Building Your Home on a Sloping Block
Building on a sloping block can be difficult for the builder, but not impossible.
Sometimes the block is in a great location, the view is exactly what you’re after, and the price is within your budget. This can make a sloping block desirable to many clients.
We speak to Jay Pozar from Stroud Homes Sunshine Coast to define what a sloping block is, what sort of slope gradient is acceptable for a slab on ground, and at what point does a sloping block get too expensive.
“With Stroud Homes’ Fully Loaded Inclusions, we allow for the fall to be anywhere up to 1m across the building pad,” says Jay.
“When the fall is up to 2m, we cut 1m and fill 1m to provide a flat building pad, which is acceptable in most cases, however, this does add on some costs,”
“When the fall is more than 2m, it depends on the area Stroud Homes is building on, as some areas allow for excessive cutting all the way up to 4m, but in certain areas you need to ask for a relaxation.”
Cutting doesn’t only depend on the slope, but also the soil composure and presence of rock. When the team does an upscale cut/fill, the foundation requires additional piering on the fill side of the building pad.
“We usually aim for slab on ground, but if this is not possible, we would need to look at alternatives such as a split-level home or stilts, which can add costs to your build quite significantly.”
A deciding factor in building on a sloping block is whether it’s sloping up or down from the road.
With the blocks sloping up, Stroud Homes Sunshine Coast usually needs to do split level, and is quite limited in terms of standard designs which makes it expensive by itself.
“Very often we use a cost-effective method of putting a home on two slabs, which have different elevations and the middle area is on stilts,” explains Jay.
Stroud Homes Sunshine Coast has a design for this type of slopes called Clare, which looks like a two storey home from the front, but in reality only has a garage, media and laundry on the ground floor, all the rest is on the second floor which is part second story and part on slab, which is set higher on a slope.
When the slope is sloping down from the road, Stroud Homes Sunshine Coast can build almost any standard design, but it will be fully on stilts. If possible, the team always tries to put at least the garage on slab.
“Rule of thumb is that we need to add $50,000 to a standard home pricing if we are building on a steep slope, but this really depends on the number of stairs incorporated in the design and the size of the deck, which needs balustrading if sloping down,” says Jay.
Rainfall is also a big factor to consider ensuring all proper drainage and storm water ways are installed correctly to suit the block.
Stroud Homes Sunshine Coast does have a few designs available to be able to use sloping blocks. However, the team can draft up other designs if the client is wanting to build that design. As well as the Clare, these Stroud Homes designs include, the Avoca, Wildflower and Miami: