Home and Extension Building Guide


This is not an exhaustive and precise schedule of events for the construction of all types of houses and extensions but an attempt to schedule typical events and procedures in a logical order to assist the layman in becoming more knowledgeable and have a better understanding of the process and procedures during construction of a typical house or extension.

Please print out and use this Check list, or download the Microsoft Word document.



Select Your Consultant/Designer with proven experience in domestic design and construction to advise you throughout the design, construction and administration process for your new home or extension.

Agree in writing with Your Consultant/Designer the extent of service, contractual arrangement and fee.


Select a suitable site by considering for example:

  • Cost
  • Location
  • Orientation/passive solar advantages
  • Shape
  • Surroundings
  • Privacy/Overlooking
  • Adjacent buildings
  • Easements
  • Caveats, etc

Your Consultant/Designer to advise on suitability of your selected site for your proposed house prior to purchase.

Purchase block. Make purchase conditional as appropriate.


Building with a Project Home Builder:

Select a project home design nearest to your requirements for accommodation and cost. Instruct the Builder to prepare an adjusted design to suit your actual accommodation specification and price requirements. Do not sign any documents until you are reasonably satisfied the Builder can satisfy your requirements.

Sign the "Preparation of Plans Agreement". Make it conditional that should the Builder not satisfy your accommodation and price requirements then the agreed fee shall be reimbursed less site surveying costs.

Your Consultant/Designer to peruse design drawings prior to approval and advise on cost effective improvements for example:

  • Furnishability of individual rooms and spaces.
  • Functionality of spaces and layout.
  • Orientation.
  • Passive solar advantages.
  • Zoning and room juxtaposition.
  • Fenestration/Kerb appeal.
  • Internal/external links, etc.

Building as an Owner Builder, or with a nominated Builder:

Agree in writing with Your Consultant/Designer extent of service, contractual arrangement and fee if not already done so.

Together with Your Consultant/Designer, produce a design brief and budget constraints for your proposed home.

Your Consultant/Designer to prepare a Schematic Design Proposal for your proposed home.

Your Consultant/Designer to prepare a Developed Design Proposal for your proposed home.

Your Consultant/Designer to prepare Contract Documents for your proposed home or extensions ie drawings including construction details, wet area design/details and specification, schedules etc.

Your Consultant/Designer to instigate structural design advice from a Structural Engineer as appropriate.


Building with a Project Home Builder:

Your Consultant/Designer to peruse the Drawings, General Specification, Specification Addenda and Building Contract prior to signing.

Your Consultant/Designer to prepare an "Addendum" to the General Specification and Building Contract to correct all deficiencies and anomalies by the Builder to protect your investment, by specifically stating for example:

  • All relevant "Australian Standards" for each trade and Stating AS numbers
  • "The house to be regularly inspected by Your Consultant/Designer"
  • "Reimbursement of your reasonable losses and expenses due to late completion of the building works."
  • "All workmanship and materials are to be first class quality and no lesser quality than the display home" etc.

These Addendums must be signed by both yourself and the Builder and form part of the Contract Documents.

Your Consultant/Designer to show amendments in red on the drawings for the Builder to adjust its own drawings.

All amendments to the contract particulars and drawing must be instigated prior to signing the Building Contract.

Read understand and sign Building Contract, Contract Particulars and Contract Drawings.

Discuss with your Builder your pre-start selections. Obtain a copy of the pre-start selection form completed by your Builder for your records.

Building as an Owner Builder:

Keep a diary of all events during construction. Keep a record of all expenditure during construction.

Obtain a written quotation from Subcontractors for each trade required stating for example:

  • Extent of work
  • Materials and labour being provided
  • Price
  • Contract particulars and conditions, etc

Prepare a Standard Form Subcontract Agreement for every Subcontractor for signing. Schedule all conditions of contract and attach to Agreement.

Obtain appropriate insurance cover. For example:

  • Building works
  • Third Party Liability (min $5,000,000)
  • Workers Compensation (as necessary)
  • House Indemnity

Submit 2 sets of Drawings and Specification together with the Owner Builders Declaration, to the Local Council for their approval. Some Local Councils require Town Planning Approval prior to issuing the Building Licence. Appropriate inquiries should be made with the Local Council.

Check contents and conditions of issued Building Licence.

Check that every Subcontractor has Workers Compensation Insurance cover as required by Law. Otherwise you will need to obtain Workers Compensation Insurance cover for these Subcontractors.

Check that every Subcontractor has a copy of the Specification and Drawings prior to commencing work. Provide all instructions and specific requirements to every Subcontractor in writing and keep a copy for yourself.

On completion of each trade, Your Consultant/Designer to inspect and verify work satisfies specification requirements prior to paying each Subcontractor.

