Pre Start List

With our prestart booked for next week with Summit Homes I thought I’d share my ‘pre start check list’ with you all.


  • Add additional conduits for power
  • Separate power circuit for pool
  • Home security wiring
  • Door bell
  • Data cable throughout
  • Check placement of light switches
  • Add dimmers
  • Check every power point placement
  • Add power points to kitchen island bench, WIL (for charging the Dyson), bathroom vanity cupboard (for electric toothbrushes) & add one to vanity drawers for straighteners / blow dryer
  • Add points for microwave, dishwashers, coffee machine, fridge, toaster ect in scullery & kitchen cupboards
  • Add addition points to laundry, scullery & kitchen
  • Points in hallways
  • Points for floor lamps
  • Add USB points to storage cupboard, office & bedrooms
  • Extra External power points for Christmas lights
  • Conduit in alfresco roof for fan
  • Add gas, power & water to alfresco
  • Light in manhole
  • Check garage lighting & entry lights
  • Add power points to garage / check garage roof power
  • Check placement of meter box
  • Add extra external lighting – one near the clothes line
  • Add provisions for smart wiring / internet / ability to hide all cords in the wall
  • Duel lighting in hallways
  • Add downlights to eaves
  • External light switch in alfresco
  • Foxtel conduit
  • Check air con is refrigerated
  • Power points for pool area
  • Extra TV points
  • Points

Kitchen / scullery

  • Add 1 x bin drawer in kitchen, 1 x scullery
  • Check oven placement is centred
  • Check kitchen shelving / cupboards are adjustable
  • Check height of kitchen overhead cupboards
  • Make bulkhead in kitchen flush with the cupboards
  • Fridge tap, place off centre or in cupboard next to the fridge cavity so fridge will sit flush
  • Check depth & width of recesses for fridge / dishwasher / microwave ect
  • Size of pot drawers


  • Hide washing machine taps
  • Add additional power points
  • Add laundry window, non opening
  • Extend bench top in laundry over washing machine
  • Add pull out clothing hamper in laundry
  • Add glass door from laundry to scullery. Possibly frosted?
  • Drainage in Laundry & Bathrooms
  • Add exhaust fan to laundry

Bathrooms / Powder room

  • Remove niche in showers & change to a step up ledge
  • Upgrade tile size in wet areas
  • Check placement of exhaust vents
  • Possibly add door from dressing room to bathroom
  • Change door type to en suite toilet
  • Locks on doors to bathrooms & toilets
  • Separate switches for exhaust fan & lights in bathrooms & powder room
  • Check location of taps in showers
  • Remove soap dishes
  • Add wall taps to vanities
  • Add bath recess, guest bathroom
  • Shower drainage grills in showers
  • Add privacy locks


  • Raise door height to 28c
  • Raise ceiling height to 31c throughout
  • Remove bulk head in master suite
  • Change window in scullery, laundry & bathrooms to non opening window
  • Check that all windows & doors are centred
  • Check window sizes
  • Check if windows can be tinted prior to installation
  • Check which windows are frosted
  • Add cat door
  • Extend garage for addition storage
  • Manhole in garage
  • Reconfigure theatre entry
  • Sound proofing options for theatre room
  • Solid doors for theatre
  • Add step up to theatre room
  • Check cornices in entry ways are flush
  • Check if there are cornices on bulkheads
  • Check HWS placement & aircon placement
  • Check air con vent placement
  • Check that everything is suitable for coastal weather
  • Ensure door from garage to house is solid & has a lock
  • Put switch to open/close garage roller door in shoppers entry
  • Add window to garage


  • Extend eaves 
  • Add extra tap
  • Check tap placement
  • Check downpipe placement & where water will run
  • Add retic / power pipe under driveway
  • Extend alfresco to the edge of the garage
  • What type of screens are used on windows
  • Check draining options for backyard
  • Check about adding a slope at the front for stairs to entry
  • Side paving options for laundry side of the house


  • Check all doors, which way they open, size, if they block anything
  • Check size & height of guest bath
  • Check bottom doors sit flush to the floor
  • Ask about skirting boards
  • Double check “line of sight” from each room
  • Look at increasing door width throughout
  • Is roof insulation included
  • Back sliding down options
  • Are door stops included?
  • Ducted vacuum options?
  • Do all vents, vent outside, not in roof?

Things to remember during build

  • Document everything, keep communication together in the one spot, save emails
  • Keep diary of all dates once construction starts and all notes of conversations, emails, costs etc with builder in case something needs to be discussed and clarified
  • Take photos of each room at various stages for down the track when drilling or hanging pictures
  • Insist on 3 coat painting 1 x sealer 2 x top coat
  • Ask for excess sand to be removed from site if not required
  • Ask council/builder for refund of kerb/path damage bond if it has been paid
  • Check that no rubbish has been buried on site
  • Obtain all warranties, instruction manuals, serial numbers for all products installed in the house from the builder
  • Ensure copies of your plans and personal details are not dumped into skip
  • Check provisional sums at the end of the build, before handover, for complete breakdown & receipts of costings

We added in most of the upgrades at design, which has saved us a lot time putting together our pre start list.

