After completing NEIS training through Mission Australia (Toowoomba Office) Jason and Josie Ferris commenced their Pool and Spa construction and maintenance business based in Bundaberg in October 2004. They expected many long hours and at least 12 months before the business was established.
“We got the long hours right,” said Josie, “but the response to our service has been absolutely unbelievable!” After only nine months of operation, the business has three staff working 30 to 40 hours per week and has purchased two work vehicles and a forklift to enable them to meet customer requirements. Turnover has been triple the original forecast and planned net profit has been a staggering five times the original projection.
Customer feedback has seen glowing compliments on their service – both during pool construction and after-sale and word of mouth is helping their business to grow.
Jason and Josie say that the mentoring has “greatly assisted them to grow and learn”.
A 13-storey Townsville building in tropical North Queensland has been revamped, with the help of a $500,000 Australian Government grant.
Mr Messenger from Initial Maintenance Management, who managed the project for Patella Properties, said the company applied for a grant under the Green Building Fund, because they wanted to reduce the building’s energy costs.
“We believe this will possibly be the oldest building in Australia to achieve a five-star rating,” Mr Messenger said. The building is 18 years old.
“We designed the upgrade to achieve a 4½-star rating, and we hope we’ll easily make five stars.
“It was a real team effort,” Messenger told the website. “We spent six months on the project, working after hours, and we now have a much more reliable system. It’s been a good experience. Our tenants are pleased that we’re doing the right thing – that we’re taking the initiative.”
The Green Building Fund helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the energy used in commercial office buildings. Grants have gone to a broad spectrum of buildings, including smaller buildings and commercial space outside metropolitan areas. Money has helped upgrade heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, upgrade common-area lighting, and install building control and monitoring systems to better manage energy use.
In the case of the Townsville property, Mr Messenger’s team developed a plan which included a control system that works with occupancy sensors to ensure that lighting only comes on when the floors are occupied; air conditioning monitors and controls based on occupancy times; careful analysis of various chiller models to determine the most efficient; upgrading cooling tower fans; modernising air distribution systems; and installing systems which recover up to 70 percent of the energy normally lost in the building.
“We believe this will possibly be the oldest building in Australia to achieve a five-star rating,” Mr Messenger told the website. More important to the owners, the government-subsidised project has increased the “building services” life of the tower.
“All we want to do is work with the building owners and managers to achieve a positive outcome within their budget,” Mr Messenger told the website.
Government Grants Australia is an independent research site and is not affiliated with any Australian Government departments or other agencies.