Contact Us

Office Phone
(02) 9713 7428

Brendon Wilkie, Director/Founder
Mobile: 0458 999 001

Ray Wilkie, Director / Administration

PO Box 604, Rozelle NSW 2039

Suite 335,49 Queens Road, Five Dock NSW 2046

Online Enquiry

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of owner building versus using a builder?

You as the owner builder are in control of the project including cost management, quality standards, energy efficient outcomes and the construction timeline.

DirectBuild as your owner builder consultant makes the overall process completely transparent and provides you with direct access to-

  • our estimating software,
  • our pre-screened trades, suppliers and professional service providers,
  • our bulk-buying power,
  • construction schedule/timeline,
  • project management framework,
  • our step-by-step Client Construction Manual,
  • practical site induction process,
  • technical building expertise and so much more.

With DirectBuild’s support, you have all the advantages of a builder without paying the margins charged by builders.

As an owner builder, with DirectBuild’s guidance and support you are managing the job with savings achievable of 20% plus of project costs.

Contact Us to find out more.

What exactly does DirectBuild do?

DirectBuild offers an owner builder consultancy service which specialises in coaching owner builders to successfully project manage the build.

You are the project manager and we provide you with the project management framework and processes to assist you manage the project successfully, including -

  • construction schedule/timeline,
  • scopes of works,
  • an easy to read, step-by-step Client Construction Manual,
  • access to pre-screened trades, suppliers and professional service providers,
  • regular on-site consultations,
  • practical guidance and support from our experienced building personnel,
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What skills do I need to be a successful owner builder?

To be a successful owner builder, the more important attributes you need are good communications, people management and time management skills.

When you add DirectBuild’s detailed systems/processes and our on-going site guidance and support, you can have confidence that your project will be achieved on time, on budget and to the desired quality.

Our owner builder clients have come from a large diversity of backgrounds with a wide range of skills. Depending upon whether the owner builder wants to actually do some of the practical work themselves or focus on project managing the job, DirectBuild will tailor its role to ensure that each owner builder’s contribution to the project is optimised. In some cases, DirectBuild may be –

  • the owner builder coach (teaching owner builder how to correctly hang internal doors for example), or
  • the owner builder advisor (advising owner builder on technical building issues), or
  •  the owner builder personal trainer (when performance of the daily tasks listed in the Construction Schedule has fallen behind), or
  • the owner builder mentor (to fine-tune the owner builder’s people management approach to achieve the desired outcomes from trades or suppliers).
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What is your fee and what is it based on?

DirectBuild charges a fee based on the size and complexity of your project. Our fee is based on a percentage of the overall cost of the building project with minimum fees applying.

The fee is payable progressively. Portion of the fee is payable for:

  • Construction Cost Analysis,
  • Pre-Construction Set-Up Phase - pre-building planning.
  • During Construction Phase - progressively at the start of nominated stages of construction.

Separate fee arrangements apply when DirectBuild provides assistance with the formal building approval process.

We also offer a service package specifically designed for the more experienced owner builders who may not require the standard level of on-site consultations.

We would be happy to discuss a tailored service package with you to meet your specific requirements.

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Can DirectBuild help with the approval process?

Most definitely.

DirectBuild’s complete service simplifies the formal approval process for your new home building or home renovation project.

DirectBuild will:

  • Review the local Council’s DA Guidelines/Checklist.
  • Assess and organise the supporting specialist documentation required by Council.
  • Liaise with Council on your behalf regarding any issues/questions that may arise with your Development Application right through to final determination.

Once Development Consent is issued, Construction Certificate Approval is required before construction can commence.

DirectBuild can organise the required engineering plans and other documentary requirements to streamline the approval of the Construction Certificate by the Accredited Certifier.

DirectBuild is also familiar with the NSW Complying Development criteria and can advise on whether your project conforms to the NSW State Government’s Complying Development requirements. We will explore what changes would be required to your plans to meet the relevant criteria.

DirectBuild will organise the full range of information/documentation required to gain Complying Development approval from the Accredited Certifier.

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How do I obtain my Owner Builder Permit?

In NSW, two separate steps are required to qualify for your owner builder permit –

  1. Complete the following courses –
    • WorkCover “Work Safely in the Construction Industry” (White Card) Course. The White Card course is offered on-line at a cost of around $50.
    • Owner Builder Compliance Course. Again, this course can be done on-line at a cost of around $190.
  2. Once you have completed these courses, the next step will be to -
    • complete the appropriate NSW Government Fair Trading Application form for an Owner Builder Permit,
    • collate the necessary supporting documentation (as detailed in the relevant Application Form), and
    • collect your Owner Builder Permit from Services NSW outlets or on-line from the Department of Fair Trading.

It is important that you collect the Owner Builder Permit before you do any work at all on the actual development.

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Is Owner Builder finance difficult to arrange?

It is fair to say that it is harder for owner builders to arrange a construction loan compared to home owners who elect to engage a licensed builder with a fixed price contract.

Some banks do not participate in the owner builder lending market, whereas others impose more conservative Loan to Valuation Ratios and other lending restrictions.

DirectBuild works closely with a number of experienced owner builder finance brokers who are well versed in sourcing competitively structured owner builder finance from a range of participating lending institutions.

It is important to ensure that you have formal written approval from your lender for your owner builder finance before you start your project as it is unlikely that lending institutions will approve a loan after construction has commenced.

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What kind of insurance should I carry as an Owner Builder?

As an owner builder, you will require a contract risk insurance policy that covers you throughout the course of the building process.

In addition, you need to consider personal and property risks which may arise during the project.

You should consult your licensed insurance provider/broker to provide professional advice in this area.

We have experienced owner builder insurance brokers on our data base who would be able to assist in achieving a comprehensive and competitively-priced owner builder insurance coverage.

The types of cover you may wish to discuss with your insurance provider/broker include –

  • Personal Sickness and Accident Insurance.
  • Construction Works & Public Liability Insurance.
  • Voluntary Workers Insurance.

When nearing the final stages of your project, you will be taking delivery of expensive whitegoods and appliances and at this stage, you should consider arranging appropriate insurance cover (Home and Contents Insurance) to protect against the risk of theft.

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