Jump to content
Find Professionals    Deals    Get Quotations   Portfolios


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by kardtoon

  1. why not call a few company to get quotes rather than ask in a forum where folks here don't have any idea about the condition of your house and what needs to be replaced or difficulty in replacing. On a separate note, I once asked my regular aircon serving guy what brand tends to fail a lot since he also does repairs. He told me to stick to Diakin and/or Mitsubishi Starmex to be safe. Hope this helps a bit.
  2. When you settle on your contractor for this job, I'll be interested to know the cost and appreciate if you could share in the forum and/or send me a PM. Thanks in advance.
  3. A toilet without window or mechanical venting (ie extractor or ventilation fan) would not have passed TOP. Your toilet probably has some type of mechanical ventilation. Look carefully for venting slates in the toilet. If really don't have, complain to BCA.
  4. At this price, speed and promise of no extra charge for any changes.... He must be a super good friend. :-) Seriously it sounds so far below the market rate that I'd be careful that you pay only for works completed and get a performance bond.
  5. If you want to consider another brand. You can look at Vento. I use them and are pretty happy with it. http://vento.com.sg/
  6. Given that it's 4900 square feet, if that's GFA, it works out to be $167psf which is amazing construction cost for today, not to mention you are getting a lift for it. I suggest that you make sure you get the full cost including carpentry, submission fees etc. And more importantly get a performance bond.
  7. Sounds pretty cheap to me. Think you have a good deal or you need to check the quality of what you are getting.
  8. One of the places where I install my car window film, carries film that makes the glass bullet proof as well. If anyone needs it, PM me but don't ask me how much, I have no idea. LoL
  9. For my case, my engineer was liaising with various departments for the CSC. Not sure if only the architect can do the submissions or if it can be anyone else. You can also check with NParks and BCA on what are the outstanding reifications on your property and once you know what else is left to do, contact contractors for quote on what it will take to rectify those areas.
  10. I have some LED lights in my house. Those that are "Halogen like" with limited throw range and those that are very similar to PL down lights (broad throw area). Overall will save electricity and hard to recover cost. Example, my LED throw light (From Cree) only consumes 52% of the electricity of a PL downlight of similar brightness. This works out to a savings of ~$10 per year. Price-wise, the LED light costs $180 to $200 versus $30+ for the PL light. Long time to breakeven. Actually, I'm considering converting more PL lights to LED because they don't attract those "flying ants" that flies around down lights after the rain. Seems that these flies are attracted to UV emitted from PL lights... interesting..
  11. Not an expert with these pests but shouldn't you try to get rid of them first before you renovate? If they are still lingering around, your new renovation but get eaten up in no time.
  12. I don't sense much difference as well, except for leaves falling into my balcony and front lawn but that's due to the house being closer to a nature reserve.
  13. I believe GFA covers floor area and not volumetric, so high or low ceiling the gfa is the same. once you try to add floor space to create another level, you effectively added floor space (GFA).
  14. Thanks for the compliment Chaorui. Next time let me know before hand and drop in for a cup of coffee. BTW, you probably also saw the two houses in my row about to start rebuild...both using pretty well known architects... can't wait to see how those turns out.
  15. A key learning from all this is that a large determinant factor of the price depends on how hungry a contractor is. Costs are about the same and many contractors today operate on very healthy margin given the construction boom. A hungry contractor who wants to secure work to keep this team busy will charge very different from a contractor whose team is already fully loaded with projects during the period where you want to your project done. Often hear comments in the forum about ABC contractor who charged low for one forummer and others asking for contact... be warned that the resultant quotes may not be similarly cheap. IMO it's best to ensure that you get several quotes and make the best decision from there.
  16. Having discussed this with builders before, the savings from building a few houses together will come primarily from deployment costs and this can only be realized if the houses are within the same street from each other. Material savings from building small family homes like ours aren't very much. Even if you pool together a few house, the amount of bricks, accessories will likely not move the needle very much. Unless you are lucky and will be able to pool together with a condo sized or similar housing development.
  17. Sounds like a very sensible approach given that you know what you want to do and is fairly confident about the design of your house.
  18. Architecture is somewhat half art and half science so I think it's important to gauge the quality of the architect and not just the price. If budget is prioirty above all else, ie you don't really care about any interesting design or good space planning, then I suggest skip the architect route, use a builder directly.
  19. You need to brace yourself with the amount of work involved if you want to tear it out piece part like that. Building process takes a long time and it can be very tough to project manage this. Can be done if you have industry knowledge of construction and a lot of time.
  20. eh?? In most houses, pipes can be seen when false ceiling is removed. :-) Why not just call a contractor to fix the leaks and replace the false ceiling?
  21. You basically take a construction loan at a pretty high interest rate... last I checked 18 months ago was about 6.7% or thereabouts. Loan is on draw down basis, meaning that interest only charged on amount drawn, which means it's progressive to the construction since you pay your contrator monthly. You can also opt to just pay off the interest and not the principle during the construction period. Once construction ends, do a revaluation and remortgage and then us can use the high equity to pay off the construction loan, which you will want to due to interest rates difference. However the risk is that the property market crash... then jialat liao.
  22. This is quite a common practice and what many do is that they take some sort of construction loan during the building period and after th building is complete, they would apply for a revaluation and remortgage of the housing loan in order to price in the construction amount. Make sure that your housing loan is not in any lock in period as it could incur penalties if you decide to reprice the mortgage. Talk to your banker and they should be able to advice what to do.
  23. Not necessary solid bricks better than hollow bricks but they do seem to be better than the concrete ones. "Fired clay bricks usually have holes in them, sometimes 3 and sometimes 4 or 5 depending on size (but sometimes none) so they heat evenly during the firing process. Adobe bricks (don't use them) aren't fired, so they have no holes. They also aren't very strong and they aren't resistant to water penetration -- in winter, water can get inside and freeze to ice, causing spalling. Bricks come in modular size, queen size, and king size, in addition to specialty sizes. Most builders use king, because masons charge per brick, not by square footage covered, and also because larger bricks require less mortar per square foot of coverage -- mortar costs a lot more per square foot than does brick. Concrete brick (called crick) is better than adobe, but no brick is as good as fired clay which is rated WS for weather severe. WS brick is all I use; it's rated for Alaska freezes and for Arizona summers. By the way, rebar is sometimes run into the holes in cement block (usually 8 by 16 inches) and then filled with concrete or mortar for hurricane resistance, but I've never heard of trying to fit rebar through multiple courses of overlapping brick. Instead, we use brick ties to attach brick to the wood frame behind it." My builder uses the holes in the bricks to fill with concrete so that they bricks bonds better with each other and helps in better stability.