Building with a Nominated Builder:

Discuss with Your Consultant/Designer the various types of Standard Form Building contract, together with connotations:

  • Cost Plus Building Contact
  • Lump Sum Contract for Demolition Works
  • Lump Sum Contract for Minor Works
  • Lump Sum Contract for Simple Works
  • Construction Industry Contract
  • JCC Building Works Contract, etc

Send out tender documents to selected Builders for competitive tendering to be returned at a particular time and date.

Obtain a written quotation from each Builder stating for example:

  • Extent of works:
  • Materials and Labour being provided and excluded
  • Price
  • Contract particulars and conditions, etc

Nominate a Builder on completion of final negotiations by accepting its quotation and scheduling any amended agreements and conditions in writing.

Obtain from the Builder a 'Certificate of Currency' to confirm sufficient insurance cover for example :

  • Building Works
  • Third Party Liability (min $5,000,000)
  • Workers Compensation

Obtain from the Builder a copy of the Home Indemnity Insurance Certificate.

Obtain from the Builder a copy of the Building Licence and Conditions issued by the Local Council. Imposed conditions may involve you in extra expenditure.

Obtain from the Builder a Construction Program for the works

Obtain from the Builder a Schedule of Subcontractors to be employed during construction.

Your Consultant/Designer to peruse contract documents prior to signing.

Sign Building Contract and Contract Particulars.


Site Repeg And Survey

Licensed Surveyor to produce a contour and features showing, contours, boundaries, features, adjacent building with slab levels, power poles etc.

Site Works

Site Worker to form sand pad levels and features as necessary and thereafter compact the sand pad, all as directed by the Structural Engineer.

Retaining Structures

Bricklayer/Stonemason to build brickwork or limestone retaining structures with an appropriate damp proof membrane behind and compact behind, all as directed by the Structural Engineer.


Concretor to excavate the sand pad and pour concrete footing with trench steel mesh reinforcement, all as directed by the Structural Engineer

Service Preset

Excavate sand pad and lay all under slab services for plumbing, drainage, electrical, vacuum system etc.

Termite Barrier

Pest Control Specialists to spray the sand pad. This is called Part A Treatment.

Concrete Slab

Concreter to lay damp proof membrane over sand pad, then pour concrete slab with steel reinforcement mesh supported on plastic bar chairs. Protect surfaces from sun and wind and leave to fully cure. All as directed by the Structural Engineer

Brick Laying

Bricklayer to set out all brick walls on the concrete slab by using chalked lines. Check for accuracy and square.

Termite Barrier Company to lay Physical Termite Barrier during bricklaying should it be selected.

Stand up all full height windows and door frames and secure in correct location. Lay one brick course set out. Check set out and positions of windows and door frames.

Check all walls are square, level and plumb to full height. Also, check windows, features, flashings and details as bricklaying progresses.

Roof Framing

Roof Carpenter to construct roof framing. This can be conventional timber framing constructed on site, or engineered timber or metal roof trusses fabricated in a factory, then delivered and erected on site.

Install air-conditioning ducts and units in roof space if selected.


Chase brick walls as necessary for plumbing, electrical, TV, intercom, telephone, facsimile, audio, computer, security services etc.

Check provision and correct location of all services.

Roof Plumbing

Roof Plumber to fix all roof plumbing, ie. flashings, gutters and rainwater downpipes.

Roof Cover

Roofer to fix roof tiling or metal sheeting. Provide 50 Anticon insulation under metal sheeting or sisalation under tiling if selected

Plaster Float

Plasterer to fix galvanised metal arris beads to all corners prior to applying a sand/lime/cement render to all walls

Ceiling Fixer

Ceiling Fixer to fix Gyprock or Plasterboard ceiling boards to all ceilings and bulkheads in accordance with the manufacturers instructions. Thereafter, fix cornices, ceiling roses, decorative details etc as selected prior to back-blocking all ceiling sheet joints.

Plaster Set

Plaster to apply a white gypsum plaster finish to all walls and finish for a smooth, dense and even finish.

Lock Up

Window Supplier to fix window sashes and sliding doors and Fixing Carpenter to hang external doors to secure house in preparation for delivery of cabinets sanitary fittings etc.


Cabinet Maker to fix all kitchen and bathroom cabinets, together with any decorative joinery, other then those requiring special protection which are fixed later.

The Cabinet Maker will pre-install and seal the sink top and vanity basin.


Fixing Carpenter to fix skirting boards to walls, architrave to door frames, sill boards to windows, together with beading, mouldings etc. Fix internal doors and door furniture. Fix shelving to cupboards and wardrobes.


Tiler to provide brick hob around shower recesses and baths prior to laying a reinforced fibreglass waterproof membrane across shower recesses, thereafter lay wall/floor tiling and grout as selected.

If rectangular or patterned and/or border tiles have been selected check correct instructions have been provided to the Builder/Tiler.

Primary Services Final

Electrician to fix all electric wall switch points, exhaust fans, install, connect appliances etc.

