Frequently Asked Questions

Do Panelwood Homes only build transportable homes?

All our designs are transportable, but we can also do the complete build on your own site.

Is it better to transport the house to the site or build on-site?

This is usually determined by the distance of your house site from our construction yard and how easy it is to move the house onto the site. Contact us to discuss transportable homes vs. build on-site.

How much will it cost to transport our home?

Typically the cost of transporting your home and placing it on its foundations is around $12,000 (within 100 kilometres of the construction yard). This cost varies from site to site and can be quoted and included in your building contract with Panelwood Homes.

How long does it take to build a Panelwood home?

Build time for a transportable home is typically around 8 weeks. A home built on-site normally takes 12 weeks. (We could build more quickly, but prefer to focus on quality.) Every build has a guaranteed completion date which is agreed in advance with the client.

What can affect the cost of a home built on-site?

Factors such as the slope of the section, soil conditions, distance from the site boundary for service connections, availability of service connections and proximity to the coast may all affect the cost of building your home on-site. All our building contracts are Fixed Price Contracts, which include and detail on-site factors in the quotation. (Click here to check Panelwood home pricing)

Why are Panelwood homes so warm and comfortable?

Panelwood Homes are insulated above normal New Zealand Building Code requirements. The Metrapanel construction and double glazing control the flow of wet, cold air and moisture and provide superb insulation.

Why are Panelwood Homes "healthy homes"?

The strong Metrapanel construction, double glazing and attention to building detail stop the flow of wet, cold air and moisture into your home. Your home stays dry, warm and healthy.

What choices can we make?

Normally you will have a choice of:

  • Roof colours

  • Window frame colours

  • Exterior cladding colour

  • Interior and exterior paint colour

  • Kitchen plan, appliances and colour scheme

  • Floor covering colours

  • Carpet and vinyl types.

What are the choices in exterior cladding?

Panelwood Homes can be finished with any type of cladding material conforming to the New Zealand Building Code. For our transportable home range we prefer bevel-backed timber weatherboards, "Palliside" low maintenance UPC weather boards, or Ply and Batten.

How do Panelwood Homes perform during an earthquake?

Panelwood homes are superior to timber or steel framed homes in an earthquake. (Download our Earthquake PDF to learn why).

Do Panelwood Homes provide Fixed Price Contracts for all Panelwood builds?

Yes. The only time a quoted price may change is when PC Sums (Provisional Costs) are included.

What is a PC Sum?

A Provisional Sum (as described in building contracts) is an estimate of the cost of carrying out specific work. The estimate includes the cost of supplying any materials needed for the work. An estimate is required if, after making all reasonable enquiries, the builder cannot give a definite amount for the item at the time the contract is entered into.

For example, when estimating for earthworks and excavation at the beginning of a job, the builder can work out a fairly good estimate of the amount of money required for the job without knowing what is actually under the ground. However, it is impossible to be absolutely certain about the final costs, as it is based on a reasonable assumption. If the total volume of rock excavated is greater than the estimated amount, then the increase in cost is based on the extra amount excavated.

Provisional costs sums are also included to allow clients to select their own choice of finishes during the building process.

Any difference between the provisional sum listed in the contract and the actual cost is paid by the client (higher cost) or deducted from the contract price (lower cost). This in effect changes the contract price.

Are Panelwood Homes Master Builders?

Yes, Panelwood Homes are Registered Master Builders.

Are Panelwood builders and subcontractors Licensed Building Practitioners?


Are there extra costs not associated with the home, which I will also have to pay?

There are extra costs, which are not usually included in the builder's quote.

They include:

  • Any resource consent costs

  • Provision of services to the site

  • Connection of services to the house from the site boundary

  • Work needed due to poor subsoil conditions.

  • It's important to know these costs before you confirm the building contract. At Panelwood Homes we make sure you are aware of any costs not included in our building contract.

Are carpets and interior painting included?

We can include carpets, but as a matter of policy, houses quoted ex-site ready for transport are priced without carpets and painting, whereas houses built on-site are quoted including painting and carpets. Click here for contract price inclusions and exclusions.

What fittings are included?

All tap wear and basic light fittings are included. Click here to see a complete list of fittings.

What does Panelwood Homes offer that no one else does?

As "client builders" we are a new class of builder, who combine building excellence and customer service.

Why should I choose Panelwood Homes?

We provide the best value for money homes in the New Zealand market, plus complete customer service to ensure a totally enjoyable building experience.

How strong are Panelwood houses?

We use Metrapanel for walls and ceilings - if you kick the wall your foot will break before the wall does! This means that Panelwood Homes are also ideal as excellent low maintenance rental properties.

Where is Metrapanel made?

Right here in New Zealand at the Laminex plant in Taupo. Then it's machined and painted at the Metrapanel factory in Huntly.

Do I need a building consent?

Yes, any building structure greater than 10 square metres in New Zealand requires a building consent. However, you don't need to worry as Panelwood takes care of the entire consent process for you.

I've never owned or built a home before. Where do I start?

Contact Lance James at Panelwood Homes on free phone 0800 100 945. Lance is a director and owner of Panelwood Homes, so speak to the top man first.

How do I organise all the official documentation?

You don't. We take care of everything for you, even arranging for consents with your local Council.

What do I do about the site I've chosen?

Not only can we clear and excavate your site for your new home, we can also demolish any existing building/s.

How do I know I'm getting good value?

We have done extensive market research on new home pricing and we urge you to do the same. We know you will find we offer the best value - we built our business on it!

Can I get finance?

We have finance options available. Please talk to us about what you need and we'll do our best to find a suitable solution.

Can we have our home built to the "shell-only" stage?

Yes, we are happy to complete your home to this stage.

Can I customise my home?

If none of our standard plans meet your needs, they can be customised. However, any significant changes will incur an additional cost. (Minor changes can be accommodated at no extra cost)

Do transportable homes have a size limit?

There are size limits, but homes and classrooms up to 160 square metres can be moved in a single piece.

Is there much of a price difference between a concrete floor and piles and timber?

On a flat site in town with good ground conditions concrete is marginally cheaper; with a slope greater than 6% timber becomes a cheaper option. For remote sites timber is often a better option and, of course, transportable homes must have timber floors.

Can you build on a site with no access?

Yes, we can use helicopters/barges, etc. (This will incur extra costs.)

What else do you build?

  • Cabins

  • Granny Flats

  • Classrooms

  • School halls

  • Temporary accommodation units

  • Site offices and stores

  • Garages

  • Blokes' Sheds

  • Dog kennels

  • Chook houses!


Our Happy Customers

Carolyn Douglas

Panelwood Homes started my home this month. I have found Lance and Roger professional to deal with, yet friendly and approachable as well. Their communication is excellent and I thoroughly recommend Panelwood Homes to anyone wishing to build.


View Our Plans

2, 3 and 4 bedroom homes

We have a range of standard plans which we can build and transport to your location or build on-site. They include: 2 bedroom, 3 bedroom and 4 bedroom designs in a variety of floor layouts.