I guess no decision is final until we’ve signed on the dotted line as Mick and I have re-opened the oven and cooktop discussion for debate:
With the current layout of the kitchen, it would sacrifice too much bench space/flow/windows to have an inbuilt oven (above bench height anyway). This, coupled with our resolve not to get old and feeble for a few more years (fingers crossed), Mick and I have agreed that we will get an upright oven and cooktop. Ideally it must be large enough to accommodate my huge roasting pan (a major part of Mick’s decision to build a house…true story!) and be at least catalytic if not pyralytic. Unfortunately, there is still much debate over whether or not to go gas or electric for the cooktop. Ceran is easier to clean and use, but gas is better for cooking and not reliant on electricity. I really like both so don’t mind either way, but all-in-all (and there’s a long list of pros and cons) I’m leaning towards gas and Mick is leaning towards ceran. We’ll be thinking on this for a while yet!
Just to add further fuel to the debate, Baumatic as a brand do not have good reviews, though I can’t find any reviews on the exact ovens we’re looking at. In fact, most Baumatic products get a rating of one or two out of five, and it seems to be common that the oven doors shatter and knobs break after about three months. This does not fill us with confidence, so Mick will be looking at the option of getting a credit back from Rawson and choosing a different oven. As always, we’ll keep you posted.
There’s not too much else to report. Next door have most of their first story bricked and glazed (from what we saw on our quick drive-by to check on the land) and there’s a new temporary fence there now. Soon most of the plants will be removed (this needs to be done prior to building commencing) and the left side possibly levelled. We have a quote for the plant removal, but not the levelling. Also, I would like to try and sell (for cheap) the sculptural plants (they look like Yuccas) as they’re expensive to purchase that large and could be a good deal for someone, and I would like to see them have a good home. Also Mum and I will save the Agapanthus for transplanting and the hedge on the left side can stay as long as it doesn’t interfere with the driveway…but the rest are for the chop! We just don’t have the yard to spare at the back and the side needs to be clear for access. We had hoped to keep the rear hedging but it’s too far out from the fence (smack bang in the middle of our lawn!) and against the fence are trees which are too large and have an insect problem. The long-term plan is to replace the fence (which is like a pool-fence) with a wooden one and plant along it for our garden, but to save on money, the short-term solution for privacy will be to run bamboo screening (cheap from Bunnings) along it. No point planting a screening hedge if we’re going to replace the fence.
Anyway, I will continue my research efforts (and earn my keep as “Project Lead!”) as we wait for check plans. That’s when the fun really begins as we can get costing on render and make final decisions on external colours and finishes.