Building your new home… SOME Frequently Asked Questions

Can we get a fixed price contract?

Yes you can, however, your price may include some PC Sums and/or Provisional Costs on items that are not able to be properly priced at the time you want to get started.
These are generally such things as Earthworks, Drainage and Foundations as they are all solely reliant on what we find underneath your site when we start to dig.

How long will it take to build my home?

This will depend on the size of your new home. Generally, it takes about 3-4 weeks to complete a smaller home up to the size of 80m2 and 6-8weeks for anything that is larger
up to our 200m2 homes. It will, more often than not, come down to the availability of the required sub-trades like drain layers and electricians etc.

Whats included in my build contract and what is not?

We have a standard list of these on our website, however, for a more detailed list of these for your specific project we will provide you a full list of inclusions and exclusions
with your building contract.

For example... we will always include our standard spec floor coverings and painting allowances for all our homes unless it is specifically listed as an exclusion in your contract.

Any extra costs to your build may come from you engaging a lawyer to read your contract or a third party contractor to do things that we don’t do-such as specialized sound
systems or swimming pools etc.

Can i make changes to the magpie starter homes plans?

Generally, no, however, if we don’t have a plan that suits your needs, we would be happy to design a new home for you from scratch.
The reason we don’t offer changes is because we want to offer you the best possible price and can only do this using standard plans and specifications.

You do however, have a wide range of options when it comes to flooring, roof colours, exterior wall colours and even internal paint colours.

What do you, the client, need to do?

We want you to enjoy this project and want to make it as stress-free for you as possible so, once you have decided what you want and we have all the information we need, we
will put together a contract for you and once this is accepted, we will take it from there.
We will keep you informed along the way, but generally, it will be just us working behind the scenes with the council and contractors to organise your project.
We take care of all the planning and council consenting process for you so it’s as easy for you as possible.
When we are ready to start on site, we will meet with you again to make sure everyone is on the same page. We may need your help to let your neighbour’s know what’s
happening and when.

Should we build on a concrete floor or timber?

That is completed up to you and your site conditions. For smaller homes that could be easily transported in the future, we recommend a timber floor. 
 For a more permanent home, we would recommend a concrete floor. 
 Our standard inclusions reflect our suggestions.

Why do we build homes using Metrapanel?

There’s a saying that I’m sure you have heard before” If you always do what you have always done, you’ll always get what you have always got!”

We want to build smarter, faster and aim for a better price than everyone else so we looked for a product that could help us achieve that. 

We found Metrapanel and haven’t looked back. It allows us to build 40-60% faster, our homes are stronger because of the panel products we use and because there’s so much
 less labour needed to build them, they work out cheaper when compared to a standard framing options.

 Metrapanel is a product produced by LaminexNZ where the panel is made from compressed wood fibre derived from plantation pine, and heat compressed with an exclusively
 formulated resin. The re-manufacturing plant then converts the raw board to pre-primed Metrapanel after applying two coats of specially formulated Resene sealant. 

Learn more about the Metrapanel product here 

What is the 'R' rating on a Metrapanel home?

By combining conventionally fitted joinery and exterior cladding (as per timber framed buildings) with Metrapanel, a thermal insulation rating of up to R6.0 can be achieved.

What is the 'Wind' rating on a Metrapanel home?

Metrapanel homes are limited to all Wind Zones up to and including Very High without the need for specific engineering.

What is the maximum snow loading for Metrapanel?

Snow loadings shall not exceed1.5kPa without specific engineering design.

How do the sound & Fire ratings of Metrapanel compare to traditional construction?

Metrapanel walls can provide an STC rating from 28 to 61 depending on the composition of the wall (statement from Auckland University 2006).
For noisy areas such as music rooms, home theatres and media centres, Metrapanel has a system that can achieve a STC50 rating.

For Inter-tenancy walls between separate household units, Metrapanel has a system that can achieve a desired STC61 rating. The inter-tenancy walls are constructed to provide
structural support and both fire and sound insulation between habitable spaces from one dwelling to another.

This Inter-tenancy Wall Design and Construction also boasts a FRR 30/30/30 fire resistance rating.

What does the term 'PC Sum' mean?

P C Sum refers to an estimated amount that we will provide to you in a build contract if we can’t give you fixed amount at the time of finalizing our contract with you. It is our 
 best effort to cover what we believe will be the end price without having all the facts at the time of pricing your project for you.
 The differences between the PC Sum and the actual cost will change the building contract. If more, the contract amount will increase, if less, it will decrease.

What does the term 'Provisional Sum' mean?

Provisional Sum refers to an amount that we will allow for in a build contract for specific items such as kitchens, bathrooms or landscaping. They need to be included in
 the contract, however, until you decide exactly which level of product you want us to use, they will only be allowances. 
 The differences between the Provisional Sum and the final cost will change the price in your building contract. If more, the contract amount will increase, if less, it will decrease.

Can you help me with some finance options?

Absolutely, Yes we can. We work with Mr Fred Birdling from Preferred Financial Services, who can help you with this.
He and his team have had many years’ experience helping clients in the mortgage market find a mortgage solution that fits their individual needs.

If you click on the “Finance” tab here on our website, you will see a link there where you will be able to send him a request to contact you.
He and his team can offer you a wide range of lending options.

Can you help me Subdivide my property?

No, however, we work with a company called Magpie Property Developments, who can offer you an in-depth knowledge and understanding of almost every aspect of
the subdivision process from the feasibility stage, right through to the construction and completion.

For more info about Subdivision please visit This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(Magpie Property Developments Ltd is an independent company from Magpie Starter Homes Ltd.)

For more specific detail to these and any other questions you may have about property development, please email us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.