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mike2016 last won the day on November 27 2016

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About mike2016

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    Dublin, Ireland

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  1. Am building in my side garden but will sell the house before I start. Means the tender quotes from the builder will expire and go up but there's no way to bridge the financing and get anywhere decent without risking both homes, new and old. There's a buy to let mortgage I could convert to but I'd only be able to use it to borrow a small amount of the build cost and the bank wouldn't go for that as they'd have a half finished house. I got the old house priced at 300-310K (minus side garden), side garden 120K with planning, new house worth 345K currently. Will be able to get 80% of 345K in a new mortgage once I sell old house and finish the build which I expect to be around 250-260K. Currently at the stage where I have planning and am heading out to tender next....sell old house early next year and go from there.....
  2. mike2016

    Bioethanol stoves

    I'm thinking of one of these. Price vary and can get quite expensive, found some around the 1K mark that seem ok. Videos don't excite me regarding the flame but as a unit for the corner of my living room it'll do. They give out about 5 candles worth of heat and shouldn't tax the ventilation levels. Getting cheap bioethanol locally for me is an issue, Government here killed it off a few years back. I can import in bulk to get around that. Didn't think there would be a smell though, good to know. Like the water based one my mum has, might look into those. Let us know what you decide!
  3. mike2016

    Tendering 101

    Thanks Folks! Good advice all. Will listen to that podcast too!
  4. mike2016

    Tendering 101

    Hi, I was talking to someone last night about going to tender for my new build. I'll be appointing a main contractor. When I meet the Architect next month to discuss the tender specification I'm trying to get my head around how I get from a line item in the specification to the exact product I want. Take doors for example: I know exactly the type of oak veneer door I would like to get, plus handles, lock etc and good quality hinges. Now I could get the ironmongery myself or just price these from a supplier and quote a budget of say 150-200 per door to cover things. Then on the day after the contracts are signed point the builder at the supplier and off they go. If I start buying some items myself it means the builder will have to bump up his margins on other items to make up for that loss. Against this I need to be sure if I leave them up to the builder, he gets exactly what I'm after. Do I let them supply the door and I'll supply ironmongery or get a catalogue from a local building supplier and find everything I need there? I'm just after a specific end result. As long as I've my budget set right which is half that battle, who is the best person to procure? If I find a better deal online would they buy it there? Second - how much do I take on vs leave to the builder? Do I get for a quote to finish everything but then negotiate I'll do X & Y afterwards but that affects the builders margins? It also places me on the critical path if I'm slow getting the kitchen installed, MVHR, flooring etc? I don't want to take on too much stress or hold up the builder costing them money in the process. Thanks!
  5. They are a lot more expensive aren't they? Active Cooling also drives up the cost of the models available although JSHarris got a great deal abroad on his......
  6. Just a few things around MVHR I picked up from this thread so far I want to understand better. I know the flow is too low to provide any meaningful cooling. In summer if it's 28 outside and 21 inside, doesn't the cooler exhaust air cool down in in coming warm fresh air? Sort the opposite of what it normally does? You're still going to get some uptick of heat unless you shut it down completely though? Summer bypass just draws in air at 28 degrees doesn't it?! What's the use of that except at night? An aircon unit in the main living area will cool down that space but MVHR will start throwing that cooling outside (albeit at a slow pace) and not distribute it around the house, would that be accurate? Is there such a thing as a recirculate option with MVHR units like you have in a car for when you drive through smoke? The advantage is you get air circulation even when someone's BBQ'ing outside but also if you have one room actively cooled, you get the benefit throughout the whole house (eventually!).
  7. Wow - that's certainly enough to go full polar bear alright! I hope to have two velux at the top of the stairs which is open to roof level plus 4 more in the open plan living / dining area at the north of the house. Not sure yet about supplementing it using MVHR / ASHP / dedicated split unit but after this summer it's on my mind a lot more! I can always keep my options open but don't want to waste money over specifying. I've tall windows on the south facing side so might open for a higher G value for the lower portion of those windows as part of the specification. The briese soleil will take care of the rest. That or buy a few space chest freezers and leave them open.....!
  8. I thought I'd start a topic on cooling specifically. Although it's been covered as part of other threads I wondered what the options are for new builds and existing houses in this area? I've seen some great ideas in other threads: Underfloor & ASHP cooling MHVR cooling option SunAmp to precool rather than preheat? And of course opening the windows at night When night time temperatures are too high to make opening windows useful, what then? Do we get dehumidifiers and air conditioning units like other countries? Shading to prevent solar gain is of course paramount during the day - also blinds, breise soleil, window film to reduce G value, adding trees, walking around stark naked.....! What have people been doing this summer to keep cool and purge the heat? For my current house I'm just using blinds during the day and opening front and rear windows when I'm around too. Regularly 27 degrees in the bedroom overnight however. In the new house I'll have blinds, breise soleil, velux windows in the roof I can open but that's it. I would like to have other options but I can't see myself buying an ASHP at the minute, just MVHR. Thoughts?
  9. mike2016

