Jump to content


ebuild is sad to announce its closure - it has become too time and resource intensive to develop, manage and maintain.

However, ebuild will remain on-line in archive mode (ie no posting facilties) for several weeks so that users can use it as an information resource.

Isle Of Wight Grand Designs - 23rd September 2015


  • Please log in to reply
32 replies to this topic

#1 AliG

AliG

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 271 posts

Posted 29 September 2015 - 10:31 PM

I just got round to watching this.

The outside of the house was beautiful.

They quoted 7000sq ft and a build cost of £850,000 which seemed unlikely as it had a basement and an outside pool. I thought £1.1m was more likely. They did say that they would probably go over budget and hadn't really set a budget.

In the end the house cost £2.2m to build and almost ruined them.

Many of the materials were non standard and hand made.

Did anyone else see this and feel that the architect should have taken some responsibility for not warning the couple how expensive things were likely to be and not considering it when designing the house?

http://www.channel4....s/grand-designs

Edited by AliG, 29 September 2015 - 10:49 PM.


#2 Eagerbeaver

Eagerbeaver

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 199 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:23 AM

I really enjoyed this and felt it deserved to be on a program called Grand Designs but some of the detail like the nail fixings of the wooden cladding was terrible.

I also felt that the guy (Bram) was unfair to his suppliers saying that if anyone wants paying, they will just have to wait. His inability to manage a budget shouldn't give his suppliers a problem.

Great location, a dream house but at the cost of a nightmare debt. I would not be able to sleep if I was him.

#3 jamiehamy

jamiehamy

    Water Tank Conversion

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 601 posts
  • LocationGourock/Largs

Posted 30 September 2015 - 05:30 AM

*
POPULAR

I don't have a TV and very rarely watch it, so get spared programmes like GD, which i've never found to be very helpful to a self builder. But I do know that if I had a pound coin for everytime someone asked us if we were going to be on GD, I could nearly give up work!

#4 DavidFrancis

DavidFrancis

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 156 posts
  • LocationSouth-west Lancashire

Posted 30 September 2015 - 06:12 AM

Didn't the architect (who, I think, had his own build on GD a few years ago) say early on in the programme that there were often cheaper options for some of the elements of the build but they always went for the most expensive?

Agree about the cladding fixings. Looked like they were already starting the rust, and placed rather randomly.

I also thought it looked great from the outside.

#5 ProDave

ProDave

    Self build in the Highlands

  • Moderators
  • 5,960 posts
  • LocationScottish Highlands

Posted 30 September 2015 - 07:10 AM

it staggers me how a house goes more than £1M over budget, yet somehow they manage to find that from somewhere.

Most of us mere mortals would have been bankrupted by that.

I often think I don't really have the resources to self build and I just muddle along regardless.

#6 billt

billt

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 56 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 08:24 AM

Kevin McCloud made a telling comment early in the programme, along the lines of "there's something of footballers wives about this project.". He was spot on, although he didn't follow it up.

It was a boring, gross excercise in conspicuous consumption, and didn't look terribly well constructed. The flint work looked pretty coarse to me, for intance. (Still an interesting programme though!)

#7 notnickclegg

notnickclegg

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,126 posts
  • LocationHampshire/Surrey Borders

Posted 30 September 2015 - 08:26 AM

I thought the guy a couple of weeks before that was pretty bad, but the Isle of Wight couple were one of the worst examples of a self build that I can recall.

In my opinion, the design was forgettable both inside and out, other than from that one aspect that looked nice. The build, fittings and fixtures looked cheap - certainly I couldn't see where over £2m build costs went. Say what you like about the perfectionist a couple of weeks before, but his build was half the cost and looked three times as expensive.

I also couldn't believe anyone would have thought a house of that size could have been built for £850,000 (about £1300 per sqm), given that the self builder did none of the work and there's a full size basement, a pool, loads of hand installed pebble cladding and bespoke hand made panels involved. I guessed £1.5m at the very start. Even though I thought they were hugely optimistic, I was surprised that the final figure was well over £3000 per sqm (although I suspect the costs included things like the pool and landscaping, which really shouldn't be included). That suggests a serious lack of budget control given that there weren't any obviously blingy finishes like acres of marble.

I found her comments about what made the place special telling. She talked about things like going to sleep and waking up to the sound of the sea, and sitting watching the ships move in and out of the Solent on a Saturday night. I think that should have been the focus from the start. They could have built a large, beautiful, comfortable and well specced 4 bed house for half a million and still got all those benefits!

