Choosing a sloping block of land to build your dream home comes with its own unique set of challenges. But working with the right builder you can have an easy, enjoyable building experience.
Sloping blocks are a great option when it comes to price and the opportunity to capture amazing views. Plus, building on a sloping block can create a home that’s truly spectacular.
We’re experts on building on sloping blocks. Hamlan has more than 35 years’ experience in building homes across the Geelong region, Surf Coast and the Great Ocean Road.
We believe the key to building your dream home on a sloping block is finding an experienced and innovative builder who understands these challenges and has the solutions to build a home that will stand the test of time.
So if you have a block of land on a sloping block or you are considering your options, and not sure what builder you should choose, here’s our top three tips to choosing a builder for your sloping block.
Make sure communication is a priority
It’s important to remember that building your home is an important life changing event — so having a great relationship with your builder will be key to making it a seamless experience.
When choosing a builder it is so important to make sure transparency and communication are two of their core values. We’ve heard many horror stories of communication breakdowns between a builder and a client and the unnecessary pressure and stress that puts on a client’s experience.
For Hamlan, we maintain our trust with our clients through communication, respect and delivering on what has been promised from the start. You only have two points of contact through your Hamlan build. Firstly with a new home consultant and secondly with your site manager. Both team members will be available to answer any questions at any time. And once construction commences your site manager will provide you with weekly updates on how your new home is progressing. In addition, we provide you with regular emails and access to our client portal so that you can keep track of the progress.
Hamlan operations manager Josh Liston says it best.
“Transparency, integrity and openness are at the centre of Hamlan’s ethos,” he says. “Beautifully built homes reflect great communication with our clients.”
Ask the big questions from the very start
When you speak to your builder make sure you have a list of questions to ask them so you can get the truest picture of what is involved in building your home on a sloping block.
Things to ask a potential builder about are:
– The additional costs to prepare the site — as it may need cutting and filling. For Hamlan, we suggest that by working with the lay of the land, you might be able to control some of the costs associated with excavation and retaining walls. By working with the lay of the land, as opposed to against it, you will get the best end result.
– Water control around your property. We always suggest you consider the drainage on your site. This means you will need a correctly designed and maintained stormwater plan. For example, if your home is positioned down a hill you will need to consider where pools of water may collect and build retaining walls to prevent any further erosion.
– The connection between outdoors and in. This might seem like a no-brainer but access to your home is one thing that can prove to be a challenge when building on a slope. Something as simple as your driveway, might not be so simple if your block has a considerable fall, so it’s important to discuss access. And also consider the position of your outdoor entertainment area and how easily it can be accessed into your home for guests as well as vehicles.
A builder’s answers will give you the greatest insight into how they operate as well as how upfront they can be about their processes and costs.
At Hamlan, this all happens as soon you meet a new home consultant. They will not only help you discover what it is that you are looking for in a home design but can assess any blocks of land you’re interested in or have already purchased. Because we are so passionate about building a dream home for you, our knowledgeable new home consultants will even personally visit a block to assess what your options are.
Do they have a range of designs and options to suit different sites
If after all your questioning has proven that building on a slope will work for you, then the fun can really begin and that’s looking at home designs. Not all home designs can work for sloping blocks, so it’s important to find a builder with a variety of different designs and options to make your home uniquely yours.
At Hamlan we have five architecturally designed split-level homes for sloping blocks. And like all homes that are part of our Aspect Range — any of the standard designs can be reconfigured to suit any lifestyle. Options include relocating or enlarging rooms, changing the layout of the kitchen and adding bedrooms.
Hamlan’s split level designs are:
The Sheoak 234 HS. This home is designed to suit a block in an urban location with considerable fall towards the front. With the master bedroom on the ground floor, the three remaining bedrooms mid-level and the main living areas on the first floor — the Sheoak 234 HS is designed so the owners can enjoy the surrounding views.
The Sheoak 294 LS. This home is designed for blocks in an urban location with a fall from the frontage to the rear of the property. This home’s design serves well as a spacious family home or the ideal holiday home.
The Hopkins 250. This home is designed for blocks in an urban location with side to side fall rather than front to back or vice versa. This design also has a small footprint.
The Hopetoun 267 HS. This home is designed for owners of a block that slopes up a hill. In this design, the entire ground floor of the home is a secluded retreat for parents.
The Hopetoun 259 LS. This home is designed to flow according to the lay of the land and suits a block with a downward slope.
Building on a sloping block can create a breathtaking dream home. But you’ll want to know that you’ve chosen the right builder for the build so you can enjoy every step of the process.
Hamlan has more than 35 years’ experience in building homes across the Geelong region, Surf Coast and the Great Ocean Road—making us experts at building homes on sloping blocks! In our experience, when it comes to building on a sloping block, we believe your builder should:
1. Make communication a priority
2. Be willing to answer big questions from the start
3. Have a range of designs and options to suit different sites
And this is exactly what Hamlan offers!