Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Asbestos Removal.

Having just returned from a lunchtime drive-by, I happily saw yellow tape across the driveway with 'DANGER ASBESTOS DUST HAZARD', and a van parked in the driveway (whose occupant was eating lunch!). Naturally I took a photo, and poked my nose in the letter box. There was a little rubbish lying about, and could see that some of the eaves had been removed. I wasn't going any closer than that, but will venture back later this afternoon (with a face mask ;)) to have a proper sticky once they have finished, and add some further images to this post, if I get a chance.

...also note our 'lovely' vibrant white new part of our crossover!

Further to our more positive news, I have received an apology letter from 'The Postal Company', along with a $5 money order!


Here are a few images from this afternoon's visit after all the works had been completed.

I wonder if they found the skeleton of the possum we couldn't locate last Summer! Judging by the amount of cobwebs, I'm sure there were some horrible looking spiders...

Will be interested to see what tomorrow brings.

Friday, September 26, 2008

We Have Mail!!

FINALLY, after almost 4 weeks of running around on the phone, we have our mail redirected. No sign of my $5 money order, but hopefully that will arrive in the next few days.

I took a trip to the house this morning to find, again, there had been no action from the demolishes. What I did find, was our crossover had been dug out where the gas was abolished, and frame work was in place ready to pour the new concrete. I'm not sure why they are doing it now at the beginning of all the works, and not after demo and construction, but as long as I don't have to pay for it, then I don't really care. I guess it will hold up the demolishes by a few days while they wait for the concrete to cure before driving their heavy machinery on it. So, day four of demolition, and it looks no different. At this stage, we'll be lucky to have a slab by Easter...

A couple of pics from this morning:

As promised, here are a few more pics of the Wilshire Mk3 from Point Cook. Not in my colour scheme, but you get the general feel of the layout.

Dining Room. The larger window will be moved to the lounge, and replaced with the two smaller windows from the lounge. No point having a big window facing south. I think I've also found the chandelier I'm after for above the table too!:

Lounge Room looking into the Dining across the hall:

Hallway towards the front door, showing the garage internal access door (which will be swung into the hall, not into the garage.):

The Grand Alfresco. As standard, it is open on three sides, where as the display has one side built in with the heater. Ours won't initially, but we may block out the south side with something eventually. This shows just how big it will be:

The Pantry in the kitchen, although not a huge Butlers Pantry, is still massive compared to what I'm used to!

The hallway as seen from the front door. Study on the right (just out of frame), followed by the laundry/powder on the right past the big picture, then the loungeroom. On the left is the garage internal access door in the alcove next to the other picture, followed by the dining room and stairs. Just past the stairs we are having double doors to close off the family/meals/kitchen for privacy and cosiness!:

The Powder Room:

The Laundry will have a bench with cupboards below and built in trough, and overhead cupboards for storage, instead of this tiny standard trough.

Looking into the laundry from the hall, with the powder room neatly tucked out of view on the right:

That's it for the moment! So until 'something' starts happening with the old place, there won't be much else to post for a bit.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Not much to tell...yet.

The start of the demo has been and gone, and from looking at the outside, all that has been done is a few low branches from the trees out the front have been cut for better access. They may have stripped a few things from the inside, but I'm not about to go and check! So, for the third day of demo tomorrow...hopefully we'll see something a little more obvious.

I rang the 'Postal Company' yesterday and complained, yet again, that redirection has failed. I also mentioned the 'compensation' word. They rang back today after talking to the distribution centre, and indeed it looks as though someone has stuffed up as our 'book of stickers' has gone missing. She assured me that they have new ones and I should be receiving redirected mail tomorrow. "That's what I was told last Wednesday..."

Anyway, She extended the redirection period for the three weeks It failed, and I told her that I wasn't entirely happy with that decision, as I most likely wouldn't need it in 12 months time. I needed it done when I applied for it initially, and I wasn't prepared to pay for a service that wasn't happening out of no fault of my own. She agreed with me, and will send through a money order for $5. I know it's not much, but it's the whole principle of the matter!!!

