Founded in July 2010, Carter Grange Homes is an exciting new builder in Victoria. Although the company itself is in an early stage of life, it’s led by 5 directors who bring a wealth of knowledge as well as years of building experience and expertise to the table. We gain insight into the company from Colin Hunter, Sales & Marketing Manager at Carter Grange Homes.
“Due to the comparativeness of certain markets and the fact that our product is better suited for the inner city market, we’ve gravitated towards ‘knock down’ rebuilds. This has also resulted in strong activity within our business in dual occupancy space.” Explains Colin. Today, Carter Grange is set to build anually between 150-180 new homes.
The company offers a number of predesigned homes, which are well considered. “In most cases, they are a very good starting point in our discussion with clients. We are able to make value added modifications and tailor the designs to suit and benefit the client.” Advises Colin. He adds, “Our next bow in the quiver, is that we are able to teardown custom parcels and start with a blank canvas, something that we do regularly.”
“Design and construct is a very interesting area of the business. It puts the designer and builder in the same room at the same time during the design stage. This provides a big advantage for the client in regards to budget, and buildability.” Advises Colin. “Additionally, our business offers a professional joinery consultation. We are heavily focused on interior selections and also offer an electrical design consultation. Again, this benefits the client because these services are offered “under one roof.”
Carter Grange also provides every client with a project administrator during both the post-design / pre-construction stage as well as during construction. “This means that there is always a point of contact, someone there to assist with queries, concerns or issues that may arise.” Says Colin.
Something that the company is particularly proud of, is its new show home in Brighton East. “We had a great deal of control over this home. We certainly made a very conscious effort to focus on the architecture without losing site that it needed to offer great value for money.” States Colin. This home will be their second in Brighton East in addition to show homes in Bentleigh East and Caulfield South. In the near future homes will open in Surrey Hills and Essendon also. Another in the pipeline takes place at a site recently purchased in Balwyn North. “We are excited to be heading down the same path architecturally on this project, but with a more traditional concept.”
Being a relatively new builder, we asked Colin about the importance of relationships with key suppliers and contractors. “It’s incredibly important that we build relationships with our suppliers and tradespeople. Without them we can’t be competitive in the market nor could we deliver a quality outcome. This includes ensuring we make quick payment on accounts and invoices. Ultimately, by maintaining these relationships, we once again can provide a better quality outcome for our clients.” Advises Colin.
As with any builder, new or old, there are industry concerns and hurdles that all will have to overcome or endure. Colin explains three issues from his perspective. “Firstly, due to build zone, the increasing cost of land is something that has proven to be troublesome. Sometimes the cost of land doesn’t leave a lot of money for construction in the overall budget. The second, would be the ever increasing restrictions that councils and government are placing on the building regulations. This includes factors such as setbacks or density. Lastly, and not that Carter Grange wish to build anything but sustainable homes, the energy rating requirement, something that has increased over the years and no doubt will continue to do so requires that certain, somewhat expensive mechanisms needed to put in place to comply. These issues are some that the building industry are facing now and will continue to face in the future.”
Before finding himself in sales, Colin was trained and worked in the architectural field. “In the early days, I found myself working closely with several clients. That actually led me to have an interest in sales. I’ve been very fortunate to have worked with some very high quality builders and architects. Some of their skills and expertise has certainly rubbed off on me. I have a real passion for residential design and architecture. Carter Grange Homes. is to ensure that every client we deal with has a fantastic and rewarding experience and that we, have continual improvement in our business. This also means and extends to our product; the quality of the design and the build itself.” Proudly states Colin.
Colin leaves our readers with a few words of advice on behalf of Carter Grange; advising us that, “People always talk about quality when they talk about building. We agree that quality is certainly about materials and workmanship but it’s more so about the quality of the design. No amount of shiny materials and surfaces will save a poorly designed home. I think I would like readers to understand the importance of making sure they are focusing on, and dealing with, skilled personnel when it comes to design. Someone who will consider the size and proportion of rooms, traffic flow and zoned areas. Just as importantly, someone who will make sure the design that’s being prepared is orientated to the North, a design that brings the outdoors inside and considers the site’s features, because these things are incredibly important.”