    Planning Conditions - advice?

    Well, there's another house opposite a little further down the road with damage to their side window recently so I'm going to speak to them and see what happened. It might strengthen my case as their gable window is 7 meters from the wall, mine will be only 1. I'll have CCTV as a mater of course for my own protection but hoodies abound and it won't repair the damage. I can get bulletproof glass if I'm forced this way to at least limit the risk of damage but it will be interesting to see how this pans out. The tree, well, I've to access underground services and put in two car parking spaces, if the root system gets damage and the tree becomes a hazard I'll have to take professional advice about site safety and do what's necessary. Funny though - I'd love to keep the tree and I'd love a glass atrium window but the realities weigh against this...... Thanks everyone!
  10. mike2016

    Planning Conditions - advice?

    Thanks - the tree protection was different to what I thought. I'm thinking about the roots which will be under the ground where the new car parking spaces are to go, the planners are more likely talking about the Heras protection quoted here. Good distinction to understand, Thanks! I think the fact that the old house has no windows is a good case to point out along with some other things.....
  11. Hi, I just got planning permission but there are two conditions I'm concerned about: Revised plans indicating windows facing a main road in the interest of promoting passive surveillance The existing tree to the front of the site shall be retained and protected, both above and below ground, from damage during construction works The first relates to a decision I made to NOT have windows on one side of the house as at the weekend it's frequented at odd hours with late night revellers, late night buses letting people off and a nightclub up the road. All the bus stops on this road are now plexiglass instead of glass for years due to vandalism. My worry is of course my new house would be the closest of any house on that road and attractive to a stone being thrown or two. They say windows plural - I could put on in a glazed atrium for the living room / vaulted ceiling, would love to in fact but it will be too high up to see out of. Plus the existing house has NO windows on this side either! The bedroom would provide a window you could look out of but it would increase the traffic noise. Nothing may never happen but there's a pedestrian opening opposite into another housing estate and a pedestrian crossing beside that and groups of youths often congregate there. The cost of replacing a window cartridge and access to it after the build is done and scaffolding is down will be tricky. The second relates to trees put down by the builder in the estate 20 years ago. They grow up and out (don't know the variety) and are often cut down after 20-30 years and replanted according to a local tree surgeon. The risk is I've to put in two new parking spots in the front garden of the old house nearby and the root system may be disturbed causing damage / loss of the tree. I don't see how I can protect against that without raising the level of the new parking spaces? Roots are 600mm below the surface I'm told and the parking spaces are right by the tree which is over 6 meters high. I can reinstate a mature tree if all fails but not sure the planners would be accept that. Interested in thoughts if you'd had to have similar discussions with your planners and how to tackle these issues in a sensitive & appropriate way. Thanks.
  12. mike2016

    Got Planning!!

