Colour Selections – Round One

I’m still recovering from the marathon that was our colour and electrical selections appointment. What a day!

I’d read enough blogs and Homeone forum threads to know that for a successful, straight forward, stress-free colour appointment preparation was key! With 6 months lead time and plenty of idle time, I had a plan to be as organised and prepared for the day as possible.

  • I visited Studio M many times to window shop Metricon’s range so I had a fairly good idea of the items we’d be upgrading.
  •  I requested a few Display Option List (DOL) to get an idea of costs of the non-standard items you see in the display homes. Based on the prices, I worked out an estimate and set aside a provisional allowance to spend at Studio M.
  •  We had an appointment with the builder’s external kitchen consultant to re-design the kitchen to our personal taste.
  •  I hired an interior designer to help pre-select colour schemes for the house.

So, I felt confident that I had things under control. Well suffice to say the appointment didn’t exactly go as planned. Perhaps I shouldn’t really be surprised given every stage of this admin phase has thrown a curve ball!

The plan came unstuck when selections started on the kitchen and butler’s pantry. As we customised the space, Metricon was provided a supply and install quote by the external kitchen supplier. When we met with the kitchen consultant, we had given him the budget we allocated for the redesign. He assured us that the changes he made would fit within that budget. Imagine our shock when Metricon gave us a lump sum price of roughly $16,000 for our non-standard kitchen and butlers pantry. We were hoping to have the dream kitchen for $10,000 😢

To give some context, here are the elevation drawings of the offending rooms…


Standard Metricon Hudson Kitchen and Pantry


Customised Kitchen and Butler’s Pantry

I don’t think we went overboard with the changes to the main kitchen. I expected the variation to the pantry was going to be the bulk of the extra cost and worked out a guesstimate of the redesign based on Metricon’s DOL.

  • Increased the island from 2696mm x 1020mm to 3000mm x 1200mm – $1,000
  • Increased the caesarstone edge to island only from 20mm to 40mm. The main kitchen bench top to remain standard 20mm. –  $1,000
  • Added a microwave/oven tower – $1,590
  • Added 2 banks of drawers – $1,620
  • Deleted 3 base cupboards Elevation D of the island – (expect a credit)
  • Deleted standard pantry shelves and replaced with a customised butler’s pantry layout including caesarstone bench top and base cupboards – $5,000

I’m well aware of builder’s margin but the price discrepancy seems unreasonable and for the life of me I can’t do the maths! I guess I have to wait for the itemised breakdown from Metricon to work out the extra charges. It’s fair to say, we left the appointment frustrated and disheartened. We now have a huge task of trying to cull the upgrades to get within budget! *Sigh*

12 thoughts on “Colour Selections – Round One

  1. mrscormo says:

    Hi I’m joannek from H1 – found your blog which I’m enjoying. Gee you’re only $6k away from the price you thought but it’s a real downer to hear that that upgrade is so expensive. Could you perhaps delete the caesarstone in the pantry? I just did laminate in mine and I’m happy with it. Or you could get delete the pantry layout and get them to give you a bare room, then get to it after handover? I think you should get the island exactly right as you can’t do that after handover. Hmm

    • Sheilzy @ says:

      Hey joannek, thanks for stopping by 🙂 I’ve been stalking your build and love your stunning home especially your floors, kitchen, bathroom…come to think of it I love all your selections!

      I know $6000 doesn’t sound too bad but what frustrated me was on the day of our colour appt, Metricon couldn’t give us a breakdown of the lump sum price. We’ve decided to do the pantry after handover and not be slugged with the outrageous builders margin. I agree about the island, we’re going to stick to the redesigned layout. Thanks

  2. trixee says:

    You know, months ago I thought I was over-prepared too, but now I’m struggling with decisions!
    It’s a shame about the kitchen quote you got back from the builder. Do you know how much the kitchen supplier charged? If the builder is putting more than his standard margin on top, that might be a bit suss. Alternatively, have you considered deleting the pantry layout from the build altogether and doing it after handover? Or even just some of it, say the overheads?

  3. sydfam says:

    Did you upgrade your Caesarstone category? I’m surprised they did not have a break down of the costs on the day. We’ve also estimated our upgrades and are hoping for no major surprises. What did you decide to do with the powder room laminate?

    By the way, we finally started a blog for our build:
    I have to say I am enjoying writing it all down! Hoping to get some feedback and some guidance for our build.

    Good luck with the cull! It’ll be our turn soon..

    • Sheilzy @ says:

      Studio m quote won’t be ready till hopefully early/mid next week. We raised over 50 items to be priced up, some of which need to be sent off to external suppliers for estimates. We are upgrading the stone in the kitchen to cat 3 and the price they have on the day was $1610. It was very frustrating not to be able to get a breakdown of the cost on the day especially as they had the plans for the redesigned layout weeks ago. So they should have known exactly how much our customised kitchen/butlers pantry would cost. Anyways we have to just wait for the variations to come back and try to get as much in as possible. It will be toast and water for everyone for the next 20 years!

      Re powder room, the husband has put his foot down so will be sticking to out pre-selections ie Laminex White. The only reason why I had a second thought was I wasn’t sure whether I wanted white in the laundry. We want to use the same colours in the ground floor powder room and laundry. I have since seen the light (aka Houzz and Pinterest) and I’m now very much keen on an all-white laundry.

      YAY and welcome to bloggyland! I will pop over your blog after I hit send on this comment. Love me another house build blog especially a Metricon one 🙂

  4. sydfam says:

    If it’s any consolation we included our kitchen upgrades in our tender and it was in excess of $16K. We increased the length of our island to 3m, added an extra waterfall edge and increased the stone to 40mm (left the rest as 20mm). The kitchen cabinets were upgraded to poly, added an extra bank of pot drawers, moved the fridge, included a microwave tower and a butler’s pantry (majority of the costs). We have a sink in our butlers pantry and a water point for our fridge too. Let me know if you want to specific prices.

    We took up the ‘Hot Right Now’ promo and it clearly states that Fisher & Paykel appliances are included. However, in our tender they specified Elba items. We stood our ground and insisted on the Fisher & Paykel products. M finally came around when it came to the crunch.

    Re the powder room, the white cabinets with your walnut stone and tiles will look very nice. As you know we are still deciding on the laminates for our build and I think I will also be matching my powder room cabinets to the laundry too.

    Looking forward to hearing about your Studio M quote!

    • Sheilzy @ says:

      Thanks for sharing your costs Anna. I think it’s cheaper to do the butlers pantry upgrade after handover but I’d really prefer to finish the house as much as possible before we move in. Can you please provide specifics. What did you add in the pantry and how much did it cost? If you prefer, please email to –

      Re FP appliances, I can’t believe M would have even disputed this given you’d clearly taken up the promo. You shouldn’t have needed to stand your ground. That would have peeved me off! Glad you sorted it out.

      Good luck with picking laminates. I found it so difficult hence the decision to hire a professional. If you don’t want to spend the money on designer, have you considered getting some online help? I just stumbled upon a blogger who is also an interior designer and she offers e-design services for a steal – $10 or something ridiculously cheap for colour advice. Let me know if this is of interest.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s