Continue the journey with Murray & Fiona - see how their modular bush build unfolded and view the completed project!
If you haven’t read Part 1 of Murray & Fiona’s Tasbuilt story, then click here to get up to speed. If you have, read on…
Murray and Fiona had lived in very different style homes in earlier times – chrome and glass for Murray, heritage for Fiona, and wanted to ‘meet in the middle’ with this new family home. Briefed by Ben Trimmer (Tasbuilt Project Leader) on the parameters available to them in modular building, they began working on the design of their new Nunamara house in earnest and planning interior finishes at the end of March 2020.
"Nothing about this house is standard," says Murray. Multiple changes were made during planning and building, but Tasbuilt accommodated them easily. Here, Tasbuilt’s exclusive MyHome Online Tracker came into its own. This dynamic online tracking system logs files that can be accessed by the client and Tasbuilt team; building plans, contracts, and multiple planning reports can all be uploaded and viewed at any time in the one place. Later, as the project progressed, photos were uploaded to Murray and Fiona's private MyHome portal at every stage of the build, so they could stay up-to-date from afar. With Murray and Fiona managing their end of things from overseas/interstate, it was "a fantastic tool," says Murray.
By July, council approval for this house was in place. Although there were issues and complexities, as is inevitable for any new-home build, Murray was impressed with the tenacity of the Tasbuilt team in resolving them. "Tasbuilt tried very hard to resolve issues that came up, and they were always successful. They bent over backward for us on everything," he said.
With the build due to start in September (2020), Fiona worked with Tasbuilt’s Client Liaison Manager Brianna Postlethwaite on choices for the interior finishes. She especially appreciated Brianna’s advice in the family bathroom, where many different finishes had to work together harmoniously. Fiona had chosen a lightly marbled benchtop and natural colours for walls and cupboards, to complement the forest views, but was stuck when it came to tiles. Brianna presented the solution in a light grey stone which brought the scheme together perfectly. Everywhere, design details elevate the space from a bathroom to something more luxurious, and as Fiona points out, "You can sit in the bath with a glass of wine and enjoy the view of the forest."
Throughout the rest of the home, features requested by Murray and Fiona have also been cleverly incorporated by Tasbuilt. A wet room is accessed via a side deck and provides ample storage and coat racks. The long, roomy kitchen features a wood-burning oven that heats the house and a bench with seating that looks directly out onto the calm of the forest through stunning picture windows. "I’ll sit and write my school reports there this afternoon," says Fiona.
As an engineer, Murray was comfortable project managing directly with some external suppliers during the build. He found Tasbuilt took this in their stride, liaising effortlessly with these suppliers and ensuring things went off without a hitch, whether it was the initial earthworks and clearing of the block by another contractor, or the internal fit-out of light-fittings, flooring, and blinds.
Both Murray and Fiona attest to Tasbuilt’s attention to detail making differences both in the big picture and the small detail. Ben (Tasbuilt Project Leader) spotted a paint finish being applied to window frames which he suspected, rightly, Fiona would not like and had it changed.
Early on, Ben also noticed a rocky outcrop on one corner of the house’s footprint (the highest point on the property), which Murray saw as a feature. They agreed to skew the home’s final position by fifteen degrees, which now sees those rocks as a feature outside the bathroom window, with ferns that will eventually provide some screening. The wet-room shower with its huge windows replicates the African tradition of outdoor showers which Murray so loved as a boy. With Tasbuilt’s help, he has duplicated it in his Tasmanian house.
Murray lights up when telling the story of this beautiful, modular bush build, and Fiona has a quiet appreciation of the calm solidity of their new home, which reflects the serenity of the surrounding forest. In under a year, this couple successfully designed, planned, and commissioned a new home with Tasbuilt, saw it built and installed, and moved in. It has been the best of all possible outcomes in a year (2020) that was at times strange and unsettling.
For Murray and Fiona, the Nunamara 'Forest House' has signaled the start of a new chapter in their lives, one they are glad to have worked on with Tasbuilt!
A HUGE thank you to Murray & Fiona for allowing us to share your home building story, and for choosing us at Tasbuilt to partner with on this beautiful bush project!
Visit our Recent Projects page, to see the many other homes Tasbuilt have designed and built for families around Tasmania.
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