Perhaps surprisingly, in the end I felt really sorry for them. I actually suspect that both of them were in serious need of counselling following his near death. Taking on this much stress and debt was the last thing either of them needed, but I suspect they felt there was no way out once they'd started. A lot of what they said sounded like self-justification. Sad really.

And yet people ask all the time why we didn't try to get on Grand Designs!

Jack

Edited by notnickclegg, 30 September 2015 - 04:41 PM.


#8 joe90

joe90

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 847 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 08:29 AM

I am glad he is not my accountant!!! He has no idea about budget and yes they did say some things could be sourced cheaper but hey, what does it matter !!, After a life threatening experience ( which to a lesser degree I have also had) he should be concentrating on less stress ( he now has to work all the hours God sends) and enjoy his life with his family. I am surprised he got planning permission for such a lovely spot but that is probably because I am still fighting planners to replace what I had on site.

As I have said before, it makes good TV for the masses ( but not us lot who really care about what we build). :-)

Edited by joe90, 30 September 2015 - 08:32 AM.


#9 declan52

declan52

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 3,087 posts
  • LocationCo. armagh

Posted 30 September 2015 - 11:39 AM

Was it not the best example of how not to do a self build. Pick an architect who likes the bling to be kind and give him free reign on everything and end up getting 11 different loans to finish the house.
Why did a man who nearly died start to build a house of such extravagance that he will have to work more hours to pay off. Bonkers to me.
To be fair though it was some pad except the nailing of the cladding and the TV aerial sticking out the side of the gable.

#10 notnickclegg

notnickclegg

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,126 posts
  • LocationHampshire/Surrey Borders

Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:39 PM

View Postdeclan52, on 30 September 2015 - 11:39 AM, said:

To be fair though it was some pad except the nailing of the cladding and the TV aerial sticking out the side of the gable.

My wife and I audibly gasped when we saw the rust-streaked nails in the cladding. They were like that after only a few months and will clearly need replacing before long. Who'd go with anything less than stainless fixings in a marine environment?

Jack

#11 djh99

djh99

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 147 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 01:54 PM

View Postnotnickclegg, on 30 September 2015 - 01:39 PM, said:

My wife and I audibly gasped when we saw the rust-streaked nails in the cladding. They were like that after only a few months and will clearly need replacing before long. Who'd go with anything less than stainless fixings in a marine environment?

Jack
It's possible they were stainless - A2 - it'll do that in a marine environment. Always use A4 near the sea.

#12 notnickclegg

notnickclegg

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,126 posts
  • LocationHampshire/Surrey Borders

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:28 PM

View Postdjh99, on 30 September 2015 - 01:54 PM, said:

It's possible they were stainless - A2 - it'll do that in a marine environment. Always use A4 near the sea.

Within weeks though?

Jack

#13 declan52

declan52

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 3,087 posts
  • LocationCo. armagh

Posted 30 September 2015 - 02:37 PM

If I was spending what he spent I would expect whatever materials that were being used would be suitable.

#14 Redoctober

Redoctober

    Regular Member

  • Member Blogger
  • PipPipPip
  • 183 posts
  • LocationMilton Keynes

Posted 30 September 2015 - 03:53 PM

I have to agree with the above - Though I thought the house itself sat well in the plot I would have concerns about leaf drop and the swimming pool.

Throughout this programme I got the impression his wife was determined to build an extravagance and used the poor blokes illness as justification. Maybe the illness stripped him off his backbone !

Some of his facial impressions when discussing the finances were priceless but honestly..................did it really need so much money spending on it to achieve what they have - lovely views!

#15 joe90

joe90

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 847 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 04:12 PM

As per redoctober above, call me cynical but if he did pass away then perhaps his life insurance would pay for it, if not he works all hours to pay for it, win win for her, ( duck! Incoming. )

#16 notnickclegg

notnickclegg

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1,126 posts
  • LocationHampshire/Surrey Borders

Posted 30 September 2015 - 04:12 PM

View PostRedoctober, on 30 September 2015 - 03:53 PM, said:

.........did it really need so much money spending on it to achieve what they have - lovely views!

Exactly!

Jack

#17 AliG

AliG

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 271 posts

Posted 30 September 2015 - 06:15 PM

You're spot on Jack, the setting and views would have been there for a much less expensive house.

