rental property repairs adelaide

Rental Property Nightmares

Self-managed rental properties across Adelaide can be some of the worst looked after by the tenants. Unfortunately, if a homeowner lives interstate or far away from the property it can be hard to always check on the property and if the rent gets paid each week majority of landlords are led to believe everything is ok! Unfortunately, this is not always the case as we have found out over the years performing maintenance and building repairs to various residential and commercially tenanted buildings.

Insurance For Rental Property Problems

Its not until the landlord gets a phone call from the South Australian Police that all is discovered and it’s where the nightmare starts to unravel itself! As a preferred insurance builder across Adelaide and in the Adelaide Hills, we come across many scenarios like I have just described above and each one leaves the owners in a sad situation. The results can be truly disastrous and very depressing, finding a place to start over is a challenge, but if you contact the right insurance builder such as Mayfair Building Group the process will feel seamless and move in a fast pace enabling the quickest result possible, a reputation we have built upon over the years. If it’s illegal it’s going to be a headache.

Significant Repairs

The majority of the time we get involved with an insurance job which requires significant repairs is because something illegal has been going on inside the building and depending on the length of time it can be a real eye opener. Typically, it will be related to some form of drug business, whether it be growing of marijuana or creating drugs using chemicals such as ice. The entire home or building is recreated and made into a manufacturing plant for illegal purposes. Unfortunately, the alterations performed are then left to the homeowner to take care of once the operation is ceased by the police (as seen in images on this page from a recent marijuana raid where all the rooms where converted into grow rooms).


drug lab setup in rental house

Repairs & Maintenance Tasks That May Be Required

What are the likely tasks needed to be performed to make good? When it comes to making a building good again there are numerous tasks which need to be performed, but in general they will be as follows:

  • Complete testing of electrical wiring and switch boards as these always get altered to allow for significant power distribution inside the home. The switchboard and its circuit breakers all need to be inspected by a licensed electrician and any necessary repairs performed to make it all safe again. This can also involve the isolation of the power to the property temporarily by SA Power Networks. There can in some cases also be security cameras installed and these will also need to removed along with the wiring associated to these appliances and any kind of monitoring devices and screens.


fuse box repair


  • CCTV Camera Investigations of all drains to identify whether there has been any damage caused from the chemicals going into the drains. This can then lead to hydro jet cleaning and further repair work to the sewer pipes whether they are pvc or earthenware. Occasionally we find objects such as syringes and small tools stuck around the S trap of sinks which needs careful removal.
  • Certification of Backflow Prevention Devices on the property to ensure the potable water being delivered to premises is still ok and in tacked. Because of the high level of chemicals being used during these processes its important to check that all backflow prevention valves are still ok and meeting the manufacturers specifications. If there is a failing device a registered plumber who can certify backflow valves will need to used and perform the relevant repairs and tests.
  • Gyprock patching and repairs is almost a given due to the holes put in walls to hang items and then the removal of items stuck to the walls the gyprock will need repairing. In some cases, due to high levels of moisture content in the rooms the wall and ceiling linings may need complete removal and reinstated again in order to get a good result, this would also include any new insulation materials (external walls and ceilings typically).


rental property repairs adelaide


  • 100% the building will need a full repaint internally. Once all repairs are done to walls, door frames, windows and ceilings we would typically come in and spray paint the entire internals. Every situation is different but if all the rooms are the same colour before any floor coverings go down, we would have everything sprayed. The advantage of this is that it is fast and allows a project to move quickly.
  • Floor coverings are another given these will either be completely ripped up to allow flood modifications or have been ruined due to chemicals etc having been dropped onto them. If the floor has been modified for ventilation purposes, then there will need to be some carpentry works. Depending on the alterations some structural components may need to be repaired or it may just be non-structural repairs. Once these areas have been addressed then the new carpet or floating floors can be reinstalled.

Each building insurance job we perform in Adelaide is always unique in one way or another and certainly it’s not always covered by the owner’s insurance. Some of the tasks needed to be done may not be covered by the policy or in the worst case the owner may not have insurance leaving all the costs for them to have to pay out of their own bank accounts.

At Mayfair Building Group we pride ourselves on speedy turn arounds with high end finishes. When a scenario such as these arise at a property, the owners want the repairs done fast as they are losing money each week there is no tenants in the building. What sets us apart from our competitors is our prompt approach to assessing the insurance building repairs, submitting our findings and recommendations and then once approved getting the job started. Find out for yourself today why we are a preferred insurance builder in Adelaide.

renovation of a beach side home in Glenelg

A Coastal Renovation That’s All About The View

When you hear real estate agents talking about a properties worth, they will often reference the location if it has any bearing on the value, well this up coming project is all about the location.  Situated in the heart of Glenelg this two-storey home is everything about the view and more.

