Engineers report

I would like to knock a couple of walls out in my unit to open up the living area. Apparently I need to give the body corporate an application including an engineers report on the structual integrity of the rebovation.
Can someone recommmend anybody and roughly how much will such a report cost?

Hi James,

Probably best to speak to you local council to get a few names of structual engineers that they have worked with, but be sure NOT to give your name or property address.

Maybe it's just me...but I don't feel the need to tell a council of any plans before they are well thought out.


But, these are the people you will be dealing with on the long term basis, and its a great opportunity when its all just a pipe dream, to introduce yourself and build some rapport.

I have dealt with many and diverse government departments along the way, and without exception have found the people professional, helpful, cheerful, supportive and pro-active.

Maybe its just me?

But I don't think so. I think that most people who deal with the public day in, day out, are chosen for their personalities and are able to give good service in their chosen profession.

On a practical level, before you get anywhere near an engineer, draftsman or surveyor, all of whom will charge you at full fees even for a preliminary conversation, you can lean on the Council counter and get all the information for free!

Then, when you are confident that you CAN do something, go ahead and spend the money when you have decided that you WILL do something.

Works for me!


G'day James Francis

Nah. I'm one of those nasty property developers, studying hard to be Betty the Builder

But - I'm also a licensed Estate Agent

And - I served a full three year term as a Municipal Councillor (in my youth)

And - I've had a couple of businesses previously, one of which was subject to intense govt regulation

And - I've been known to have the occasional investment property

And - I've always tried to follow Abraham Lincoln's advice

'You will attract more flies with a teaspoon of honey, than you will with a gallon of gall'.

But mainly, I actually like people 'cos I'm a people, too, and everybody's just out there trying to put food on their family (sorry, George)

And - I'd hate to see anyone who was just trying to do their best, get sued or fined 'cos no-body gave them the right advice at the right time

But - more importantly, you only get sued if someone gets hurt, and what seems like a good idea (removing walls, installing walls, just putting a little roof on something) could lead to tragedy (not to mention the insurance company declining the claim) if not done properly and legally in the first place.

I've just been to the local Council today, to pay advertising on a development, and not only were the admin staff happy to see me (well, they showed me their teeth), but I called in to a signwriter on the way back to organise a bill board for the front fence of the property.

The bill board will describe the application, have a large plan of the property on it, and invite people to call me if they have any queries. This is in addition to the advertising schedule supplied by the Council and which I have to sign an affadavit to declare it has been displayed on the property for fourteen days.

So, everybody occupies a different reality. Our perceptions of the world are not the same. I just happen to think that most people are happy Vegemites (occasionally I've been wrong) and when approached in a calm and happy manner will go out of their way to be helpful, friendly, professional and supportive.

PS the French Colonial 2100 x 2700 lounge/patio windows and Bedroom 2100 x 1800 windows were installed at Myrtle Cottage today. Only two more to go and this honest little post-war bungalow will have completely new Trend windows, 19 new Corinthian doors, all brass Gainsborough handles, new bathroom, kitchen, garage doors etc etc. I have decided that it really is possible to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

If everybody has as much fun renovating as I do, we will make the Seven Dwarfs look seriously depressed!!


Hi James,

To answer your original question; Provided you give the engineer a full set of plans it should cost you approx. $120 to $200, depending on how tame s/he is.

The engineer will mark the existing palns (saves you dollars!).