Knock Down rebuild on narrow blocks

by | May 17, 2024 | Knockdown rebuild, Knockdown rebuild guide

With land in high demand, narrow blocks are becoming more common, especially in inner-city areas. As a result, if you want to perform a knock down rebuild in an inner-city suburb, there is a fair chance you’ll end up purchasing a narrow lot. The question we’re answering today is whether there are any unique challenges or considerations that may come up when performing a knock down rebuild on a narrow block. Let’s take a look at both the demolition and building process for a knock down rebuild on a narrow block.

Planning & design challenges of a knockdown rebuild on a narrow block

Both the knockdown and rebuild parts of the knockdown rebuild process will be affected by a narrow lot. Let’s begin by taking a look at how a smaller lot might impact a demolition. Narrow lots are often next to other narrow lots, either in a master-planned community or even in a regular suburb.

You’ll also need to remember you have limited space for the foundation of your home, so during the design phase you may need to consider a two storey home design if you’re after more space. There’s plenty you can achieve on even the smallest lot of land. You just need to have a plan!

Find out more about site inspection and preparation with these handy articles.

What are the different regulatory and zoning considerations on knockdown rebuild on a narrow block?

Different areas will have specific regulatory and zoning guidelines. Depending on the project you may need a zoning certificate, development approval and permits before you can proceed. Therefore, it’s always worth checking with your local council before going ahead with any major construction project (including a knockdown rebuild). If your existing property is an older home, you’ll also need to make sure it isn’t heritage-listed.

What is the demolition process of a knock down rebuild on a narrow block?

Site Preparation

It might not be the most exciting part of the build, but performing soil tests and topographical surveys can provide essential information for your build. Both give an idea of your soil quality and can flag any potential issues. As tempting as it may be to hope for the best, discovering an issue during construction is more troublesome (and expensive) than knowing about it beforehand. When your contractors know about an issue ahead of time, they can plan, whereas adapting mid-build is more complex for them and more expensive for you!

Figure of the scope of the project

When pitching a project to contractors, it helps if you know what you want. While this may sound obvious, you’d be surprised at how vague some clients can be about their projects, and these communication problems can lead to issues down the track. Understanding what you want, ideal timelines and any essentials will help you get across to any potential demolition company exactly what you want.

Finding and hiring a contractor

As with any contractor, it’s best to talk to several demolition companies and get a quote from each. Talking to several knock-down rebuild specialists will help you get an idea of what is out there and will hopefully help you get a better deal. Building on the last tip, be sure to ask any potential hire whether they’ve ever worked on a project similar to yours.

Site inspection and preparation

Your demolition contractor will likely want to inspect the property and the home they’re going to knock down to help plan. Many companies offer free site inspection as part of their free quote service

Depending on when your home was built, there is a chance it may contain hazardous materials that need to be removed before demolition commences. The big one to be aware of is asbestos. Unfortunately, asbestos was a very common material to use for insulation, tiling, pipes and other parts of the home right up until the 90s. If you have any asbestos, you’ll need to have it professionally removed before you can knock down and rebuild. It’s a topic big enough to warrant its own article, so that’s exactly what we’ve done. Find a link below.

Disconnect power

Before you can knock down the current home, you’ll need to organise the disconnection of any power currently connected to the property.

Demolishing the house.

It’s the big moment: you finally get to knock down the current house. The design of the existing house and the location will influence how long this will take. Most demolitions

Demolition costs usually come in around $5,000-$20,000, depending on the existing dwelling.

Remove building materials, rubbish and debris.

Once your house has been knocked down, the debris will need to be removed and disposed of. You have a few options including skip bin, hiring waste removal companies or the demolition company may have some suggestions.

Begin building your new house

Now the existing home has been removed, you can commence construction on your new family home. This is a big enough step that we’ve written articles about the entire process. Check out any of the links below to find out more about the construction process or the knock-down rebuild process.

How much does a knockdown rebuild project cost on a narrow block?

Knocking down a house can cost anywhere between $12,000-$40,000+, but this can vary depending on a variety of factors. Anything that makes the job easier will likely make the job more affordable, while anything that adds complications will be added to your final bill. If you need to remove any trees,

The price of narrow home designs can also vary a lot. Whether you decide to build a single or double-storey home, have a minimal design or a luxury home with all the features, it’ll make a difference to the final price.

What are some common issues we have seen with knock-down rebuild projects on narrow blocks & how to avoid them?

Smaller land area: Your home design will have to take into account that you have a smaller lot of land to work with. If you want five bedrooms, extra space for a growing family or just extra space.

Tighter space to work with: The demolition company has less space to work with, which may complicate the build.

Closer to neighbourhoods: If you’re knocking down your home, it’s highly recommended you inform your neighbours of when the demolition will be taking place.

Our tips for knock down rebuild projects on narrow blocks

  • Talk to multiple demolition companies and ask about their experience with knockdown rebuilds.
  • Sort out your finances and budget before you begin your project. Money is the biggest speedbump people run into when people are building new homes. We cannot overemphasise how helpful it is to have a realistic budget and stick to it throughout your build.
  • When talking to builders, ask if they’re a knockdown rebuild specialist

Buildi is here to help with your next knock down rebuild project

Whether you’re performing a knock down rebuild on a narrow block or not, Buildi is here to help with your next build. We can help with a family home, an investment property or anything in between. We can find a home builder and guide you through all the stages of the building process. We’ll help you talk to your site supervisor, contractors and builder to ensure you get everything promised in your building agreement. Why not get in touch to see how we can help with your next home building project?

Book your free, impartial consultation today!


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Building a Home

Knockdown Rebuild

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Building a Home

Knockdown Rebuild

Home designs

Advice & inspiration