Well it looks my optimism was premature. In an article on General-Anzeiger it seems that I'm not the only on frustrated by delays. The couple in the article are already submitting their planning application and have been trying for several months only to be prevented by both the lack progress on site and re-zoning of the land. Re-zoning may be approved next month but building approval takes an average of 10 weeks so the couple forecast that they may only be able to begin building in September. That's a 10 month delay before even starting!
Allkauf wouldn't prepare my planning application until the land was in my name so I've been stuck at an earlier stage. I knew that the application was now the time-critical step but the fact that the land is not yet re-zoned and the slow procedure means it must go in asap. Then there will be another long wait.
It seems clear that the Gemeinde Swisttal is mostly to blame for the delay. The ridiculous political situation delayed the development by months and the lack of significant progress re-zoning the land will cause further delays. However G+S Wohnbau are far from innocent in this matter. Their slow progress on site has significantly contributed to the delays. But what is more troubling is that they have been aware of the situation at every step but have not been transparent with the buyers of the land. Again I find myself finding out about the project from the local newspaper not the developer.
Friday, 6 March 2015
Things have been quiet since the meeting with the architect. The only news was an invitation to the 'boundary appointment'. All owners of the individual plots were encouraged to join so the border marks could be pointed out and explained.
It was very straight forward, the surveyor took me to each border stone and border mark and showed where it was on the plan. As I was standing in the mud I realised that it was the first time I had actually stood on my land, I had not had access to the original sports field and it had been a building site for the past few months. It was gratifying but also made me realise just how far there is to go.
It has been raining a lot and there were puddles on the land but it wasn't the quagmire that you might imagine. The sand and gravel in the soil are very obvious so this should make it well drained. Hopefully this will mean I can go with the cheaper basement but I suspect that to be safe the expensive one will be recommended.
G+S Wohnbau have still not completed the work there. In fact it seemed that nothing has been done in weeks. Thankfully this no longer seems to be the rate determining step.
Since my meeting with the Allkauf architect (from Vewoplan) there has been no news. I guess they're waiting for the geologists (from Stephan Brauckmann) who have been wasting time by not going to the site for the past few months even though there was very easy access. The architect told me that they would visit within a couple of weeks. As soon as that deadline passes I'll start applying pressure.
I did contact Vewoplan to make a slight alteration to the plan we had discussed, confirm the rest of the changes and ask a question. Unfortunately they haven't yet responded. This lack of communication is disappointing and very frustrating but not unexpected.
I did my accounts in detail following the architect meeting. It looks like I can afford the alterations with the exception of the dormers/gable even if I need the expensive basement. The difference between the sales pitch and the real budget (even at this first revision) still annoys me but for now things are still affordable and that's a relief, I don't expect that this will last though.