Plumber to install pans/cisterns, baths, taps, drainage, ventilation pipes, exhaust flumes etc. Also, to connect house to main drainage or install septic system as required.

House Pre-Clean

Labourer to scrape and clean concrete floors and remove all debris from inside house.


Painter to clean and prepare all surfaces to be painted and paint surfaces as selected

Secondary Services Final

Intercom System Firm to install intercom, audio electronic and computer equipment as selected.

Telstra to install telephone and facsimile service points as selected.

Security System Firm to install security sensors and control system and commission as selected.

Vacuum System Firm to install wall points, motor and commission as selected.

Air-Conditioning System Firm to install air condition system equipment and commission as selected.


Install roof insulation tucked neatly along ceiling joists.

External Works

Prepare external areas and construct patios, pergolas, driveways, screen/retaining walls, fencing, landscaping etc.


Window supplier to adjust window sashes and sliding doors and install fly and security screens

Glazier to fix shower screens, mirrors etc.

Roof tiler to undertake any necessary repointing of ridge and hip tile caps and replace all damaged roof tiles.

Cleaner to clean entire house and polish all surfaces, appliances etc.

Pest Control Specialist to pond around the house perimeter. This is called Part B Treatment and completes the termite treatment.

You should now apply to Alinta Gas for gas connection, Western Power for power connection, Telstra for telephone connection Carrier for cable TV etc.


Your Consultant/Designer to undertake a thorough inspection of the entire house and produce a list of defects for the Builder to rectify in a proper and workmanlike manner, prior to accepting the house and paying final money to the Builder.

Your Consultant/Designer to check the Builders Final Account. All variations Provisional Sum and Prime Cost Sum adjustments must be substantiated and supported with quatations, invoices and receipts provided by the Builder. Query any aspects and/or sums you find unacceptable.

Should the Builder have overrun the stated contract duration, then the Builder must show just cause for such overrun and where a shortfall exists, the Builder should reimburse your reasonable losses and expenses to the actual date for practical completion.

On satisfactory completion of the house and administrative aspects the Builder should provide the following:

  • Home Indemnity Insurance Certificate
  • Instructions and Warranties for all appliances installed
  • The Termite Installation Certificate and Guarantees
  • The Compaction Certificate
  • A copy of the Building Licence with attached conditions and approved drawings.


The length of this period is stated in the Building Contract. Seven days prior to its expiration, instruct Your Consultant/Designer to undertake a thorough inspection of the entire house and produce a list of defects that have developed since Practical Completion for the Builder to rectify in a proper and workman-like manner prior to the Building Contract coming to an end.


The Builder, including an Owner Builder, is still liable for 6 years from the date of Practical Completion for rectification of all defective materials and workmanship that are found not to be constructed in a proper and workmanlike manner including all structural defects that have developed during this period.

Prior to the expiration of this period, instruct Your Consultant/Designer to undertake a house inspection of the house and produce a list of defects for the Builder to rectify in a proper and workmanlike manner.


Should your new home or extension be located within 5km of the coast or in an exposed area, then some aspects of the house specification must be upgraded:

  • External steel beams and lintels to be hot dipped galvanise protected.
  • External wall brick ties to be stainless steel.
  • Roof tiles to be nailed and clipped, hip and ridge tiles clipped.
  • Cement to sand/lime ratio for mortar to be increased.
  • Steel reinforcement cover in concrete to be increased
  • Glass thickness to be increased
  • Frame sections to large window to be increased, etc.


Whether you are and Owner Builder or an Owner of property being constructed, you should read and understand the following prior to commencement of any work:

·         The Construction Contracts Act 2004

·         The Home Builder Contracts Act 1991

·         The Builder Registration Act 1939

·         The Building Contract and Addendum to Building Contract.

·         The Contract Specification, Specification Addenda and Addendum to Specification.

·         Contractual Drawings

·         Contract Variations

·         Prescribed Payment System Legislation

·         The Building Code of Australia 1996

·         Australian Standards

·         Manufacturers' Specifications and Recommendations

·         Manufacturers' and Suppliers' Catalogues

·         Standard Construction Details

·         Builders Registration Board Website

·         Ministry of Fair Trading Website

NB: Provisions in the Home Building Contract Act do not cover Cost Plus Building Contracts.

Your Consultant/Designer will have a copy of the above and be knowledgable on all aspects of construction and all building related matters prior to, during and after completion of your home or extension.







Archicentre Building Advisory Service can assist you in all or any of the above events.

Your home is a major investment. Don't make a major mistake!


CONTACT LESLEY ON 0419 902 313

Advice, Inspections and Designs by Barry Jones
Post Grad.Dip.Prop
Registered Builder


Email: ArchiCentre Building Advisory Service

ArchiCentre Building Advisory Service

PO Box 1054
Morley WA 6062
Mobile: 041 990 2313


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