Stone on budget

CA498_TheConservatory_122IMG_0731Lots of our clients love the look of natural stone but are put off by the price. Stone work is extremely labour intensive. It is heavy hard work, an art form and we believe our stonemasons are among some of the best and this is what makes it expensive.
But there is a compromise. The use of Veneered stone had become very popular of the past few years and the range of stone available today is enormous. This will range from traditional Stacked Stone , Ledge stone ,Granite peices and other natural stone pieces. The stone work can be install over existing brickwork and cement sheet products, this makes the installation process relatively easy and therefore far less expensive that traditional stone. We have been using veneered stone on our conservatories , pool houses, pergolas, renovations and extensions and Garden Houses with beautiful results. For more info call our office on 1300 655 659

Best Of Houzz 2015 Design Awards

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Mount Martha , February 23, 2015 Acorn Garden Houses of Mount Martha has been awarded  “Best  of Houzz 2015″ for Design by, the leading platform for home renovation and design. Acorn Garden Houses a Design and Build Company specialising in unique outdoor living structures , Conservatories, Pool houses and Garden rooms was chosen by more than 25 million users that make up the Houzz community ( with over 1 million in Australia). Acorn Garden Houses was selected from among more than 500,000 home professionals worldwide!.

The Best of Houzz awards fall under two categories: ‘Design’ and ‘Customer Satisfaction’. Design awards are granted to home professionals whose work was the most popular among the more than 25 million monthly users on Houzz, affectionately known as ‘Houzzers”.

Winners of the award will receive a ‘Best of Houzz 2015′ badge on their profiles to highlight their talents to the community. The Badge will highlight the award winner’s popularity and satisfaction rating among their peers on Houzz, distinguishing them to Houzzers around the world who discover and love their work.

Jason Chuck, Managing Director of Houzz Australia, says: “It’s great to see Acorn Garden Houses recognised as the Best of Houzz from across Australia and more that 500,000 business worldwide. It’s a genuine tribute to their expertise when the award is judged by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts who are actively building, renovating and decorating their homes.”

“For home owners, Houzz, provides them with everything they need to build, renovate or decorate their homes, connecting them with not only the best home professionals and products from Australia, but also from around the world. Our community in Australia is already over 1 Million and growing every day”


Thanks Houzz

Steve Magliano

Smart Homes Are Getting More Affordable

Home automation used to be the domain of the high end builders market only, but not any more. With the innovation of new technologies and greater competition with suppliers and manufactures demand has never been greater.
The innovation of Smart Phones and Tables now allows for less wiring and hardware. You are able to use smart apps , wireless technology and bluetooth.

The type of automation is endless and gets more exciting every day. Just think, its 40 degrees you are at work, you log onto you home automation close the blinds, turn on the air conditioner , reprogram the watering system, and turn on your favourite music. When you get home the house is cool the plants are watered and you can take the next 30 min to relax unwind with a cool drink while listing to your favourite crooner.

You have left the iron on and also put the alarm on. You can call your neighbour turn off your alarm from your phone unlock the door and lock up when the iron has been turned off.

If you would like more information on home automation just shoot me a email.

Furnish Your Project with Red Fox Runs

IMG_4053We have opened a new home wares and interior design store on the Mornington Peninsula.
Come in and visit Amanda for some great interior styling ideas and see her fantastic range of modern country and eclectic mix of vintage items. There is a nice mix of furniture for H K Living, Dash and Albert rugs from the US, and Children’s bedlinen from Sack Me, just to name a few
Amanda has been in the retail home wares business for over 20 year from Waterford/Wedgwood at the old Georges in Melbourne, Laura Ashly and pioneering the startup of the homeswares department at Country Road South Yarra. Amanda has been doing our interiors at Acorn Garden Houses and Acorn Country Homes for the past 15 Years and is a qualified interior decorator.
We are located at 153 Main Street Mornington. Like us on Face book Red Fox Runs vintage and home

Invest In A Expert

K064_19FlowersSt_002 2Ever wondered why your renovations or new home doesn’t look like the photos in the magazines. This is one of the most asked questions I get.

