted to keep the look and feel of the ruin, for example, the exposed stone and brick work, while modernising the home with an industrial style.

-At the join of the old building and the extension there are two atriums that provide views of the external brick and stone.

-The fire places will retain their exposed brick, there will be exposed rafters in the main living room, and plenty of glass in the extension that looks over the bushland views.

-They have retained the original foyer, which will house a small museum of antiques and school-related memorabilia.

-There is an old underground rain water tank with an exposed brick top which will be used as a fire pit.

-A 40 foot shipping container swimming pool will be surrounded by a large deck.

In the next article, we will discuss what aspects of the project excite the owners and builders the most!

Top Tips for Home Builders

It’s always exciting to build a new home! Of course a process this big and expensive comes with a lot of stress and anxiety. We’ve outlined a few tips to help you through this major life event.

1. Consider the materials you want to incorporate into the project. Check whether the materials you wish to use are high maintenance (eg. natural stone, marble) and, where possible, use maintenance-free building components.

2. Set a realistic budget, using a cost calculator, and consulting with a financial professional. Have a contingency plan.

3. Understand the property boundaries.

4. With each correspondence, record it in a binder folder. Keep paperwork together and organised.

5. Plan the spaces of the home, including the outdoor living space, kitchen space, and how much space will be needed in the bathrooms. Also consider where you will be placing outlets for electronics (coffee maker, powerpoints for chargers, computers etc), and whether, by opening a dishwasher, it prevents you from opening a drawer or door.

6. Take your time, with a careful planning process. Keep communicating with the construction manager, be flexible, and always expect to spend more rather than less.

A Transformation in Millbrook: Part 1

New Creation Group has recently undertaken an exciting project, transforming a beloved site that is rich in history into a new family home. It is not often that a primary school site as unique and historical as Millbrook Primary School in Adelaide can be turned into such an ambitious new project.

Millbrook Primary School was established in 1879. After almost one hundred years of educational history for the local children, it was destroyed by the horrendous Ash Wednesday Bushfires of 1983. Subsequently a new school was built onsite, which was shut down in 2007.

The school has special meaning to the owners of the site, with their relatives living in the district since the 1800s, and some even attending the old school as pupils. They believe the school site is the perfect location for a family home, being surrounded by bushland, only 15 minutes away from suburbia, and still consisting of the school’s recreational activities such as an oval and tennis court.

The Millbrook school site boasts incredible historical stories, and the owners hope to retain its history whilst building new memories of their own. They are excited that New Creation Group has grasped their vision and are working with them to achieve their dream. They are working closely with the builders with every part of the building process, and expect completion around mid 2018.

Stay tuned for our next post about this amazing project, where we will discuss the unique features of the project!

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