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Sustainable Home Renovation: Part 2 - The 1970s changes


Part 1 - The Original Built House - late 1960's
Part 2 - The 1970's changes
Part 3 - The current owners - 2007 purchase
Part 4 - Renovate or Detonate

The 1970's was a decade of change for the home.

In 1971, an extension was added to the back of the house by the original owners. The plans were signed off in August of 1971 by the Building surveyor at the council and it's assumed the extension would have been finished in the same year or early 1972. The new extension added a 4th Bedroom and a rumpus room to the southern end of the home. After only a couple of years, the home was either impractical, or needed to be larger to accommodate a growing family.

The original home was built by a building company, but according to current neighbours, the owner did the renovation at the back of the house themselves. During the major renovations in 2008, it was clear that the renovation was built by an unqualified carpenter. The amount of nails joining each piece of timber far exceeded what was required. The floor was also only 300mm at the most from the ground, less to the floor joists and bearers unlike the original house which had 600mm in the tightest spot.


Somewhere between 1972 and 1978, the home was sold to the homes second owners. in 1978 they added the pergola at the front of the house facing west (see photo above). This sat on top of the double garage below. Made out of treated pine, the roof was made of 50x50mm square battens running east west with a gap of 50mm. This structure would have helped reduce the impact of the westerly sun hitting the large glass area of the westerly living room wall. The vegetation on the neighbouring property was only young so provided no shade. The photo above taken in 2007 of the house would look no different to 1978 (other than the front garden).

An extension was also added on to the existing kitchen at some stage after 1978 but it is unknown when. This extension was a dining room and was constructed over the concrete landing and steps which one would have stepped out on when exiting from the laundry or the kitchen. The laundry became a fully internal room. It is known that a path led from the steps from the kitchen and laundry landing in 2 directions - one to the side of the house leading to the front of the house and one leading to a hills hoist (presumably) clothes line and then to the main backyard itself. This dining room extension had a large aluminium sliding door and aluminium window facing east - the only aluminium framed windows/doors in teh house. Perhaps this was an 80's extension.

After these renovations the house still only rated as 0.9 stars.

How was the house cooled and heated in the 1970's. We are unsure as to what cooling appliances may or may not have been in place, but heating appears to be predominantly by the fireplace in the lounge room.

At some stage (presumably) in the 1980s, the home had ducted gas heating installed, and 2 box air-conditioners (very inefficient) were located, one in the north wall next to the chimney (see photo above), and one in the south wall of the rumpus room.

What was located in the backyard during the 1970s/1980s?

We have no idea but could assume based on other similar homes of the late 60s, that there was a grassed area most likely fringed by bordered garden using concrete edges. There was a tin single garage on the south west side of the home when the current owners moved in, in 2007. This was partioned into 2 rooms, one a laundry and storage room, and the toher the pool filter and equipment. Yes, this place has a pool, and it appears according to the pool drawings to have been built in the 1980s. There are a number of pools which are almost identical in shape but identical in build in the surrounding areas, and one "pool guy" who has worked in the area for 20 years said it was a Grollo built pool. Grollos started small and look at them today - they build skyscrapers.

This pool has taken up the majority of the back yard - no more grass or any area for kids to play football - its all water sports or nothing. The pool is a large concrete pool with painted blue surface, and a pebblemix finish to the coping surrounding the pool (no tiles anywhere). Around 9 metres x 4.5metres with a 1.5m x 1.5m section at one end with steps leading into the pool. Depth average around 2'6" to appox 5'8". It appears that the earth removed from excavating for the pool was placed in the front yard as well as in the East area of the home where the dining room looked out. Removing earth from this area for the 2008 renovations found the original foot path and locatoin of the clothes line. At least the owners saved on Earth removal.

Oh, and one more thing was added to the backyard - a palm tree - only small. (Look at the photo - you can see it in the backyard south west corner and in 2012 stands around 12-15metres in height.)

Part 3 - The current owners - 2007 purchase