    Planning Permission Granted! After trying to ring the planning department on the day of decision at around 4pm and not getting through I resolved to wait until the next morning. At 5:03pm I get an email indicating that planning had been granted. I'd forgotten I'd subscribed to any activity on my planning application! Now, I've still to see the official notification letter with conditions etc but thankfully it was plain sailing. No objections, no requests for information. I took the planning site notice sign down yesterday (could've taken it down 3 weeks ago if I'd realized) just as a nice woman and her two young children was checking out what it said! Anyway, that task is now done, stage 2 finally over! I've an appointment to meet with the Architect again in August as that's the earliest due to holidays etc. I used https://www.estimators-online.com to get a quote just to see what costs I'll be looking at. I know there will be some differences, not least exchange rates but my last Quantity Surveyor estimate is over two years old at this stage. Plus estimators give a much more detailed breakdown which allows me to see quantities so I can replace standard plasterboard with Fermacell for instance and work out the difference. They email you the report as a PDF but you can grab the Excel from their website afterwards and make adjustments if required. Cheap enough and gives me something to prepare against before August. My main worry in building next year is the increased costs - materials and labour keep going up. Will I be able to build the house I want or just enough of a shell to convince the bank its habitable so I can move in and upgrade as I go? I can get a revised window quote as I've opening sizes from the PHPP. There's a few timber frame companies, some just do the frame, some can do everything. Brexit may play a part though with the timing of the build commencing after March next year most likely. So if I have a NI or UK based supplier, SunAmp, MBC, Kibroney etc lined up I'll have to have a plan B just in case, like most businesses! MBC pulled out of the Irish market but I spoke with someone there on Friday and he said they have started requoting again. There's a small irish timber frame company called Shoal timberframe that the Architect recommended. Not seen their stuff and it's a small outfit. Not sure they do foundations though. Anyway, this is where it gets detailed and interesting! I've a lot to think about as I need to decide what elements I'm happy to do and what I'll leave to the builder. Part F of the regulations in Ireland are under review and ventilation may have to be installed by a "competent person" so can I do the MVHR and ducting or will I have to pay someone else? As time slips you bump into these changes and have to adapt your approach. So my site is shown to the right of the red border above. I'll have to shunt the metal shed out the back (painful) about 3 feet to the left. The other two sheds are being demolished. I'll be bringing some of the services onto the site before I sell the house in advance of the build. Electricity should run all the way past the front of the site but I'll want to confirm this. ESB here don't do temporary supplies in Ireland unfortunately. Water is the one I may have to get done as there's a hydrant to the right of the tree in the bottom left corner but after I sell the house I want to be sure I can access it. The pipework may not go much farther. Broadband sweeps though the garden of the house in the bottom left of the photo. I'll bring that onsite and see if I can get it tested so there's no need to dig things up again after I sell the house. The driveway will be split and a new double one created on the front garden of the existing house to maximize the site space I'll be keeping. It all adds to cost unfortunately. I'm not sure if I'll get insurance for those groundworks as getting public liability on the site itself (after I sell the house) to cover me until the build starts will likely be expensive so having a full self build policy for a 12 or 18 month term would make more sense. So, the next few months are about the figures and seeing if I can afford to build with the funds available. Added to that are: Further Architect fees (2 stages plus Assigned Designer, Assigned Certifier regulatory stuff) Development contributions (@ €10K) Legal Costs associated with selling house, discharging old mortgage, taking out new one etc Service Charges (Electricity €2K, Water €2K, Sewage €3.7K, Broadband €120) Initial Groundworks in advance of self build mortgage (credit union loan) Self Build Insurance & Structural Warranty (€1-2K/€3K) There's a good self build exhibition in September in Dublin so it will be interesting to have more serious discussions with some of the exhibitors there this time. One of the factors I'll have to watch out for is the maximum self build mortgage I can access. Most banks will only lend you 80% of the build costs. Now I'll own the site so I hope this will cover that 20%. Some banks also want to see a 15% contingency fund in place. The bank will determine how much a 3 bed detached house is worth in my area and after taking my salary x 3.5 I'll either be able to afford the build or be way off it! Also I've to get permission from my current mortgage bank to sell the house minus the side garden..... I'll be holding off any groundworks until this is all clear to me and how much maneuver room I have. There's no point doing the new driveway etc if next year I'm told our costs have gone up another 5% by the builder and I'm left swinging! Anyway, I'll have to sit on my hands a bit longer and do as much due diligence as possible and see if any builders come back interested from the tender process before making up my mind. I've always thought that until the first wall panel goes up I won't actually believe this is real. It's all paper and numbers and has been for so long. Here's hoping if it's to be it's to be and thanks to everyone on this site for their advice and support!
  13. mike2016

    Thermal Camera

    Reasonably close, 8-10 feet in some cases, 15 feet in others to get the whole house. It should be possible to get a good shot from within most driveways I'd imagine.
  14. mike2016

    When best to decorate a new build

    Wow, Thanks! Great to see the details....
  15. mike2016

    When best to decorate a new build

    Got any close up photos?!