It’s quite simple, theses shots are put together but experts in their field, and unless you have some expert knowledge, training or a creative conceptual mind it makes it very difficult to achieve the same result.

So, my advice to you is, invest in an Interior designer or Stylist for your current or future project. Most will charge between $110.00 to $150.00 per hour, this may seem like a lot of money but they will look at what you have with a fresh eye and assess your needs and likes, you can usually get them to do a mood board or a colour palate in a day or two, to bring together your vision, your outlay for services may be somewhere between $800.00 to $1000.00, but this drives direction for the build and the colours and finishes to be used.

Armed with just this information you have a great base to start choosing furniture, finishes, floor coverings and window furnishings just to start. It helps with what will work in the space you have, and the feel, tone and textures to be used in the space. It can mean the difference between having to buy new furniture and being able to incorporate your existing pieces and items that you love but aren’t sure how they can work in with your new look.

As a general rule most of our clients will invest about 1% of the value of their build with the interior design team, and we find that they save this amount in time and stress alone.

If you would like more information or some recommendations call our office on 1300 655 659

Funky New Seating Not Just for Kids

RRP Tigeroy-137 sGreat New Seating Idea Just come across these funky new indoor/outdoor beanbags. You can fill them to use them as a fantastic seat in the pool house or use less filling and this makes the perfect lounge chair or pool lilo for just floating around. They can be drip dried via a handy loophole in the end and have a protective inner sealed bag so there are no accidents. Great range of colours from bright yellow to graphite grey will suit all decors This is the perfect piece for any Pool House or outdoor living structure. Available at Red Fox Runs Mornington from The 1st October 2014 Email Amanda at to reserve your favourite colours for Christmas.

Do your homework when choosing your builder.

imgresIt still surprises me when I here about peoples poor experiences with a builder. This generally occurs when a property owner does not do enough research into the builder or building company. It is important that you follow a few easy steps.

1. Check that the builder holds a registration

2. Get referrals from friends, work mates and family who have already used a builder they are happy with.

3. Ask the builder for references. This is not just testimonials but names and phone numbers of past clients.

4. Call past clients and ask them about there experience with the builder.

5. Drive past and see some of his/her finished work .


Some of the do not’s

1 Choose a builder on price. ( If they are substantially cheeper than others ask yourself why?)

2. Choose a builder because of time frames. Good builder are generally alway busy.

3. Choose a builder if you feel uncomfortable with them from the first interview. Building is a long process and you need to be able to talk to and trust your builder.

These maybe little steps but this is one of the biggest financial decisions you will ever make and it is important that if your not prepared to do some of the easy steps ,  you will end up with a poor build and this will end in financial disaster .



Do I need a permit for a deck?

The short answer is most likely.

I have not been surprised by the amount of illegal building works on decks in the past few years. I put this down to a number of factors.

  1. Proliferation of lifestyle TV shows that generally give the viewer the notion that all you need to do to build a deck is run down to you local hardware store buy the materials and build it over a weekend.
  2. Cost of plans, permits, including the use of Registered Builders or tradesman or the application of an owner builders certification.
  3. Town Planning. It is true that most decks do not require a town-planning permit, but for those who live in municipalities with these overlays this can be a long and expensive drawn out affair.
  4. Ignorance. “Its my back yards and its only a deck I will not look into what is required” attitude.

Having said all this what are the rules and what are the consequences for not following them.

A Registered Builder or Building Surveyor, the Building and Planning Departments at your local municipality are all good places to start.  But the general rule of thumb is “ if its structural” (this is you your are putting it on stumps, bearers and joist) it will need a permit. It will not matter if it is 100mm off the ground or 3 meters off the ground.

The NCC (National Construction Code of Australia) and the relevant Australian Standards such as AS1684 Timber framing Code will help in design the deck and what is require to keep it standing.

My Recommendation is do the job once, do it legally and this will save you money and possible legal issues down the line

Call me on 1300 655 659 for any further advice