DESTROYED: Building company director Brad Acheson assessing the new Arthur Summons Place home which was set alight just two weeks before completion. Photo: IVAN McDONNELLA “gutless act of vandalism” has ruined a local couple’s dream of moving into their new home, and forced a building company to demolish the property just two weeks before hand-over.
The $200,000 Arthur Summons Place property in Eastridge Estate was near completion when a fire, that Dubbo police said was deliberately lit, swept through the home and completely destroyed the roof, garage, most of the walls and windows.
Building company Brad Acheson Homes was the principal contractor for the property, which it had been working on for the past four months.
The company’s director Brad Acheson said the home was to be handed over to his clients, who didn’t wish to be named, in just two weeks.
“It’s one of those unforeseen things – a gutless act of vandalism,” Mr Acheson said.
“I sort of felt more sorry for the owners, I see 30 houses a year and they’re all the same to me in a sense but that’s their kitchen and their home exactly how they planned it – they’re devastated.
“They feel violated and said to me ‘why would someone do this?’
“I’ve been in the building industry for 10 years and I’ve never seen anything like this.”
The Dubbo fire brigade was called to the blaze about 5am on Saturday and Mr Acheson arrived at the scene about 20 minutes after to find the home completely alight.
Seven-foot high ringlock fences will now be erected around all the company’s building sites in an attempt to deter vandals.
The home was fully insured and Mr Acheson said the company had yesterday received the “best possible outcome” from insurance assessors GAB Robins.
“My first thought when I saw the fire was ‘Jesus, I hope I’m insured’,” he said.
“The insurance company has given us the authority to fully demolish the house which is the best outcome we could have hoped for.
“It wouldn’t have been a new house for our clients if we had to rebuild some of it but not all of it.”
The company will demolish the home on Saturday before starting the building process again – a task expected to take about 18 weeks.
Mr Acheson said the only building materials that would be salvaged were some parts of the kitchen that had not been as badly damaged.
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