Extensions & New Homes

Extend or move? It’s a question that many growing families face, but research suggests that a carefully thought-out extension can be more beneficial for your family – and your budget – for years to come! Whether you’ve outgrown your bedroom space, need more room to move in your older home, or simply want to open up for light and space, Milliken Builders is here to help.

Or perhaps you’re ready to build your dream home. Our trusted tradesmen will work with you and your plans to create a family home for your future. Let us help you source quality materials and finishes, and build your home on time and on budget.

Getting Started

Milliken Builders is a custom home builder. We specialise in small to medium extensions and renovations. We are also able to assist with larger extensions and renovations or new homes.

Custom home builders build unique, one-of-a-kind designs. They are usually designed by a draftsperson or an architect specifically for the site and tailored to suit the client. Custom builders tend to be smaller volume builders due to the extra time involved in building one-off designs.

  • If you are extending or doing a structural renovation to an existing home you will need a custom builder.
  • If you are building a new home you have more options. You can use a custom builder, a project home builder or a speculative builder.
Extension by Milliken Builders
Extension of a home in the Illawarra

What to expect at your first meeting

Your first appointment with Troy is a great opportunity to meet him and chat about your ideas and goals. Most clients are anxious to get an idea of cost. They also want to know when construction can start and how long it will take. At this early stage it is difficult to give definite answers to these questions.

This initial appointment is more about getting to know each other. When you hire Milliken Builders to extend or build your new home you are inviting us into your lives for several months. This is a time to see if the builder/client relationship is a good fit for you and for us.

This is also a good chance to get ideas about what can or can’t be done on your property and what Council rules and regulations may affect your potential build. If you already have plans drawn it is a chance to review your plans and answer any questions.

Setting your budget

Be sure to allow for all stages of the process when setting your budget, not just the construction stage. Here are the important items to include in your budget:

  • Financing - loan application fees and rent or housing during construction
  • Planning - drafting or architectural fees, Development Application fee
  • Pre-construction - additional council requirements and fees, Long Service Levy, engineering fees, survey fees, certifier fees, costs for on-site connection to services
  • Construction - site costs, what goes below ground to support your extension AND what goes above ground
  • Extras/variations - unforeseen extra work, a product upgrade, changes requested during construction, extra work requested during construction etc
  • Post construction costs - items that you may want but may not be included in your builder’s quotation such as landscaping, fences and gates, driveways and paths etc
Bedroom renovation builder Illawarra NSW
Stairs in a home built by Milliken Builders

Pre-construction Services

We get asked all the time if we provide in-house drafting, if we prepare and submit applications for Council or Compliant Development Approval and if we arrange Certifiers, Engineers and Surveyors. The simple answer is – no.

Every client we have is unique and every job is unique. This means the cost of these services for each client would be uniquely different. For this reason we believe it is more cost effective for you to source these services through experts who provide them as their core business. We are available to make recommendations, answer questions and offer support throughout the process.

What you can expect during construction

  • Project management to keep project progressing smoothly without unnecessary delays.
  • Regular site meetings to answer questions and discuss solutions for any issues that crop up.
  • Our carpentry team handle external work up to lockup – excavation and footings, framing walls and roof trusses, installing fascia, eaves, cladding, windows, doors – and internal work such as hanging gyprock, waterproofing, fixing out architraves, doors and door handles.
  • Local, reliable trades are subcontracted to provide electrical, plumbing, plastering, painting, steel fabrication, and shower screens. We use the same contractors on all our jobs so they know our processes and make our build schedule a priority.
  • We source our materials locally so your build dollars remain in the Illawarra. We only look outside the area for specialty items that aren’t available locally.
Gerringong renovations by Milliken Builders

Extension / Renovation Timeline



  • Mark out, site fencing, portaloo delivery
  • Demolition and disposal of waste


  • Excavation
  • Footings and pilings
  • Piers
  • Slabs

Lock Up

  • Frames and trusses
  • Roofing, fascia and guttering
  • Windows and doors
  • Cladding
  • Eaves

Internal Linings

  • Electrical rough in
  • Plumbing rough in
  • Insulation
  • Plaster
  • Fix out 

Bathrooms & Kitchens

  • Bathroom renovations
  • Kitchen renovations

Finish Off

  • Painting
  • Floor coverings
  • Electrical fit off
  • Plumbing fit off
  • Miscellaneous fit off
Bathroom in a new home by Milliken Builders

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need building approval?

As a rule of thumb anytime you increase your floor to land ratio or the habitable space on your property you will need Council approval. This may be as Compliant Development or as a Development Application. Some projects do not require approval. These are called Exempt Development and can be found by contacting your local council or by checking with us.

Why do I need engineering?

Engineers provide the materials and specifications for what supports your home (ex foundations, piers, slabs, support beams) so that your home is properly supported.

Why do I need a survey report?
It is required so what you are building ends up in the correct spot on your property.
Why do I need a Certifier?

Certifiers make sure that all your plans, specifications, approvals etc are in order before construction starts and they carry out critical stage inspections during construction. Afterwards they check that all completion paperwork has been provided, carry out the final inspection and approve your build for occupation.

What fees will I have to pay?

Architectural or drafting fees, Compliant Development or Development Application fees, occasionally miscellaneous Council fees, Engineering, Survey and Certifier fees, Long Service Levy and Home Owners Warranty Insurance.

Can I make changes after you have quoted, after we have signed contracts and after construction begins?

Yes, we are flexible and will try to accommodate changes. If the changes create additional work and/or material costs for us we will pass these on to you in the form of an ‘extra/variation’. Examples of extra/variations are unforeseen extra work required to complete the original work, a more expensive product than was quoted, changes to the plans provided or scope of work and additional work requested that was not in the original scope.

What happens if there are hidden problems?

Hidden problems can be found when we start any required excavation and/or demolition. Examples of these might be structural problems, water damage, termite damage or asbestos. Milliken Builders has the skills and resources to quickly identify any issues, discuss options and any additional costs with you, and get your renovation back on track as quickly as possible.

Your house may look ‘OK’ and you may have been ‘safely’ living in it for a long time but there could be items that do not meet current Australian Standards. If any of these items are identified during demolition/construction, they must be replaced or upgraded to meet the current standard. These upgrades are usually not optional and must be funded by the homeowner. Examples of commonly required upgrades of this nature are tempering valves on old water heaters or electrical meter box upgrades.

Let us bring your vision to life