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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Subdivision Progress: Tree Removal, Lifting Pavers + Excavating

We've been making slow and steady progress getting our backyard cleared and ready for subdivision these last few months. 

It's hard to believe we got approval to subdivide almost a year ago now. This year has just gone so fast with our engagement and planning the wedding taking priority that although we thought we would have it finished by now and put on the market to sell, it isn't quite ready yet but we are aiming to get it finished early in the New Year.

The granny flat we had removed in September and was a massive milestone in getting the block cleared. The granny flat was taken away by the transport guys to try to sell, I'm not sure if they have sold it yet but I hope it goes to someone to turn into their home!

In October we had the large ghost gum tree removed from the backyard by tree loppers. 

There were 4 guys working on removing it and it took them about 5 hours to cut down from the top branches all the way down the tree trunk. They had their trucks and heavy duty equipment onsite and turned it all into mulch and took it away.

The stump was left in so that the bobcat guys can remove it roots and all. Tree removal is expensive we paid almost $2,000 for it to be removed.


We also wanted to save our patio pavers that we didn't need anymore but didn't want them to end up in the skip bin so we gave them to a friend who plans to extend her patio area.

So one hot and sunny Sunday, four of us moved 400 pavers .... lifted them up from our old patio area, stacked them in the ute, drove them to our friends house, unloaded them and stacked them again. It took 4 trips to get them all moved as we could only fit about 100 pavers in the ute at a time.

It was exhausting work on a hot summer day but the drinks afterwards tasted even better when you know you've earnt it!

Over the last three Saturdays we had a mini excavator and driver in to clear the rest of the backyard - take out the concrete supports from the granny flat, knock out the brick garden beds, concrete retaining wall around the patio area, and remove all the old building rubble and materials.

The excavator put everything into piles and then a bobcat came in and scooped everything up and dumped it straight into his truck. When the truck was full, the bobcat driver took the truck and dropped off the load and then came back to fill it up again.

If the backyard wasn't a dusty sandpit before it sure is now!

When there's machinery digging around you need to be careful of your services so you don't disturb pipes. We had drawings of where our plumbing pipes were meant to be in the backyard but they were wrong as we found out when the excavator accidentally pulled up our sewer pipe ... now I know where the term shit happens comes from!

A cracked pipe, a call to our plumber, and a quick trip to the hardware store for supplies and Mr P fixed it using a new pipe and repair couplings which have rubber rings and hinges to clamp around the new pipe which makes it much stronger and secure for underground plumbing.

Problem solved in about an hour and we could safely flush the toilet again!

Mr P got busy separating all the timber and plastic from the brick and building rubble so that the truck could take it to the rubbish tip - they will only accept brick and building rubble there. If there's timber and plastic in there as well they process as a different type of rubbish which is more expensive.

It worked out cheaper for us to get a bobcat in to load it into a truck, which did a few trips to the yard to dump the rubble.

Our local council supplies us with a few skip bins a year so we loaded all the timber and plastic into the skip bin for it to be removed at no cost - winning!

The backyard has been cleared and the next job is to remove the large underground concrete tanks (the old septic tanks which were decommissioned but not removed from the ground).

We also need to have a plumber in to move our drainage pipes.

Then we will get the surveyor in to peg out the back block and advise us on what level the land needs to be so we know how much retaining we'll need - retaining walls and fences can then be installed.

Then we can design our deck - I can't wait for the deck to be built it's been a dream for so many years now!

We are getting there slowly but surely!

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  1. So much work that has been done and to be done! It looks like a construction site for sure! I bet you can't wait to have that deck, it'll be worth all the work!


    1. Yes but we feel like we're over half way done which is great, just have to live with a backyard sandpit for a little while longer. I dream about the deck all the time can't wait to sit out there with a glass of wine and watch the sunset!

  2. What great foresight you had to see where this was going. Not always the easiest to have. We have 10 palm tress to be rid of before we can extend the back of our house and add a pool, it's going to be an expensive job! Thanks for linking up with #HIT

    1. It's taken a lot of imagination to get where we are but we can see the light at the end of the tunnel now :)
      Oh yes tree removal is so expensive but will be well worth it when you can have a dip in your pool, sounds awesome!

  3. I can't believe how much it costs to remove a large tree! Holy heck. Your bobcat isn't the first to excavate a sewer line. We've done it before when dial before you dig didn't reveal the services in the first place. Thanks so much for linking up.

    1. Yes it's a cost that you don't expect to be so high!
      We were going by old hand drawn plans that we had of where the sewer line was meant to be but the plan had been drawn wrong! Nevermind we sorted it in the end :)


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