We have recently been given the go ahead from the owners to now start work on their rejuvenation of there two storey property which couldn’t be any closer to the beach if you wanted it to be.  The owners are keen to see the works started and completed for summer which is approximately 4 months away so they can enjoy their home over the warmer months and show it off to the relatives who will be visiting from Canada for Christmas.

Renovation Close To The Beach

As I briefly touched on in the previous paragraph the property is very close to the beach and history tells us that anything close to coastal environments will come under strain from salt, moisture, sand and wind.  There are specific building methods which should be applied according the NCC which assist in protecting these buildings but after time everything needs some renovating.

The agenda for this project is to make everything open and shut properly again along with a complete freshen up of internal rooms and external finishes.

Swollen And Rotted Timbers

Timber balustrades, window frames and door frames are ok to be installed by the beach but there are better products that can be used which will last longer and perform better.  Probably the biggest task on this project will be the removal of the timber balustrades for the balcony and replacement with 316 stainless steel.  The windows are being removed and replaced with double glazed glass accompanied by aluminium frames.  The old wooden doors and frames will also be removed and replaced with aluminium frames and doors.  The doors will have decorative glass inserts frosted for privacy but still allow some natural light into the entrance hallway.


Due to the disruption to the balcony with the new balustrades the old tiled floor will be lifted and replaced.  There will be new screed installed along with non-slip tiles.  There will be a new non slip heel guard strip drain installed from ACO.  This manufacturer typically supplies to the commercial sector due to there high quality and it will ideally suit this situation given the high level of corrosion in this zone.

Down Pipes

Surprisingly the gutters are in good condition which would probably be due to the fact they get washed when ever it rains.  The down pipes at the lower level close to the ground have taken a beating.  These will be removed and replaced with new 90mm pvc pipes which eventually get painted.  The brackets will also be replaced with hot dip galvanised brackets to provide etc corrosion resistance.

Rendering And Painting

With the removal of the window frames and door frames there will be some rectification works required to have the new frames match the existing building.  Once the frames are installed, we will render around them and have locked into place and made weather tight.  Painting the entire external of the building is part of the scope of work and will get done once all maintenance is performed to the external of the home.  The internal of the home will also be given a fresh coat of paint from Dulux.


In order to give the bathrooms, laundry and kitchen a feeling of being freshened up there will range of tasks performed.  All tapware will be swapped out with new chrome tapware from Caroma.  There will be new toilet suites supplied and installed by Villeroy and Boch (total of 4).  The kitchen will get a new dishwasher from Smeg along with a 900mm Smeg gas cook top and Electric fan assisted oven.


new toilet installation

smeg gas cooker bench top installation

Floor Coverings

Carpet and the beach are not the ideal match.  The sand and the water tend to get engrained into the carpet and make it hard to get clean and it looks dirty fast.  The rooms which are currently carpeted will be replaced with floating floorboards.  There will be one exception to this and that will be the stairs.  The stairs will remain carpeted except it will be new carpet.


floor renovation in Glenelg Beach

Owning a property this close to the beach at Glenelg you will never loose money when renovating.  The gain in property value for these clients will be huge.  The appeal from the beach and inside will resemble a fully renovated home and if they were ever to sell the house it will put them in a fantastic place to get the best price at the time.

At Mayfair Building Group we take pride in offering our clients high end finishes with schedules and budgets that are always met.  We offer the Monopoly on excellence.

heritage power points

The St Peters Transformation

A fantastic start to the new financial year with the recent signing of contracts for a small facelift to an original sandstone home in the heart of St Peters.  A location tightly held by homeowners with its location perfectly placed being so close to the City and the shopping precinct of Norwood.  St Peters is home to some of Adelaide’s oldest houses and some of the states highest regarded private schools.

Like many of our projects no one is ever the same and each of our clients have a unique list of priorities for what they want performed around their homes.  In this up and coming project majority of the work will be cosmetic, but it will make this home unrecognisable internally when completed.

Maximum Impact With Minimum Spend

Unfortunately, this St Peters property hasn’t undergone much if any home improvements during its 80 plus years of life so now is the time to finally gives this beautiful property some TLC.  The goal for our clients was to achieve the most impact from there budget.  Below is a list of what we will be doing in order to get the best ROI.

