Melbourne Building Site Costs – Essential Things You Must Consider

Building your dream home can come with unexpected challenges, like site costs. Learn more about Melbourne building site costs below.

These costs play a crucial role in ensuring your new home stands strong, durable, and safe so it is important to discuss this with your builder.

We are experienced house designers and builders serving Melbourne’s northern and western suburbs for over 16 years.

We understand the importance of shedding light on these costs for our prospective clients so here are the essentials you need to consider.

What are site costs?

Site costs are expenses incurred when preparing a block of land for construction.

Examples of site costs include excavation, earthwork, foundation work, site access, and utility connections.

Fixed site costs are when your builder provides a predetermined amount for site costs before construction, covering any additional costs incurred during the process.

Understanding site costs

Site costs encompass various expenses associated with land preparation.

To better comprehend these costs, let’s delve into the key factors influencing them.


The slope of your block, known as fall, is a critical factor. Measured diagonally across the building line, it determines how much excavation or filling is needed to create a level foundation.

Melbourne Building Site Costs - Elite New Homes

Before construction, an engineer assesses the soil through drilling to identify rocks. The presence of rocks may necessitate removal, impacting the construction process and cost. Additionally, soil density testing determines the need for additional concrete piers.


Building on a block with many trees can pose challenges. Tree removal is often required, and even retained trees can threaten the structural integrity of your home over time due to their root beds.

Melbourne Building Site Costs - Elite New Homes
Cut & Fill

Achieving a level block requires soil excavation (cut) and addition (fill) in different sections. Proper leveling is essential for a stable foundation.


Easements are designated areas on your block accessible to local authorities for services like water and sewage. Building too close to easements incurs additional costs, and awareness of neighboring blocks’ easements is crucial.


In cases of significant falls, developers may batter the block to maintain flat areas. Building too close to the batter line incurs extra costs, affecting landscaping expenses.

Retaining Walls

Blocks with substantial falls may require retaining walls to prevent landslides or erosion. The need for retaining walls can impact costs, as additional concrete may be necessary to ensure stability.

Contact us for more information.

Site costs are not one-size-fits-all. They vary from block to block and to navigate these costs effectively you should engage in open conversations about site costs with your chosen builder. Remember that flexibility is key as these costs can change during the preparation process. This is just a sample of the things you may not know you need to know but don’t worry, because we’re here to help.