Our Story

In the 1950s an enterprising young boat builder and carpenter named Walter Turnbull Phillips left Scotland for a new life in Australia, settling in the Melbourne bayside suburb of Mordialloc. Melbourne’s post-war building boom offered ample opportunities for a hard-working carpenter and Walter was soon building houses. His son, also called Walter, worked alongside him learning the trade.

The young Walter continued to work as a carpenter until the 1980s when he obtained his builder’s license and launched his own company in 1989. He called the new business WALTARA, a name created by combining Walter with his wife’s name Barbara. Over the next two decades, Waltara Homes would build hundreds of new homes throughout the new suburbs that sprung up on Melbourne’s southeast fringe.

Walter’s son, Scott, was 17 and fresh out of school when he strapped on the toolbelt and started his carpentry apprenticeship with his father. Once qualified, he continued to work in the family business, eventually becoming Waltara’s first Construction Manager. With the arrival of digital technology in the early 2000s, Walter passed the daily management of the business to Scott, while he returned to what he loved most and continued to work on-site until his retirement in 2008.

Scott Phillips took his father’s retirement as an opportunity to spread his wings and to start his own building company, Cardinia Homes, which, like Waltara, became renowned as a quality home builder on the Mornington Peninsula.

Fast forward to 2021 when Scott decided to revive the Waltara Homes brand and re-establish the family’s business for the next generation. Scott says that becoming a father himself has made him reflect on the value of family and the goodwill earned by his father and grandfather – a gift too precious to lose. His kids are still very young, but nothing would make Scott happier than to see one, or all of his children join the family business and perhaps be there to take the reins when he decides to retire himself.

Every day, hundreds of families across Melbourne’s southeast and the Peninsula wake up in a Waltara-built home. It’s a proud legacy that is set to continue.

1989 Waltara Homes
2008 Cardinia Homes / Hotondo Homes Mornington / Hotondo Homes Pakenham
2021 Waltara Homes

Our Values

Here are some of the key principles that guide our business.

Nothing is more
important than family.

We are a family business, inspired by and built upon the love and sacrifice of family past and present. The way we operate must always support the healthy and happy family life of our staff and our customers.

Every Home
has meaning.

A home represents different things to different people – a nest to raise a family, a refuge of security, an expression of status, a place to gather with loved ones, an escape from everyday life. Our job is to understand what’s important to our customers and help meet this need within their budget.

Pride in
Our Workmanship

We are a company founded by tradesmen. We respect and acknowledge the skill of carpenters, bricklayers, electricians, plumbers, tilers, glaziers and many others who help build our homes and uphold our reputation for quality and professionalism.

Our Focus is on Service,
not the Sale

Customers may hear what we say, but they believe what we do. Every day we strive to make the experience of building a new home as collaborative, enjoyable and memorable as possible at every opportunity.