Renovated 1960s House 2024

House Notes – Renovated 1960s House

Please watch the brief house tour video to see a description of the sustainability features of the photos.

This timber frame house was built in the early 1960s, and one family lived in it until we purchased it about 6 years ago. A timber house is a carbon capture house, with the carbon captured by the living tree not released until the house burns down or rots!

We gutted the interior walls (which were in poor condition) and insulated all the interior and exterior walls – this makes the house so comfortable year round and so energy efficient! The insulation is the main sustainability feature of the house – but impossible to show in photos!.

Though we installed an energy efficient reverse cycle air conditioner/heater we never use it because the insulation keeps the house so comfortable. We just use fans during heatwaves, and in winter, we use a carbon neutral wood fireplace to heat the home.

We also have solar, and use an induction cooktop. Unfortunately at the time we renovated we didn’t understand how bad gas is for the climate and we have a gas hot water heater and a now unused gas cooktop. When the hot water heater dies, we will replace it with an efficient heat pump hot water heater.

We use the house’s greywater on the garden which is 100% edible, collect rainwater, compost our compostable waste, and planted a deciduous tree to shade a western-facing bedroom. The transpiration and shade of the many trees we have planted will help us cope with heatwaves, and we’ve planted species that are more suited to long droughts.

Sustainability Features

Years Open
2024
ENERGY AND WATER EFFICIENT FEATURES
    • Energy efficiency:
    • Draught proofing
      Efficient lighting
      Efficient appliances
    • Passive heating cooling:
    • Cross ventilation
      Deciduous planting around house
      External planting
    • Active heating cooling:
    • Ceiling fans
      Split system airconditioner
    • Water harvesting and saving features:
    • Rainwater storage - Above ground
      Grey water system
    • Above ground rainwater storage Type:
    • Tank
    • Above ground rainwater storage Size
    • 2,500?
    • Energy Efficient Lighting
    • LED lights throughout
      Natural daylight
    • Window Protection:
    • Blinds
      Deciduous tree/vegetation
      Louvres
SUSTAINABLE & RECYCLED MATERIALS
    • Sustainable materials:
    • Polished existing floor boards
INSULATION SPECIFICATIONS
    • Insulation Type:
    • Ceiling
      Internal walls
      External walls
    • Ceiling Type:
    • Earthwool (wool and fibreglass)
    • Internal Walls Insulation Type:
    • Earthwool
    • External Walls Type:
    • Earthwool
RENEWABLE ENERGY SPECIFICATIONS
    • All-Electric Home?
    • No
    • Renewable energy used:
    • Solar PV grid connect
    • Size of PV system:
    • 6.6
COSTS AND COST SAVINGS
    • Cost estimate of sustainable home/features:
    • $80,000 + own labour
    • Estimate of annual savings:
    • Our electricity is always in credit
HOUSE DESIGN SPECIFICATIONS
    • House Size
    • 170 m2
    • BAL Rating
    • No BAL rating requirements at time of construction
    • Roof
    • Metal (Colorbond)
    • Wall Materials
    • Timber
    • Window and Door Types
    • Sliding windows/doors
    • Universal Design Features
    • Window openings easily accessible
    • Number of bedrooms
    • 3
    • Number of bathrooms
    • 2
GARDEN AND WASTE REDUCTION
    • Garden / Outdoors
    • Bee hotels/friendly
      Bird-nesting boxes
      Community vegetable garden
      Composting
      Edible garden
      Frog friendly
      Green walls
      Orchard
      Organic
      Permaculture
      Water wise plants
      Wicking beds
      Worm farm
    • Waste Reduction Practices:
    • Compost all food scraps
      Make jams/conserves
      Pickle and preserve food
      Recycle
      Swap with friends and neighbours
HEALTHY HOME FEATURES
    • Healthy home features
    • Cabinet design to minimise dust collection
      Carpet free - tiles/concrete/timber flooring throughout
      Cross flow ventilation
      Natural fibre furnishings
      Natural light and ventilation
Location
Newtown QLD 4350
    • Housing Type:
    • Standalone House
    • Project Type:
    • Renovation

View the house tour

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