Looking forward to sharing our pre start selections with you soon xxx


Choosing our Builder

We have all heard horror stories about builders, blown out budgets & jobs left unfinished. Let’s face it, choosing the right builder is one of the most important decisions you will make on your house building journey.


When Ad’s & I first set out to find a) A house design we both loved & b) A builder. We really went in blind. I’ll admit it, in the beginning we didn’t realise how valuable it was for us to have extensive knowledge of the process, what we were getting & the quality of what we were signing up for. You walk into a display home, with its high end fittings & upgrades & think, wow this is great. Then you quickly learn that not much of what you see in the display home is actually included in the price you were quoted.

It felt like we had looked at every display home in the Perth Metro & we still hadn’t found, the One! We knew what we wanted & being the Queen of OCD, I had scrapbooks of images, Pinterest folders & a written list the size of the 31c ceilings we wanted throughout! But nothing was the right fit. Feeling frustrated & to be honest, completely over it, we made the mistake of compromising what we really wanted for something we weren’t 100% happy with.

We met with a particular Perth builder & were promised a gorgeous home, plus a ton of incredible inclusions, the salesman even sent us an email saying the General Manager of the company was so interested in having our business that he wanted to personally offer us another $30,000 off the total price. Now before you start judging us & saying “you idiots, were you both high on drugs to fall for that rubbish?”…… the way, we weren’t 😂. I think we were both just so overwhelmed & sadly, completely over the process before it had even begun.

2 weeks later we were presented with a drawing of our house plans, a custom design that was meant to be a perfect fit for our family, the block & our budget. After a few tweaks here & there, we both felt happy with the design & decided to pay our $2,000 deposit.

From there things went South very quickly. Our final plans were lost, things we were promised were not written down correctly & very quickly our build budget had blown out!

You know the saying, always trust your gut instinct? Well my instinct was flashing up red warning signs & doing back fits in my stomach with a sledge-hammer in its hand trying to get my attention! & after another error with lost paperwork Adam rang the builder & told them that we will not be moving forward with them. Surprisingly we even got our deposit back.

So here we were, back to square one & gosh it felt like such a relief. Adam & I researched, talked to friends, looked at more display homes, read reviews on builders, looked at endless house plans, we even stopped at several building sites to have a nosey at the work of different companies.

During our research, one builder that was regularly mentioned with great reviews was Summit Homes We had spoken with friends who had recently finished their build with Summit & we were both very impressed with the design, the quality & the finish of our friends beautiful new home.

That weekend we met with Glenn from Summit Homes & laid out what we wanted. We told him our budget & gave him our lists of must have’s, would like, etc. plus pictures I had continued to save. Hoping he understood our vision, we left him to work his magic & hopefully create our dream home.

A few days later we met again with Glenn & he showed us the design he had created. He walked us through the plans & explained in detail what was included, what wasn’t, what every line, dash & dot on our plans meant. This was it, our gorgeous new dream home. Glenn had somehow managed to dissect, connect & make sense of the vision I was trying to explain & had in my mind……..believe me, not an easy task! Here was our new home.


House Plans 1st Draft

Adam & I were thrilled with the custom design & felt so much more at ease with Summit Homes. We received a complete break down of costings, what was included, the specifications as well as information on site costs & an estimated time line.

We had found our builder.





242 Leach Hwy Myaree WA 6154
Phone: 08 9317 0100


2 / 100 Blair Street Bunbury WA 6230
Phone: 08 9722 0300


5 / 62 Kent Street, Busselton WA 6280
Phone: 08 9722 0370



Building our Dream Home


After searching for the perfect block of land to build our new home, for what seemed like years, we finally found this gorgeous block by the beach in Secret Harbour, a suburb of Perth.

So here it is, our soon to be, new home location, 748sqm of gorgeous dirt 😂

A little about us……………..

I’m Em, a thirty something year old Product / Interior stylist, I do tend to lie about my age, so much so that I have literally confused myself with my actual ‘real’ number, so thirty something it is! I live in Perth Western Australia with my Hubby, Adam, our gorgeous 10-year-old daughter Ava & our 2 cats, Wong & Walter.

IMG_20180622_143540467Adam is a Business Improvement Manager in the Oil & Gas industry & works mainly in the City. Ava is in Primary School & I work as a stylist. I receive regular DM’s on my Instagram page @stilettos_and_bricks asking the meaning behind my business name, Stilettos & Bricks. I am a lover of high heels shoes, in fact I only own shoes with heels, even my trainers have a wedge heel 🙈 You can imagine how utterly ridiculous I look walking around a building site, surrounded by tools, bricks & portable potties, sinking deep into the dirt in my inappropriate, high shoes! Hence, Stilettos & Bricks was born………. Stilettos & Porta Loo doesn’t have the same ring to it.

Ad’s & I have been married for 11 years & this is our first build together, we have only ever brought established homes before. So fingers crossed this build has a happy ending & isn’t a remake of the War of Roses!

Our Block

I will be documenting our entire building journey right here, the good, the bad & the ugly. So buckle your seat belts folks & get ready to travel the Building Journey with us, Stilettos & Bricks Style.

Until next time, 💖 Em xxx