Susan’s Home on the Hill 2024

House Notes – Susan’s Home on the Hill

My home sits on a hill, in the bush and faces north. We moved to Tassie for the sailing and the bush and lived on our boat while we built our home, which is built in 3 units with skillion roofs sloping down an east facing hill. The east and west facing walls are rendered concrete block, while the north and south walls are clad in Mini-orb and Cement sheet. In the open plan living, kitchen and dining areas, in my sewing room and in the main bedroom, there are full length sliding doors and windows, retrofitted with double glazing. The ceilings in the main living area have laminated Tas Oak timber trusses and all floors and ceilings are Tasmanian Oak.

I have a wood burning stove which I use rarely and heat pumps in the living area and in the main bedroom. Wall heaters heat the sewing room and other bedrooms while the two bathrooms have fan heaters and exhaust fans.

I have 36 solar panels capable of generating 10kw and two, 5kw Fronius inverters. I have evacuated solar tubes for hot water, a Zappy Charger for my EV and an induction stove top and an electric oven. I do still use a gas barbecue.

I have 3 sheds, a caged veggie garden, a glass house, a caged area for growing trees and an olive grove.

I wanted to create a sustainable house for philosophical reasons, to reduce my carbon footprint, at the same time knowing at my age, I may not be able recoup the cost of these improvements which were installed over the last 15 years. However, these changes have in fact resulted in significant savings, especially the solar panels with which I charge my car. And with the use of off peak power, savings have been substantial.

Sustainability Features

Years Open
    • Energy efficiency:
    • Draught proofing
      Efficient lighting
      Efficient appliances
      Energy monitoring
    • Passive heating cooling:
    • Cross ventilation
      External planting
      Passive solar designed home
    • Active heating cooling:
    • Heat pump

    • Active heating cooling:
    • Wood burning stove used only on very cold nights
    • Water heating:
    • Solar hot water (evacuated tube)
    • Water harvesting and saving features:
    • Rainwater storage - Above ground
      Low flow shower heads

    • Average water consumption per day:
    • 40L
    • Above ground rainwater storage Type:
    • Poly Tanks
    • Above ground rainwater storage Size
    • 6 X 20,000L tanks
    • Water harvesting and saving
    • Water is collected from the roofs into gutters and then into tanks
    • Energy Efficient Lighting
    • LED lights throughout
      Natural daylight
    • Electric Vehicle Type
    • Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric
    • Window Protection:
    • Blinds
    • Sustainable materials:
    • Yellow Tongue used under the floor boards.
    • Insulation Type:
    • Under-roof
      External walls
    • Under Roof Insulation Type:
    • Fiberglass Blanket
    • Under Roof Insulation Rating:
    • R 1
    • External Walls Rating:
    • R 2
    • External Walls Type:
    • Bulk – glass wool
    • All-Electric Home?
    • No
    • Renewable energy used:
    • Solar PV grid connect

    • Size of PV system:
    • 10Kw
    • Renewable energy
    • Solar tubes for Hot water
    • Average Daily Energy Consumption:
    • 10.69kWh/ 1 person
    • Total cost of home when constructed:
    • 400,000$ built in 2000
    • Cost estimate of sustainable home/features:
    • 810,000 based on 2022 Tasmanian Valuation of Land Act
    • Estimate of annual savings:
    • $6500
    • House Size
    • 200m2
    • BAL Rating
    • BAL – 19: Increasing levels of ember attack and ignition of debris with a heat flux of up to 19kW/m2
    • Roof
    • Metal (Colorbond)
    • Wall Materials
    • Concrete blocks
      Lightweight construction (timber frame)
      Metal (Colorbond)

    • Wall Materials
    • Cement sheet, Mini-orb
    • Window and Door Types
    • Clerestory windows
      Louvre windows
      Retrofit Double Glazing
      Sliding windows/doors
    • Universal design accessability
    • Multi-generational
    • Universal Design Features
    • 80cm minimum door opening width
      Contrasting colours and material for vision impaired
      Hobless showers
      Kitchen bench/table for wheelchairs to access (75-85cm high)
      Lever handles for doors (no knobs)
      Minimum 110cm wide hallways
      Remote power open and close doors
      Rocker style light switches
      Semi recessed basins
      Slip resistant flooring
      Window openings easily accessible
    • Number of bedrooms
    • 4
    • Number of bathrooms
    • 2
    • Garden / Outdoors
    • Use my Aerobic waste water for watering my native plants
    • Garden / Outdoors
    • Bee hotels/friendly
      Drip irrigation
      Edible garden
      Frog friendly
      Local indigenous plants
      Native plants
      Worm farm

    • Waste Reduction Practices:
    • Book exchange/library
      Compost all food scraps
      Make jams/conserves
      Pickle and preserve food
      Swap with friends and neighbours
    • Healthy home features
    • Cabinet design to minimise dust collection
      Carpet free - tiles/concrete/timber flooring throughout
      Chemical free cleaning products used
      Cross flow ventilation
      Indoor plants for air filtration
      Natural fibre furnishings
      Natural light and ventilation
      Natural oil sealer/finishes
      Wax based sealer/finish
Kettering TAS 7155
    • Housing Type:
    • Standalone House
    • Project Type:
    • New Build
    • Builder
    • Local Tasmanian Builder
    • Designer
    • Local Tasmanian Architect

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