The great thing about brand-new house and land packages is that you get to create the perfect home for you. But it pays to be clear on what kind of upgrades are available and just how much each will cost so that you don't blow out your budget.
House and land packages have most standard finishes included, but if you want real luxury, and to add long-lasting value to your home, you’ll want to upgrade to marble benchtops or premium European appliances.
Many builders offer upgrade package promotions, such as Clarendon Homes’ ‘Raise the Roof’ campaign. For just under $5,000, you can upgrade the standard inclusions in a Clarendon Homes Sapphire kitchen design. Upgrades include 40mm stone benchtops with waterfall edge, double bowl undermount sink, soft-close kitchen drawers and doors, feature splashback and a cold water fridge point so you can hook up and activate an ice water dispenser.
Heating and cooling
While it’s important to make sure your home is not just practical but also looks great, it’s also worth investing in good heating and cooling. Ducted or split-system air conditioners are often harder to install in retrospect.
Many home designs will include one air conditioner in the main living area, but if you want heating and cooling in bedrooms, or a gas fireplace (which has become on-trend again and is sure to add value to your home) then you may want to consider upgrading. This can cost anywhere from $5,000-$10,000 depending on how many additional rooms you want to install into, but you’ll be thanking yourself in the peak of winter and summer.
This is a no-brainer. If you ask your builder to include solar panels, solar hot water systems, recycled water, and double-and-triple glazed windows, you’ll save money on electricity and gas bills. Pretty soon, the upgrades will pay themselves off — especially as the government is introducing more and more initiatives to encourage people to switch to sustainable power, like offering further discounts on electricity bills if you have PV solar panels.
Installing solar panels is more expensive than adding heating and cooling or upgrading your kitchen benchtop, but not only are you doing the environment a favour, you’re also increasing the value of your house.
Adding a room to the floorplan
One of the best things about a house and land package is the ability to customise the floorplan. This is by far the most expensive upgrade but also the one that will pay off when the time comes to sell your home.
Many builders, like Dennis Family Homes, will help you maximise the space in your home for your own unique needs. In the company’s ‘Balmoral’ home design, you can add a guest suite in lieu of a games room, or an additional pantry if you have a large family to feed. If you choose to go down this path you’ll need to talk directly to your builder about the costs involved – but the value to you and your family could be well worth it.