Floor Coverings

Like nearly every old home around Adelaide they were built with floorboards rather than concrete slabs and then the owners opted to have carpet laid over the top.  This property is no exception and the owners want the carpet’s removed and the original jarrah hard wood boards sanded and polished, the transformation will be mind blowing.  There will be a total of six rooms getting polished including a huge grand central hallway approximately 2 metres in width.

floor coverings

Door And Window Hardware

Old houses are notorious for moving with age and items such as doors and windows which rely upon straight and level angles begin to squeak and not operate correctly as the building becomes misaligned over many years.  The windows have sash cord and weights in the external wall cavities which will be replaced with new sash cord and adjustments to weights to ensure correct balances.  The window hardware and door hardware will all be replaced with new antique style fittings to maintain the look of the building and character of the home.

sash cord replacements

Lead Lighting

Entrance doors to the property which there is 3 of these all have amazing lead lighting inserted into them.  Some of the glass pieces have cracked and others fallen out.  The glass panes will each be carefully removed and taken off site to be repaired. During this process temporary boards will be installed to maintain security at the home.  Once completed the new lead lighting panes will be installed and secured tightly to give many more years of vibrant entrances to the home.

lead light door fixtures

Electrical Light Switched And Power Points

Fortunately, at some stage approximately 20 years ago the property had undergone a full rewire of all electrical cables including a switch board upgrade.  The owners would now like the old Clipsal 200 series switches and power points replaced with antique heritage style looking hardware to compliment the home.  This upgrade will cover all power outlets, light switches and dimmers.

heritage power points

Internal Painting

I can’t recall a renovation we have undertaken where some form of painting wasn’t performed, and this will be no exception.  All internal surfaces will undergo a full repaint.  The doors, windows, architraves, cornices, window frames and ceilings are all getting a brand-new lease on life with neutral colourings which will bring ever room back from the dull yellow and apricot colours currently displayed.

A project such as this can be performed while the owner has occupancy but is more fluent when we have full site access.  With careful planning we have scheduled this project to take place while our client goes overseas for 6 weeks to escape the cold Adelaide winter and experience some European summer weather.  Although this project will not take 6 weeks it will mean the customer will come home to a transformed home.  We will begin by having a shipping container delivered to site to enable all furniture to be removed and stored at site and then reinstalled after a final clean at the end of the project.


kitchen counter top installation

Rose Park Reno Project – Bathroom & Kitchen Renovations

Building renovations are a fantastic way to add value to your existing home.  In locations such as Dulwich, Toorak Gardens and Rose Park the properties are significantly old and performing a non-structural home renovation can be a great way to improve a home’s value while still maintaining the beauty of these 100-year-old properties.

We have recently started a home renovation project which is in Rose Park located in Adelaide’s eastern suburbs.  Our customer has engaged our building services to perform the following tasks around the property just off Alexandra Avenue.

Rose Park, AdelaideBathroom Renovation

The existing bathroom has not had much attention now for around 30 years when it was renovated in the early 80’s.  With the huge change in market trends for bathrooms today this room will take on a whole new lease of life.  There will be a dual shower with frameless glass.  The glass will be frosted halfway up to still maintain a certain level of privacy and the floor will drain into a stainless-steel strip drain system.  There will be a double vanity unit installed off the ground and wall mounted, a wall hung toilet which will have a in wall Grohe cistern will complement the wall hung vanity in the room.  The walls will be completely tiled, and the floor will incorporate hydronic under floor heating which will be accompanied by a dedicated natural gas continuous flow water heater mounted externally.  All the tapware in the room will be Hansa mixer taps installed with water saving devices.

rapig hung wall installation

Re-Plastering Internal Walls

Like many of the older homes we renovate they have cracking internally which eventually makes the plaster fall off.  As part of this project we will be removing large sections of the walls plastering and have it reinstated.  Once the plaster has been installed and allowed to dry out our painters will re paint the entire rooms including new ceiling paint.

New Front Fence

If you are familiar with Rose Park you will see that many of the homes have low fences which provide security but still show these majestic houses.  At this home it only ever had a small steel mesh fence installed which has never done the home justice.  We will now have this old fence removed and new wooden post and rail style fence installed with intercom for communication inside whenever guests arrive.