There are no interesting demo pics yet, so I'll reflect on some empty spaces again!

The empty storage space (some months ago!):

Another view of the Master Bedroom (yes, all our clothes managed to squeeze into that wardrobe. I won't know myself with a walk-in!):

Bedroom Three:

Bedroom Two:


I am not going to miss this horrid floor! We were going to get rid of it and sand the floors at one stage, but the kitchen had been built on top of it...and another layer of Masonite and lino tiles, making it about a 2cm drop to the floorboards underneath. Way too hard to think about putting quad around the whole of the kitchen including the kickers and oven, so we left it! And don't you just lurve those brown motley splash back tiles!!

...and now to a very full space!!

It's hard to believe it fitted all in...including the cubby house! That was the biggest jigsaw puzzle I have ever done ;) ;)

We took a trip out to the Point Cook Display Centre on Sunday,as that is where the last remaining Wilshire Mk 3 is...and so happens to be the correct orientation for our block. This is the third time we have been there, but the first time since we have signed. It was wonderful to see it again, and I took many pics which I'll put up in the next few days. Walking through it, it was still hard to believe it's going to be reality!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

We Have Some Progress!

Since I last reported in, we have had some major progress with the Electricity and the Gas (finally!).

I visited the house on Tuesday around lunchtime and was greeted with a cut, dangly wire from the gable of the roof! Yay!!

The meter was also removed from beside the front door.

(excuse the cobwebs...it's not a door I open often!!)

Have you ever wanted to now what the insides of the mains power to the house looks like? :)

The gas meter was still there, so after I collected the mail (Grrrr!), I rang the gas company again. They still really couldn't tell me anything, so I will have to ring again tomorrow and put the pressure on them...especially after ringing the Demolishes and organising them to begin next Tuesday!! Yay! They can begin with asbestos removal (the old sheeting in the eaves), and possibly remove the sheds and some trees even if the gas is still there.

Wednesday I spent the morning, again, on the phone and the gas company will fast track the abolishment and hopefully it will be done by the end of this week. I told them the demolishes were coming in next week regardless. The lady I spoke to was lovely and very patient!

I also rang our house and contents insurance people to cancel the policy. Absolutely no dramas there, and I was only on hold for about 30 seconds! A refund cheque should arrive in the next few days.

Our Admin from Henley was also in touch on Wednesday, to see what stage we are at with the demolition. I also inquired about our 5 Star Rating. All that needs to be changed (at no cost to us) is the covers for the ensuite fan and the ensuite WC fan. Shame really, now I'll have to spend $$$ on a PCV (Post Contract Variation) with increased R value batts to the ceiling and the external walls. Oh well! ;)

I made a return visit to the house on Wednesday afternoon and there was a man in a truck parked out the front of the house. as it turns out, he was there to abolish the gas! He found and marked off the location of the pipes from the street, and, unfortunately, they are under our crossover, so he had to come back on Thursday morning to do it.

I cleaned up a few more things in the house, and received a call on my phone from Australia Post. The Lady I spoke to was most apologetic that the redirection had failed. She had heard from the Distribution Centre that our 'book of stickers' hadn't arrived...or was missing, so the new address couldn't be stuck on...hence no redirection. Because she was so nice, I couldn't bear to ask her for the $3 odd credit for the 2 weeks I had been inconvenienced! I should expect to have it all under control by Friday.

So, today being Thursday, the earliest I could get to the house was after 10:30. At that stage, a hole had been dug to remove the meter at the side of the house, and there was a nice patch of asphalt on the crossover where it was disconnected from the street! Excellent!

No idea what this is!

I still received letters today at the old place, including the $1955 Asset Protection Permit I have been expecting from the Council. Hopefully, with no damage done to the footpaths, kerbs , nature strip or council trees during demo and construction, I will receive $1800 back.

So to end this post, I'll leave with some rather sad looking pics of what was once our home.

