The Pod Canberra believes that knowledge is key. We enjoy educating our clients to ensure they know the process, get what they expect and enjoy the process.
Do you have questions for us? Perhaps they are listed below in our FAQ, if not contact us.
TOP 5 QUESTIONS
The Pod layouts and sizes stick to Canberra’s strict adaptability rules but if you’re after something custom please contact up and we will let you know what is possible. Please note, we like to stick with the Pods fundamental build using light-weight construction materials.
Our prices include everything you need in order to move in, we call it a turn key service.
This means we include:
- Architectural Plans, consultant fees* DA approval, BA approval, government fees and certifier fees.
- The full construction with a steel frame and built to Australian standards with home owners warranty insurance.
- Hybrid flooring & block-out roller blinds
- White goods (fridge, microwave, dishwasher, washing machine & dryer)
- Caroma fixtures and fittings
- Stunning kitchen & laundry with quartz stone bench tops and soft close drawers.
- High quality electrical package with dimmers, ceiling speakers and Clipsal Ikon range power points.
Currently, our Pod projects are built within Canberra and outskirts such as Bungendore, Queanbeyan Wamboin & Goulburn. At this stage we are not able to look after clients further than 1 hour from the ACT. We are working on other states as we have had multiple enquiries from all around Australia.
If you are outside the ACT:
We are looking at least 2-3 Pod projects in your area before we can start building. We like to take our trades where we go and currently do not have relationships with other builders or project managers outside ACT and surrounds.
Contact us for building in NSW, TAS & VIC so we can complete approvals for you and suggest builders who can work wit us in your location.
Our Pod dimensions vary depending on the plan. Our plans are predominantly the same size rooms on each plan and we recommend coming to an open at the end of each month to see a Pod and see if it is something you would want to live in or put in your backyard.
The shapes are below with the dimensions. They can be reversed and mirrored. There are also NSW options with a max of 60m2 (1 bedroom variation).
Approximate Pod sizes
L shape Pods:
- Two Bedroom L Shape Pods: 12m x 10m
Rectangular shape Pods:
- Two Bedroom Pod is 16m x 6.4m
- One Bedroom Pod is 12m x 6.4m
- NSW 60m2 Pod is 12m x 5.4m
- Mini Pod 8.7m x 4.5m
- Hybrid Pod 10m x 4.5m
We’ll be more than happy to send you our Pod prices and inclusions list. Please feel free to contact us via this link – https://thepodcanberra.com.au/contact-us/ or check our a blog we created to guide you through the quoting process when looking for Granny Flat & Secondary Residence Builders it’s titled ‘How much will a granny flat cost me?’ click in the title to view.
The approvals may also vary. In Canberra, in our experience if there are no issues with ICON, EVO energy, TTCS or complaints from neighbours, they can take approximately 12 weeks for a secondary residence.
We start to arrange the BA while the DA is processing by engaging the consultants to reduce the time of the BA process. There are multiple consultants that need to provide certificates and reports in order for the certifier to start the process of the BA approval. The certifier checks requirements that the council/ government don’t, therefore on a standard DA approved Pod, these approvals approximately take 4-6 weeks.
First of all, the main residence is meant to have two existing spaces with one undercover. Some older homes may not have this requirements but if you were to renovate or put a secondary residence on the block, you have to comply with the current rules and regulations.
For the secondary residence, there is a requirement to have one large 3.8m wide car space. This space must comply with AS4299 Adaptability code. The car space may be tandem and is not required to be covered.
Therefore it is a legal requirement to show on plan three car spaces on your block in order to build a secondary residence. These spaces must be all behind the building line (front of the house).
According to the ACT Government standards, you can place a secondary residence on a block size bigger than 500m2.
Generally, with our Pods being quite spacious we recommend a minimum block size of 750m2.
North is ideal for energy efficiency and winter warmth, we also recommend in order to get the minimum 6 start energy efficiency it is best for your secondary residence to face North or North East. If you need to face the Pod west there will be additional measures to protect the heat from getting into your Pod.
STANDARD BOUNDARY SETBACKS
ACT Government current requires the below but is subject to change without notice.
- 3m distance the current residence if windows are present (1.5 if no windows are near)
- 1.5m from 1 side boundary and 3m from the other
- 3m from the rear boundary
When you have an easement you must be 2.5 minimum off the boundary / area of the easement and when applying for a Secondary residence ACT usually required us to place a Pod 3 metres from the boundary location to allow for access of machinery.
If your current block has a parklands side (which is classified as anything wider the 6m) it is classified as parklands and has different setback requirements. The parklands set back is 4m.
If your block is on a corner, the building setbacks change again. This means there needs to be one 6 metre set back and a 4 metre setback. If your house is 6m from the boundary (which is usually the water metre location) then the new structure needs to be 4m from the other corner boundary line.
All of the information stated above may change with regulations, updates and TPC cannot hold responsibility for updates or changes to these regulations.
Yes we can. If you’re building a Pod in your backyard and a tree is in the way, we can remove it. Some large tree may need approval and an arborit to remove, therefore it is best to organise a free site inspection and we can let you know when we are visiting on site.
Short answer is that you will need council/government approval to build a secondary residence.
