Day 2 Frame Assembly

Hoping for a crane-trouble free day today. Starting at 8:00 all the ground floor internal walls are in place by 12:00, the steelwork is checked and we are ready to start adding the first floor panels.


First floor panels in place by 15:00. Now they’ve to go around and tie the roof panels into the wall and lock it all together.


The day draws to an end. The first floor is sealed, air tightness membrane tacked down and plates for the walls in place. First floor and roof go on tomorrow.


Day 1 Frame Assembly

Arrived at the site at 7:30 to await the arrival if crane, kit and assembly crew. By 8:30 the first of two trucks was being unloaded.

Truck 1 unloaded and we had the first wall panel in place before a break for coffee at 10:30.

Then the fun began when the crane refused to restart. Two faults with the geriatric crane meant it was 3:00 before we could get going again but at least all the external walls and most of the steelwork was in place by 7:00



Scaffolding being installed on site

The scaffolding is now being installed on site.  Should be ready just-in-time for the arrival of Kingspan on Thursday 11th next.

After a few weeks where not much happened at the site, we are now back in action and the next few weeks promise lots of changes as the frame of the house takes shape.

We went with Assured Access Scaffolding from Ennis for the supply of our …. scaffolding.  Nigel of AAS has been a pleasure to deal with and very good in getting onsite and erecting the scaffolding in time for our frame installation next week.

Terri checks the view
Terri checks the view

Timber Frame due on 11th October

We’ve been given a definite delivery date from Kingspan for the timber frame.

Due on Thursday 11th on site the frame should be assembled by the middle of the following week and the shape and form of the house should be set.

Scaffolding needs to be in place beforehand so we have to pick a supplier today or tomorrow and get it installed.

The pressure is building to get all the other elements lined up including the roof, external finishes etc. as soon as the frame is in place.

The foundations are finished – we are out of the ground

It’s official, the foundations, rising walls, radon and damp proof membrane are in place, the concrete subfloor has been poured and the whole kit & caboodle measured by Kingspan.  The verdict is that Joe McNamara and his colleagues have done a great job and the reality almost perfectly matches the drawings supplied by Kingspan and any minor changes were easily accommodated.

We’ve tweaked the drawings, amended a few walls and doors and windows and signed-off on the drawings.  Once the money is in the Kingspan account they’ll commence manufacture in Monaghan of the Ultima wall system for our house.

Not much will happen onsite for the next few weeks while we await the arrival of the kit.  Just time to arrange all the follow-on services for the windows, roof, plumbing, electrics, external and internal rendering, floors etc. etc. etc.

Day 22 Siteworks

Here’s a video of the construction taken with a timelapse camera

Siteworks begin with Joe McNamara

After lots of discussions with a number of contractors we have selected Joe McNamara Plant Hire and Contractor.  He is providing us with all our groundworks and foundations plus the rainwater and sewage treatments systems and external pipework for the house.

Joe started work on the 23rd August and cleared the topsoil, levelled the site and marked out the foundations in a few days.

We’ve found him to be easy to work with, conscientious and reliable.  Looking forward to getting the foundation walls finished in the coming days so we can get Kingspan to come an measure up for the timber frame.

Joe’s not got a website (yet) so you’ll have to look at the photos here to see his work.

We’ve gone for a Panel Wall System from Kingspan Century

After looking at a range of construction options we settled on a timber frame wall system using factory-assembled panels. These Structured Insulated Panels come with door & window openings already in place, insulation inside and are bolted onto the foundations.

The whole house frame is assembled on site in less than a week helping to speed the build to completion. There are several other advantages to the SIP system including very precise and accurate construction, high insulation values, high airtightness and slim wall profiles.

We chose the Kingspan Century Ultima wall system after much deliberation. There are a small number of Irish suppliers of SIP systems and all offer a good product but the Kingspan package won on a combination of cost and features in the overall package.

The Ultima Wall SIP system combines an insulated timber panel with airtightness membrane and high performance insulation on the inner face and a battened service cavity which is enclosed in plasterboard after all the trades have done their pipe work and wiring.

For more information on the Ultima wall system click here :



Mortgage Approved – the project begins now

We are ecstatic with the news that our mortgage application has been approved by the Bank of Ireland.  We’ve to sign lots of paperwork, submit forms and such-like but it means we can finally get down to signing contracts and getting the whole build process underway.

I’d like to acknowledge the support of the mortgage team in Bank of Ireland, 125 O’Connell Street in Limerick and in particular Daryl & Gerry who were most supportive of our application and provided valuable feedback to allow us to make a comprehensive application.

I know the whole property market is in turmoil at present but the belief and support for our project has been encouraging and it shows that there is some mortgage lending going on in the market, at least to us anyway, so we cannot complain!!

Thank you Bank of Ireland .. Here we go!

Mortgage Application Submitted

So the final application and all the paperwork has been submitted to the Bank for the Mortgage.  We took time to put together as comprehensive an application as possible with lots of supporting documentation to back it up.

We can do no more but sit and wait for a few days to see what the decision will be.

Fingers crossed.

Pricing the Build of the House

We have been getting quotes for all the elements of the house and preparing a Bill of Quantities which we are using the work out the total build cost.

We have piles of brochures and materials from suppliers, an email inbox full of correspondences and spreadsheets of various types to gather the costs together.

There are so many elements to consider from the groundworks, foundations, walls and windows, roof, wastewater, heating, ventilation, plumbing, white goods, carpentry etc.

Finally we are approaching the end of the process, we have several quotes for most of the key elements of the build and a fair idea of the total build costs.  Now we have to put together the paperwork for the Mortgage Application.