The front door (I have a photo somewhere of my husband carrying me through it on our return from our Honeymoon!):

The Master Bedroom:

The one and only tiny bathroom - renovated 8 years ago:

The Laundry (this along with the kitchen are the only 2 rooms we hadn't touched in the 12 years):

The Study (converted from the crap sunroom, which was the original back porch):

...not sentimental at all, am I?

Monday, September 15, 2008

Frustrations Continue.

After the Aus Post debarcle, I decided to ring the Gas and Electricity companies to see why the services have not been abolished. Knowing it could take up to 20 days...well, that runs out this Wednesday, so I thought I had better check.

First I checked with the Electricity to see if they had received our fax. They had on the 29th August. Great! He then could tell me it was processed on the 1st September, and should take 10 days after that. Last I heard, adding 10 days onto the 1st September would make it the 11th. HELLO??? Today is the 15th...why do I still have electricity? He couldn't answer that one. Instead he put me through to the company responsible for removing the wires from the house. Once I was put through to someone, she said it was supposed to be done not before the 12th, and before the 16th of September. That's all well and good, but tomorrow is the 16th...they had better get cracking....

With patience fast running out I rang the Gas Company. Perhaps a bad move in my current mood, but while on a roll, I thought I should. After being passed on to at least 4 people (and put on hold for several minutes in between each one), I was getting more and more frustrated as no one could give me a straight answer. I would have loved to have seen one particular Woman's face when she said my Husband had to ring as the gas account was in his name and I couldn't access it without his approval. What the? At this stage, I let fly. I told her I didn't want to access the account, I wanted to know why the service hadn't been cut for demolition after I rang and organised it on 28th Aug, spoke to such and such and was assured I didn't need to sign any forms or 'get approval' from my Husband.

She put me through to the 'Supply' guys (and was probably glad to get rid of me..I don't blame her!), but they couldn't tell me either as their service records department (or similar) closed at 4pm. He asked me to ring back tomorrow after 8am. Just fabulous! I have to go through the whole thing again with about 6 different people? No..he very kindly gave me their direct number!

Now, if I could have that hour back I spent on the phone and achieved nothing, I would be very happy...I might have a few less grey hairs to contend with too!

Hopefully, next week will bring some rewards. I just want my house demolished so we can build our dream home.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

We wait, and we wait and we wait some more...

We have been in our 'temp accom' for 2 weeks, and still no sign of the gas or power being cut off. The phone has been disconnected, and the Optus cable has been removed from the house, but we still wait...and wait...and wait!

Aus Post has completely stuffed up our mail redirection, and it is still being delivered to our soon to be demolished house. I'm still waiting on a return phone call from their customer service with an explanation... I will also be informing them of the two weeks credit I would like in return for them botching up the job. Why should I have to pay for a service which doesn't deliver (pun intended!).

The house looks quite sad now it's all empty, and really doesn't feel like our home anymore. The cat has settled in a bit better, and spends more time out of the WIR than in, but still gets spooked easily when she wonders around outside.

After 2 weeks, I'm over the whole thing already. Can someone please make my Wilshire magically appear without all the added stress?

Stay tuned for some empty house pics soon!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Moved Out...mostly!

Well...we are (mostly) out of our house, and in our temporary accommodation. We moved most of our stuff last Sunday, although we still have some larger pieces of furniture to move into our storage place (we ran out of time!). Everyone is starting to settle in nicely, including the poor cat who has remained in the WIR for most of the time! She hasn't eaten much, but she at least comes out to 'use the tray' ;)

We have had the phone cut off (but the line has not been disconnected from the house as they were supposed to yesterday). We have also had our Optus internet connection cut...but there are still cables attached to the house. No word on the gas and electricity as yet.

We also received our demo permit about a week ago, as well as building insurance. I still have to send off the Asset Protection to the Council and chase up a few loose ends. Once I have cleared out the house I'll post some pics. It's amazing just how big it looks without furniture in it (and how much it echos!!)