Monday, April 25, 2011

Money, money, money

We are pretty close to our final payment, and as a few people have been asking me, I thought I'd post briefly about money. We're still fiddling with our spreadsheet of costs, so the absolute final cost is yet to be confirmed, but roughly speaking, we've paid about $2,500 per m2 for a house of approximately 160m2 of usable floor space (i.e. not including the voids and the crawl spaces upstairs on the south).

That price includes everything but the land: design, fees, permits, all materials and the build itself.  Not bad for a bloody beautiful house in this day and age. I will ultimately post the spreadsheet, and try to quantify some of the variables, such as the reverse brick veneer.

In other eco-financial-domestic news, we're about to install 18 grid connected solar panels, which will actually save us a small amount of money every year. It would save us even more if we didn't already have 100% green power.

And finally, we're yet to install thermometers and temperature logs, but the house is performing really well. I imagine most readers in Melbourne will have a heater on by now. We have no heater at all, and (at 9:15 at night) Rodney is in a t-shirt. I'm quite comfortable here downstairs in a t-shirt and medium weight cotton knit top, but will need to take off my top layer when I go upstairs as it's considerably warmer up there.

Since the cold descended, it's been around 19 degrees in the living room when we get up at 6:30am.

Of course, we're yet to see how we go with several days of low sunlight in a row. That - and the 35 degree plus days - will be the big test. I'm starting to feel optimistic that we might not need a heating system. The oven pumps out a fair amount of heat, so maybe we'll just resort to more oven baked meals in the dead of winter! :)



Okay, so they aren't brilliant, and we still have shit everywhere, but people have been asking to see what we've built, so here you go. Inside is still too much of a mess to show you!

In case you are starting to get Block Envy, note that our friends will be building on that patch of dirt next door. There will be 4.5m between us (enough for sun to penetrate our lower windows in winter) and we'll share the backyard.


This is the northern face of our house. Winter sun will stream in. The wide eaves shade us in summer.

This is our street face.

This is our house viewed from the back of the block next door.