How many construction stages will there be?
There will be four stages, with 26 homes in total.
Stages 3 and 4 will probably be combined into a single stage.
What is the timeline for rolling out each stage of the development?
Depending on customer interest, at least one stage per year. Stage 1 will be completed by late August 2019.
What deposit is required? And when do payments need to be made?
Under the contract of sale, a deposit will be paid upon signing the contract (which will be 10% of the purchase price). The balance is to be paid at settlement when the house is completed and the plan of subdivision for the development has been registered. There are no stage payments and the deposit will be retained in a trust account and refunded if the purchaser has a right to terminate the contract (for example, if the plan of subdivision is not registered within the agreed time).
What about council rates and insurance? Are these included in the annual Owners Corporation fee?
The rates and the insurance for the common property, such as the community centre, will be included in the annual body corporate fee. Although we don’t have a precise amount for the annual Owners Corporation fee at this stage however we estimate it will be around $1,000 per household. The rates and insurance for your private freehold are your responsibility and additional to those for the common property.
Will each house have its own water rates, as well as council rates?
Yes, each private house will have its own water rates, as well as council rates.
Are there any penalties imposed by the developer or Owners Corporation if I sell the property at any point in time?
Houses have freehold titles. There is no penalty to sell at any time.
Must the homes be owner-occupied?
No, homes do not need to be owner-occupied. Homes have freehold titles. Therefore people can do what they want with their own property as long as they follow the Owners Corporation rules.
Do you offer single and double storey dwellings?
At this stage we are only considering double story homes.
Are pets allowed?
Yes. At this stage, we are proposing that pets will allowed as long as they are kept on people’s private land and not allowed to roam on the shared spaces, unless on a lead. Also, cats will need to be kept inside or in an enclosure.
How difficult has it been convincing Mount Alexander Shire Council?
There have been no difficulties. The Council has been very supportive. The planning application was reviewed and approved by Mount Alexander Shire in November 2017.
The notification of the planning approval was received in January 2018.
Would you consider a central car park to enhance social interaction?
No, we will not have a central car park at The Paddock. That’s because car parking will be located around the perimeter of the development in order to make cars less dominant. The centre of the development will be completely car-free and dedicated to food growing, gardens and recreation spaces.
What about covered car parks?
We provide 1 covered car park per dwelling.
How many car spaces will there be for each dwelling? Will there be car parks for visitors?
1 car space for each 2 bedroom home
2 car spaces for each 3 and 4 bedroom home
5 visitor car spaces in total
Note: If allocated car spaces for each property are not used, they could be converted into private garden or recreational space for that property.
Will electric car charging be provided, and if so, will it will it be powered by solar?
We are planning to instal one electric charging station for cars. Depending at what time vehicles are charged, they will use either solar or grid power. If residents express interest in more charging points for cars, these could be added.
How do the properties conform to Liveable Housing Guidelines?
Seventy percent of all the properties will be suitable for wheelchair access on either the road side or the garden side. Approximately three houses could have wheelchair access from both the the garden and the access road. In addition, all the 2 storey dwellings could be adapted so that the main living quarters, bedrooms, bathroom and toilet are downstairs.
Can you provide more details about the governance structure, such as who makes the decisions about shared facilities and how these decisions will be made?
We are proposing a structure where decisions are made by majority vote at the general assembly. The general assembly is made of all property owners. Decisions are then implemented by a body corporate agent with the involvement of a committee. The committee is a group of volunteer owners who want a deeper involvement with the body corporate agent.
Is it necessary to sign up for stage 1 in order to know what the rules will be that for the common building and shared spaces?
No. This information will be made available to anyone interested in signing up for later stages.
I understand there is a common laundry. Can I have a washing machine and/or dryer in my home if I want?
Yes, you can have a washing machine and/or dryer in your home.
Given that most houses are attached, how will noise issues be addressed?
Houses will be thermally and acoustically insulated well above regulation expectations.
What building materials are you planning to use?
Brick separation walls
Hardwood timber for the living space floor
Plaster for the walls
Tiles for all wet areas
Wool carpets for the bedrooms
Is the NatHERS 8.5 star energy rating an average for the development or a minimum for all houses?
It is an average since all houses have different orientations and will each differ slightly.
What is the typical kitchen design and appliances?
The kitchen design will be discussed and adapted to each household's personal requirements. Regarding appliances, we propose a cooktop, rangehood and oven (all-electric). Appliances can be upgraded if necessary, at additional cost.
Have you considered solar hot water?
Yes, we have considered solar hot water but have decided that heat pumps are a preferable solution for The Paddock because:
Solar hot water doesn't integrate as well with solar PV. This is because when the solar hot water system is relying on the boost system in winter, solar PV generation is at its lowest.
Electric boost units on solar hot water systems are a resistive element with no efficiency gain. Heat pump technology has much higher efficiencies than a resistive element.
For the same size system/tank, heat pumps generally cost less to install.
About how many square metres of each of the 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedrooms will be dedicated to private garden space?
1, 2 & 3 bedroom dwellings will have approximately 30m2 north-facing private garden
4 bedroom dwellings will have approximately 40m2 north-facing private garden.
Can I have a private outdoors clothes line in my garden?
Yes, you can have a private clothes line in your garden if you wish. We are also currently exploring options for a shared drying space as part of the shared laundry.
Where will the chicken shed be located?
This will be decided during the design development stage of the project.
Where will the composting areas be located?
All private gardens can have their own worm farms with each household being responsible for its own organic waste. Larger scale green waste composting for the agricultural zone will also be provided.