Ask the designer

Planning your new home`s design, renovating or extending your house is not just challenging, but also brings up a lot of questions about regulations, permits, town planning. The purpose of our Ask the Designer page is to give you lots of valuable information so you can get prepared. Have a browse through our topics and see if somebody has already asked something similar. Or to save time, type your question topic in the Search box and see what you find. If you can`t find the answer for you question, click on the orange Ask your question here button. Our team will get back to you as soon as possible.


Ask the designer

What is the minimum size we should allow for a single entry person lift for our new 3 level home design?

It really depends on the lift manufacturer as they come in all shapes and sizes. However a good rule of thumb is to ensure the shaft is no smaller than 1500 wide x 1400 Deep. This will allow you to have a range of different lifts to choose from.

What options are available for roof styles?

There are three types of roof styles:

Hip style roof has always been a classic option and will remain timeless. Being a cost effective solution it offers wider eaves which provides good shading around the home and prevent rain from discolouring wall surfaces.

Skillion roofs are a more modern option and have been a trend since the early 2000’s. Though being a more modern option it is still a cost effective solution and provides good protection from the elements.

Parapet walls are currently in style as can be seen in modern style homes. By hiding the roof planes and gutters from ground level view, it gives your home a clean and crisp look modern look.

It is important to choose the right roof for the right areas of your home. Consider the orientation of the sun in relation to your opening and ensure that it meets the room’s functional needs. 

What options are available for external wall finishes?

Most common external wall finishes is rendered or face brickwork as they are sturdy and reliable. However with the modern trend for lightweight and environmentally friendly materials, you have options such as Fibro Cement wall cladding. Check out James Hardie’s website at for the range offered ranging from traditional to modern finishes all aiming to give your home a personal touch.

Another great product is Hebel which is rapidly growing in popularity, as it is cheaper, has a solid feel and  environmentally responsible in comparison to brickwork. Check out their website at for great ideas as well as more information into how your home can contribute to the environment without compromising the looks of your new home.

Are you looking for a stylish modern home? Check out Alucabond’s website at for ideas on how to give your home a stylish modern feel. Though it is used heavily in commercial projects, the cladding can give your home a very modern feel

All claddings have advantages and disadvantages however, when choosing external cladding it is important to always consider the room it encloses as well as where it is located as this will have on your home such as heating and cooling. 

We have an old sliding door roughly 6 meters long from our living to alfresco, what are our options for replacing this door?

Generally there are three options:

Stacker doors are your general slider which comes in 3-6 panels depending on the opening size. It is a cost effective solution and gives you a big opening, however the tracks holding the doors are wide and may not fit the depth of the wall.

Centre opening 4 panel sliders is another cost effective solution and also have minimal track width. Their only drawback is that they do not provide as much opening as other options.

Bi-fold doors are very fashionable and provide the greatest opening with minimal track width. The drawback is the cost and is difficult to install flyscreens.

Check out some of your local door and windows manufacture for more ideas.

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Kelie Savage Camp Hill
We are very happy with the work Otto has done for us in the design for townhouses. He is very easy to deal with, open to our suggestions and very happy to listen to our requests and explain why he...