Self Building at Graven Hill #1, Plot 129 – Helen & Simon

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The community here is pretty unique and certainly one of the best parts of building at Graven Hill, so I thought it would be interesting to talk to some fellow self builders and share some of their stories…

I’ve started off talking to Simon Loo, who has built a unique and modern 5 bedroom family home – you can listen to the interview here.

Simon and Helen moved to the UK from Switzerland, where they drew much of their inspiration from modern architecture by Le Corbusier and Rem Koolhaus. The project was self managed, with Simon working out much of the initial design work using Sketchup. One of the key objectives was to create a feeling of volume – the high ceilings, large doors and expanses of glazing achieve this with wonderfully light and spacious rooms.

By carefully prioritising and managing the process, materials and trades, Simon has been able to keep the budget under control whilst still delivering their vision. This is one of Graven Hill’s iconic houses!

Info

Bedrooms

5

GIA

206sqm

Design & Planning

Project

  • Self Managed

Construction

Images

Highlights

Vision

“I was thinking…I would really like to have a modern house…warm, light, low energy consumption”

Contingency

“The variability is great – you always need to save quite a good chunk for contingencies”

Inspiration

“In Switzerland we were able to visit a lot of architecture by Corbusier, Rem Koolhaus…we really liked the modern style”

Research

“The more work you do at the front end to know exactly what you want, the better it is…”

Le Corbusier

Rem Koolhaus

Farnsworth House

Trades

“I made sure I went to someone reputable…someone who, as we’re discussing demonstrated knowledge – you can tell if someone knows what they’re talking about”

Vision

“The vision for the house is – height of the ceilings, lots of daylight…those were the things that couldn’t go – otherwise it would compromise the feel of the house”

Internal Space

“There’s nothing more wonderful than having that sense of volume”

Graven Hill

“My experience has been largely positive – I came in with the understanding there will be teething issues”

Would You Recommend Self Build at Graven Hill?

“Absolutely – Graven Hill is a pretty special site”

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