Repairs to Gutters And Fascia Boards

Wood rot along fascia boards is common in older properties.  Many of the fascia boards are original and are about due for replacement in older homes.  At this property there are two long boards which run down the sides of the home and need some urgent repairs.  The half round gutters which are attached are only just hanging on.  Once the old gutters are removed the fascia can then be removed.  New pre painted fascia’s will be installed along with new colour bond half round guttering and round 90mm colour bond down pipes connecting to the existing storm water system onsite.

gutter replacement and repair Adelaide

Kitchen Renovation

Certain to be one of the main focal points of this exciting renovation.  The kitchen will feature huge marble bench tops, Hansa mixer tap, Miele appliances (gas cook top and electric ovens), integrated Miele dishwasher, Blum soft close draws, Franke double bowl sinks and bespoke glass back splash.  The kitchen will be a standout for this home improvement and certainly will add huge ROI when completed.

Be certain to check back with in the coming months to see the amazing progress and not to mention the result when fully completed.

kitchen counter top installation

toilet installation Adelaide

How To Select A Toilet When Renovating In Adelaide

Looking back at the bathroom industry around 20 years ago toilets where pretty basic.  You had a cistern which was mounted to the wall around waist height and a bowl which was concreted to the floor.  All the pipes where on show such as the water inlet piping and the flush pipe along with the s bend coming out of the toilet where there for everyone to see but they were all the same, so it was just the norm.  Turn the clock forward 20 years and things have changed in a huge way, there are no blue and pink toilets, and nothing is on show!

different toilet types

Adapting To Change

As a preferred choice for bathroom renovations Adelaide we are always keeping up with the trends and educating our clients on what the requirements will be in order to achieve that bespoke look at the end of there renovation.  What are some of the important factors to consider when renovating a bathroom and choosing a new toilet?

Water Inlet To The Cistern

If you have an exposed cistern which is mounted to the top of the toilet suite (majority of renovations) then there will be two options.  The water inlet can be exposed and enter to the side of the toilet at approximately 350mm off centre (left or right) and 200mm off finished floor level.  The second option would be to have the water point concealed which would then mean it would enter via the back of the cistern at approximately 150mm off centre to the left and at approximately 750mm off finished floor level.

If, however you have a in wall toilet cistern then the water control valve can be mounted in a ceiling space or external to the building as access to these is limited due to the fact, there is only a small flushing plate left exposed once finished.  There is one final option which is not very common, and it is that of a solenoid flushing valve.  This style of set up will have a dedicated access plate for future servicing and isolation of the water (either in a ceiling manhole or service duct) typically in a commercial set up such as pubs and office blocks to avoid vandalism.

how to choose the best toilet

Position Of Sewer Pipe

With the growing need for more space in smaller bathrooms manufacturers have started making their toilets suites more compact.  With these changes it has meant that the sewer pipe is required to be far more accurate in its location of installation.

As a guide the 100mm sewer drain if entering via the wall should be 180mm off finished floor level to the centre of the pipe and if the pipe is coming through the floor then approximately 150mm to 200mm to centre off the back wall which the toilet suite will eventually be resting against.  Given that most of the toilets on the market today are bolted together when installed to form one piece there is very little tolerance when it comes to getting the sewer pipe set up.

Careful Consideration

Once these two vital pieces of information can be achieved it will then allow you to have a wide range of choice when selecting your new toilet.  Toilets can range from $300 all the way well into the thousands of dollars.  It is very important that the two above factors are carefully considered because with out a well planned out set out you will not get the result you had hoped for.  If you are thinking of renovating or perhaps need a few tips on what the best toilet for your home or business feel free to have a chat with our friendly team at Mayfair Building Group – Adelaide’s preferred choice for bathroom renovating.




Creating Open Plan Living In Your Home

The growing trend we are finding today is to create a more open plan style of living.  Of course, with any new build or extension we perform it’s easy as the plan and design is specified to create this feeling.  It is with existing properties which we renovate internally that the challenges can be a bit more demanding.  The reason for this is that the initial concept was created to distribute loads from the roof onto walls and footings below (hence the term commonly thrown around “load bearing wall”), but where there is a will there is a way!

renovating for open plan living

Home Renovation Considerations

When a customer approaches us to renovate a property for them and one of the items on the to do list is to remove an internal wall or make an existing opening wider there are typically two options:

Option 1:  When a larger opening is desired such as removing an internal dividing wall an LVL beam is installed inside the ceiling space.  The function of this large wooden beam is to pick up any load bearing members inside the roof space and have the existing loads then transferred through to other load bearing walls further apart.  By doing this it then allows the wall below to then be removed as it is no longer serving their purpose of holding a weight from above.

Option 2:  Creating a door way or window opening is not as involved as removing a load bearing wall.  When we are performing a task such as this an item called a lintel will be installed (in brick walls).  A section of the mortar between the bricks above the opening will be removed either side of the opening and this piece of steel will then be inserted to hold the load of the remaining courses of bricks in place above the new opening.  This method can be used for doors, entrance arches and window openings.

