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In January 2012 we started looking at display homes. This process resulted in us knowing exactly what we didn’t want to do – build with a volume builder. We wanted to work with a small firm, not a “chain”.

Looking at display homes did give us a good idea on how big we wanted our house to be. “3.5m x 3.7m” for a bedroom means nothing on paper – stand in the room with a bed in there too and you know exactly how big it is. We decided we needed around 30 squares (280 square meters) under the roof (including garage, alfresco, verandah, etc).

Wanting to build with a local builder (local to the Geelong region), and after looking at display homes and taking advice from friends and family, by March we had chosen to build with¬†Barry Walker Homes.¬†They had a range of “rural” designs that were essentially long “ranch” style homes, and the people seemed really genuine. We also felt we would be able to add the extras we wanted, like double glazing, without blowing the budget.