People have mentioned Clinton the perfectionist from a couple of weeks ago. I felt that he was quite a sad lonely person in the end. The quality of finish and detailing on his house, however, was fantastic. Hence my comment that I loved the outside of the Isle of Wight house. They didn't really show much of the inside but it certainly didn't look like the inside of a £2m build.

I was genuinely scared for guy's health in the end and unlike Clinton I felt a lot sorrier for him, I think it was because he seemed like a nice enough bloke who had got carried away. I don't know if anyone remembers the house with the inverse winged roof a few years ago where the guy argued about the price of everything. He was a quite unsympathetic character but he was visibly being hurt by the stress he was putting himself under, as well I think as actually hurt by spraining his ankle!

To Declan's point I had the chance to buy a great plot a few years ago. At the time I made the decision that the cost of the plot and the house would mean working another 6 or 7 years to pay for it. My decision then was I'd rather be retired earlier and not stressed by having a massive mortgage. I'd give the same advice to anyone.

It brings up broader questions about budgeting for a self build. Of course everyone has different aims and different budgets, but I am certainly finding that most efforts to keep the price of things down is met with the accusation of being penny pinching and that it isn't worth it within the overall cost of the build. In general this may be right, but dozens of decisions made like this quickly turns into tens of thousands of pounds. It seems that there can be a feeling that once you have decided to build a certain design of house then you are stuck with it and have to spend whatever is necessary to get it built. This is a dangerous way to spend money. It can partly be avoided though by trying to design a house to your budget, something which two of this year's projects have totally failed to do.

I would often like to know what people have spent relative to the value of the houses. Quite a few GD houses have struggled to sell over the years, certainly at prices commensurate with their build cost. The participants are often very reticent to talk about this.

One last point on Grand Designs. Other than a few eco builds, the people seem often totally unconcerned with insulation in their houses.This house for example appeared to have a single glazed hallway and once again massive amounts of frameless windows, also I am not sure about the curved glass walled room's insulation. I am surprised they don't put more emphasis on the eco credentials of the houses. Instead to make better entertainment we are likely to get difficult to build houses where the costs spiral out of control. It is a shame as one of the reasons I like the show is that it is much more positive than most reality television. In general you are seeing people achieving a dream and I find it often quite uplifting. I was brought to tears by the soldier who had lost his legs building his house.

Edited by AliG, 30 September 2015 - 06:31 PM.


#18 ProDave

ProDave

    Self build in the Highlands

  • Moderators
  • 5,960 posts
  • LocationScottish Highlands

Posted 30 September 2015 - 06:41 PM

Certainly some interesting points.

The IOW house is on a £900K plot. That in itself sounds stupidly expensive for the IOW but nobody would buy a £900K plot and put a £200K house on it would they?

I briefly thought about seeing if any of the tv programs would be interested in out house. I doubt grand designs would have been as it's not grand or unique, but £100K house may have been as that would be great if we could build it for £100K but I very much doubt it will be that cheap. But given our present situation still waiting for a buyer for the old house, I can just see they would focus too much on the doom and gloom, cue the depressing music etc, rather than the house build itself.

The point about not wanting an expensive house and preferring to retire earlier instead is really the main drive for our new build. Part of the objective is to end up with a low energy low running cost house, but another major "want" is the new house will cost less to build than the old one sells for and we will release some capital in the process. It remains to be seen how successful we are in that respect.

#19 declan52

declan52

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 3,087 posts
  • LocationCo. armagh

Posted 30 September 2015 - 06:58 PM

Buy a plot for £200k and build a £900k house. That's what I would do.
As far penny pinching I done it the whole way through my build and without doing it that way my house wouldn't have got finshed. No matter who is doing a self build you have to have a budget to work to. Otherwise when you do bargin some supplier down you won't get as much of a buzz and for a moment or two smile a bit being all chuffed with yourselve.

#20 bitpipe

bitpipe

    Regular Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 747 posts
  • LocationBerkshire

Posted 30 September 2015 - 07:59 PM

GD is TV entertainment and I expect the producers filter out 95% of submissions as not being potentially entertaining enough (i.e. sensible design, budget, participants etc..). Now and again they have a build that I can relate to but mostly they are either eccentric individuals or projects.

That said, glass of wine is in hand as tonight's GD is about to show...need something to flush the EPS beads out of my system...