We recently sold our house on the central coast and bought an apartment on the top of an art-deco block in Sydney but we don't take posession until 1st December 2008 (our buyer wanted 6 months to sell his place).
The apartment is approx 87sq M. It currently has 3 bedrooms but we plan to join two together to create a master bedroom with a study/dressing area and turn the other bedroom into a dining room. We also plan to use the space in the existing passageway to enlarge the bathroom and bedroom space.
A plan showing our intended changes to the apartment is above. Pictures of the interior can be found here together a 3D rendering which illustrates where we plan to remove some walls and add doorways.
The original 1930 plans of the apartment can be found here http://www.softmarksolutions.com/85macleay/.
As you can see from the plans and photos, there are extensive beams that cross the apartment which carry the loadings from the roof and therefore we believe all the interior walls are non-structural (this is also the opinion of a structural engineer but he has yet to visit the site).
We are trying to preserve the original ceilings but due to the poor state of the paint (caused by using modern paints over Kalsomine we believe) it may be easier and cheaper to tear some down and replace with gryproc and new plaster mouldings. The walls also have paint cracks/crazing caused by the same reason.
We have access to the attic space in the pitched roof above the apartment and we plan to use this for to supply reverse cycle air conditioning - probably small duct high velocity systems which require smaller vents and ducts.
As we see it the jobs involved are:
- Tear down non-load bearing walls between bedrooms & make good
- Tear out existing kitchen and bathroom
- Remove non-structual internal wall between living room and balcony and add bi-fold doors.
- Add additional walls to increase size of bathroom/master bedroom & close off existing master bedroom door.
- Strip/Remake/Seal remaining ceilings and walls and make good
- Aircon ducting and vents[/font]
- Sand existing hardwood floor (seal later)
- New tile/floor tiles for kitchen & bathroom[/font]
- Wiring for lighting, power sockets, kitchen & bathroom, aircon system
- Wiring for LAN and AV
- Kitchen cabinets & under-lighting
- Bathroom cabinets & glass walling (also possibly move toilet waste pipe - the toilet is currently not located where shown on the original plans)-
Wardrobes in master bedroom
- Desking/shelving in study area of bedroom
- Murphy (pull-down) bed and cabinet enclosure in new dining rom (we don't want the bed to be too comfortable for visitors!)
- Display shelf cabinet in living room
- Paint & decorate
I have previously renovated my apartment in the UK and the place here (including re-wiring, plumbing, new floors, false ceilings, tiling, new bathroom, lighting, fitting kitchen (basically every job except plastering and cabinetry) but I'm not a pro by any means.
Move in or store?
But we have a reasonable budget for this job to outsource and time is an issue given that most tradies will take off between 15th Dec to 15th Jan. We have to move out of our Central Coast property on 1st December - so should we put our furniture in storage and get the project started ASAP? Or move in with a minimum of furniture and plan to move out in January when the tradies return ?
Who manages the project?
We're torn between project managing the reno ourselves (but we live 80Km up the coast), giving it to an architect (not a structural job?), giving it to an interior designer (not a big job?) or going to a freelance project manager based on the drawings/plans from either an architect or interior designer. Also should we look for multiple tradies or a single builder who sub-contracts certain elements?
DevelopmentApplication or Construction Certificate?
The building is in a heritage area but I don't believe this covers the internal changes we plan to make (we plan to leave wall nibs and beams where the two internal walls are removed) also other units in the block have already removed internal walls. We already have a structural engineer lined up and we're not making external changes. The Body Corporate requires plans and an engineers report.
Suggestions, hints, tips welcome