Open Plan Living

Creating an open space certainly does give an overall feeling of togetherness it allows for families to all be together at once no matter if someone may in the kitchen, lounge room or dining room they all still see one another and communicate while enjoying life.  If you are thinking of renovating and would like to create a more user-friendly space let us help you to understand just what can be achieved using the correct building practises, you might be surprised at just what can be achieved.

using windows in a renovation

Nothing Is Ever The Same

When it comes to renovating (particularly on older properties 100 years plus in age) nothing is ever the same.

Older Properties

Renovating older properties can certainly have its challenges particularly when we look at items such as doors, windows, ceilings, roofs and floors.  Over time a property will move, expand and contract and things will become out of square and un even.  During this process things such as doors and windows will become hard to open and shut and will therefore be planned and adjusted to suit the buildings current conditions.  Other items mentioned such as roofs and ceilings will show signs of cracking and leaking.

However, when we come to perform a renovation its no longer a matter of just purchasing new materials off the shelf from the local hardware supply stores.  Items such as doors will need to be custom ordered or off the shelf items will require major modifications to suit its desired location and purpose.

Restoring Wooden Floors

When we often look at restoring wooden floors the strains and sizes that were available some 100 years ago are surprisingly no longer available straight off the shelf today.  Salvage yards are a good place to start looking for replacement pieces.  If a strain of wood can be found such as oak the lengths may need to be cut to the correct width and planned to required thickness all these processes taking time and adding to the costs of a renovation of an older property.

Many older styles homes had or still have windows which use lead weights inside the cavity attached to a rope and use a cantilever method to keep the window open.  Over the life of the house unfortunately the rope deteriorates and leaves the window inoperable.  These items can certainly be fixed but it is quite labour intensive.  Firstly, the sides of the window frame must be carefully removed which will give us access to the cavity.  Inside the weight used in the canter living process will be found (as seen in picture).

using windows in a renovation

Insulation When Renovating

Many of the older properties in South Australia which have not under gone a significant renovation will still have iron roofs as I touched on earlier in this post.  These roofs are simply installed straight onto timber supports with zero insulation.  Achieving a more energy efficient environment inside the property certainly becomes more of a challenge when we look at renovations on these buildings.  There are internal insulation batts which rest on the gyprock or plater ceilings.  This material can be replaced which is a great start.  But if we are trying to achieve a reduction in noise and a further reduction in heat entering the roof cavity and warm air escaping the cavity a material called sisalation.  Sisalation is a foil blanket which is installed between the roof sheets and the timber battens, another barrier contributing to the maximise the energy properties of a home.

When we look at renovating buildings no project is ever the same for the reason I have mentioned above.  Nothing is ever the same and experience of knowing how to get around the challenges of each project is what has made the Mayfair Building Group a leader in renovations of all shapes and sizes.

why water proofing is important

Waterproofing – A Crucial Part Of Any Renovation

When it comes to getting the perfect result from any type of renovation the time spent earlier in the project on extra preparation will reward you at the end with an AMAZING outcome.

why water proofing is important

Why Waterproof?

The idea of water proofing is as the name suggests it is to water proof the area and prevent the entry of water into unwanted locations i.e. living rooms and bedrooms.   Over time grout and silicone seals can break

down and allow moisture behind the tile itself.  Providing the water proofing has been done by a qualified contractor it will prevent this moisture from damaging the linings of the walls and potentially entering a neighbouring persons property through the floor in apartment style living.

What Areas Should You Consider?

Areas such as the shower which are constantly wet when is use get water proofed on the floor and on the walls to the full height of the tiles.  The water proofing membrane is installed before any tiling is performed and before any painting can be done.  Inside a bathroom the entire floor also gets water proofed as this is wet most of the time a bathroom is in use and even for a short period after the room has been in use until the floor dries out.


When we perform a renovation such as a bathroom make over water proofing is an area which our tilers pay close attention to. We only use the best products available on today’s market with longest warranty periods giving our clients the peace of mind they deserve.  Water proofing is something that you don’t see when a project is finished but if it is not done properly the results later in life when a bathroom has been in use for many years can be catastrophic.  The results from not water proofing properly or at all can lead to the entire wet area needing to be re done and a project like that can cost well into the thousands of dollars not to mention the disruption to your bathroom and home, therefore we always recommend using a qualified company such as the Mayfair Group.

When it comes to water proofing you only get one chance to do the job right so by taking the time necessary to get the job done correctly is certainly worth the effort.