If you’re looking for a sleep out (without a kitchen or laundry) the DA & BA can be processed through the private certifier rather then involving the council.
Even small rooms, garages or carport will need certifier approval. Please check all of the requirements with your local council.
Our Pods are designed with Canberra’s accessibility regulations in mind, so only minimal changes will need to be made to make it compliant for a fully accessible Pod.
Therefore changing walls, bathroom configurations is extremely limited.
We can only offer variations to our existing set plans if our client is not wanting to rent their Pod out, have cooking facilities or be located in NSW.
PRODUCTS & MATERIALS
Sure. This is absolutely possible. We can build on a concrete slab rather than our standard steel frame. Please note that the cost will increase for this change and will extend the build time frame.
Acoustic Batts and Sisalation Paper
Insulation is fibreglass batts for roof, walls, and floor.
We use a steel floor frame with treated timber wall and roof beams for our Pod frames. If you would like steel roof beams and/or wall frames please contact us and we can arrange you a quote.
Our commitment is to make your life easy and to make you 100% happy with your secondary home. We offer a 90-day maintenance period where you can report to us anything that you think needs fixing or corrections on the Pod.
We do not charge for site inspections.
We offer free site inspections if you own the block and as long as your site meets the requirement to build a Pod. We value your time and our goal is to help you decide if the Pod is perfect for you.
Most companies will just show you the bare minimum construction cost and everything you’d want is an extra.
We didn’t like this process when it came to marketing and wanted to give our clients the opportunity to show an all inclusive cost with high quality construction for one cost.
We include the plans, approvals, consultant fees, government fees, quality construction, double glazing, appliances, Stone top kitchen/laundry, white goods, underfloor heating and so much more.
Our suggestion is to obtain 3 quote proposals from different companies with the total fixed price cost from start to finish. This way you can compare all companies with their inclusions.
To get a proposal from us, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yes we can. We would like each client to enjoy their new home and for it to feel boutique, so we can certainly tailor certain products & suppliers.
It may mean a price increase but it is vital to us that you are happy with your new Pod.
In our office you can choose flooring, colourbond and paint colours. To make sure someone is in the office when you arrive please call 0403 843 763.
Yes we can.
We currently work with More Than Mortgages, Deanna Ezzy who is one of the top brokers in Australia. MTM have been brilliant at knowing the Pod product and working with a clients situation to best advise how to achieve their financing approval. We highly recommend MTM. We do not take any referral fees or get any advantage by using MTM, we believe they are the best and use them for that very reason.
If you already have a broker or bank pre approval, we liaise with your bank manager/ broker and yourself with the progress payments along the way with images and updates so it is easier for all parties.
We try and do the most we can to create a simple process for our clients.
Yes, we do install separate electricity meters for the Pod. Please let us know if you do not require this.
In the ACT we cannot separate the gas metre, ACTEW won’t allow us to have 2 metres on one block.
We commit to a 20-year warranty on the facade and structural works. We also provide a 90 day maintenance period.
Each supplier such as tap ware and appliances have new warranties ranging from 15 years to 1 year.
The Pod’s energy efficiency rating is between 6-8 stars. We promote energy efficient Pod and ways on how to make them. We use energy-efficient materials in building the Pod. You can also suggest some materials to be added to your home for it to become more efficient.
Should you be interested to get updates on our open Pod, we can show you through a Pod that is currently being built for one of our clients. Please provide us with your email address and we’ll gladly organise a time to show you though.
The team are often on: site inspections, project checks and meetings with suppliers therefore the office hours are subject to change. Generally we are open from Mondays through Fridays 9 AM to 5 PM but to guarantee someone will be in the office when you’re looking to come in please call us 10-15 mins prior to arriving.
1300 THE POD or 0403 THE POD (0404 843 763).
Yes we can build The Pod as a main residence, we currently have 2,3 & 4 bedroom designs, contact us for designs and further information.
We can still conduct a free online site check we can also come out and do a site inspection with you. The things to look out for are the boundary restrictions, pods sizes, proximity to house, parking requirements and basic disability/ accessibility rules (think to yourself how could we get a wheelchair up into a pod without help, things such as a sloping block can cause issues in getting approval).
Disclaimer: We cannot give advice on whether to purchase or not a Property. The information on the site analysis is intended to provide unofficial advice on whether a Pod can fit or can be applied to the property. While we have taken into consideration every rules and regulation in ACT for secondary homes to ensure that we provide helpful information – actual site inspection, house survey and drainage plans are needed to accurately provide Pod plans on the site.
For plans, drainage and your file from council, visit the below link.
Please note it will only work if you’re located in Canberra.
There are certain rules in the ACT that make it difficult to get heritage sites approved for secondary residence such as The Pod but we work with heritage architects and may be able to find out a way to help.
Only minimal conversions will be required to make the Pod completely accessible for people with a disability. In saying that we can create the Pod as a wheelchair friendly Pod. We create the appropriate ramps, kitchen, even an iPad for operating your lights and doors.
One of our objectives is to bring our clients a low-maintenance and stress-free home that they can use and enjoy for a lifetime.
If you are looking for an urgent solution it is best to call us and see what we can do.
The Pod is a family-owned business. The people behind the modern design Pod are Jacki Valk, Rob Valk and Deb Valk.