What is the REAL value of an Architect?

“Australian architects involved in dwelling design create significant and innovative design outcomes; however, this effort is mainly directed to achieving elite objects for a privileged minority.”  Shane Murray, reHousing Conference, Melbourne 2007 Ten years later, this is still widely the case in Australian residential architecture, with less than 4% of new home owners appreciating the value of architect designed homes …

Sustainability meets liveability

With 60% of the world’s electricity being consumed by residential and commercial buildings in developed countries, space heating accounting for a further 60% of residential energy consumption and water heating representing 18% of domestic usage, it’s clear that new homes must be designed to reduce energy consumption/wastage and the subsequent impact on the environment. However, designing a genuinely sustainable home …

Building a new home? Arrange a Free Onsite Ideas Meeting.

Imagine you’ve just bought a block of land and you’re ready to build your dream home. You have all your ideas and plans clear in your mind. Then as it starts to unfold, you realise it isn’t going to be as straightforward as you first thought.  “The orientation isn’t perfect”… “The covenant won’t allow some of your ideas”… “The zoning won’t allow …

Stunning split level homes on sloping blocks

Sadly for some South East Queensland home builders, the world isn’t flat. However, that doesn’t stop them wanting to build their “cookie cutter” homes exclusively on perfectly flat or gently undulating land. That option is becoming more and more unlikely in South East Queensland. Most of the level lots are developed and long gone, and the remaining pockets of land …

Frequently Asked Questions About Building on a Sloping Blocks.

As a leading Brisbane builder – Civic Steel Homes are often asked about building on a steep or sloping block. Some questions in particular, especially about costs, keep recurring. So in the interest of informing potential clients about the pros and cons of construction on a hilly homesite, we present answers to the most frequently asked questions. Q. Does building …

Narrow lots have lots of potential.

Thinking about building on a narrow lot? You’re not alone. Narrow lot homes are becoming more and more popular, particularly in the Brisbane metropolitan area where the Brisbane City Council is strongly promoting subdivision

Seeing RED (tape)

Building compliance Gone are the days of buying a block and simply applying for a building approval. Unfortunately the red tape associated with council by-laws and covenants can make building a house extremely complicated and quite daunting for a lot of people. Whether it is inner city re-builds, master planned estates or environmentally sensitive zones, the list of overlays and …

Small lot design requires big picture thinking

Just because you have a small lot, there is absolutely no reason why it can’t be the site for a brilliant new home full of big ideas. As Southeast Queensland grows and urban density increases, smart home design and the clever use of space has become paramount. Small lot design with Queensland in mind With a good inner city builder, small lot design does not mean …

Difficult blocks? No, interesting challenges!

Builders either love difficult blocks, or hate them…there is no middle ground. That’s because while some Brisbane home builders think of them as problems, others look at them as opportunities. Civic Steel Homes are in the latter group, in fact over the years we have become the difficult block specialists who simply don’t have a ‘too hard basket’. We believe …

The amazing flexibility of Steel Framed Homes

As ironic as it may sound, very few building products are as flexible as steel framing. Naturally we’re not talking about physical flexibility here – after all steel home designs is as strong as they come – but rather flexibility of design. Building steel framed homes offers numerous advantages: Versatility Strength Longevity Light weight Sustainable Termite proof Using steel framing …

Contemporary homes Brisbane: Everything old is new…again.

Contemporary home design in Brisbane has gone full circle. Wallpaper is back in vogue, taking the design scene by storm with stylish patterns and eye-popping colours that resonate with contemporary yet timeless styles. They boast for example sleek chrome, vibrant shades, geometric shapes, bold floral patterns and stripes. Designers never really stopped using wallpaper to add interest and style to …

Brief Bigger Than Budget?

After 15 years in the custom building industry I am yet to meet anyone whose brief isn’t bigger than their building budget. It is human nature to want far more than you wish to pay for. However don’t despair; your custom builder is there to help you build smarter. Four main factors that can strain a build budget are: • …

Brisbane builders’ environmentally designed homes featured in The Westerner

Leading Brisbane builders, Civic Steel Homes, have once again been featured in The Westerner. The article, called “Environmentally designed homes ease financial stress,” focuses on how sustainable design techniques can be used to save money in the long term. (Many of these sustainable design principles are explained in “10 Tips For Energy Efficient Home Design” – a real ‘must-read’.) Builders …

A Brisbane builder’s thoughts on great bathroom design

At Civic Steel Homes, we’ve helped many people create fantastic bathrooms as part of their new homes. And like any room, we believe that when designing your bathroom it’s important to concentrate on functionality — then the visual elements will follow. Here are two key points to consider when planning your new bathroom… Home builder tip 1: Divide up your …

Tips from a sustainable home builder — how to create the best acreage home design for your needs

When it comes to building your dream acreage home, there’s really no limit to what you can achieve – especially if you want to be sustainable. [See “10 Tips For Energy Efficient Home Design“] The vast amount of available space means you can design your house to be as liveable as possible… unlike the design constraints when building a townhouse …

Insulation — the secret to cool summer living in your sustainable home

In the sweltering summer heat, we Queenslanders are constantly trying to keep our homes pleasantly cool. So when designing your new sustainable home, you want to ensure that achieving a comfortable, LIVEABLE space is as easy, affordable and environmentally friendly as possible. [See “10 Tips for Energy Efficient Home Design“] Insulation plays a huge role in maintaining the right temperature …