Renovate or Rebuild Episode 1 – Family Cottage Renovation Design and New Home Design in Malabar NSW

(light music) – The house we’re about to visit is ready for change. The family who live here have outgrown.


(light music) – The house we’re about to
visit is ready for change. The family who live here have outgrown it. They love the area and want to stay. With the help of expert design teams, this home is gonna get
the treatment it deserves. But, there’s a very important
decision to be made. On one hand, they could
renovate, on the other, knock down and rebuild. It’s a massive decision
for the owners to make. To make sure that they end
up with the comfortable, healthy, and efficient home
that they’ve always dreamt of. And of course, budget is always an issue. One family, two teams, one
question, Renovate or Rebuild? (mid tempo hip hop music) I’m Josh Byrne, an environmental scientist with a passion for beautifully designed, healthy, and efficient homes that save energy, water and money. I’ve got the call out from
owners Stephen and Alison to discuss their home mere in Malabar, a quiet, coastal suburb,
just 12 kilometers southeast of the Sydney CBD. The median house price in Malabar is around the two million
mark, but luckily, Stephen and Alison bought
the property before the boom. Their home is ready for change
and they need some help. This is a great area,
what brought you here? – We were living in the
inner west with our in laws, just had a baby, and we
were looking for somewhere that just had a bit more
space and also access to nature and open space. – [Josh] Stephen, Alison, Luca and Milly are a young, active family.
(laughing) They enjoy nature and love being part of their seaside community. And they also love bike riding. – Gotcha! – So your home is really cute. What is it that’s not working for you? – Yeah we absolutely love our home. But it’s just a little bit too small. We’ve got kids now that are
six and four sharing a room and we see that it’s having an end date, they’ll eventually want their own space. – It was sold as a knock down,
but we couldn’t afford it so we did as much as we
could to make it livable, so the outside and tidied up the inside. But structurally there’s a
lot of damp, rising damp. – And the rising damp
issues are causing problems? – We do have some moisture
issues, definitely. Then there’s also the sewer. We’ve still got our original pipes, so we’ve got a few issues there like we need to redo the bathroom and put in modern pipes.
– Sometimes we lay in bed and there’s the odd odour.
(laughing) – You pointing fingers at one another!–
– Emanates indeed! (flushing) – Sold as a knock down, the
family have been putting up with bad smells, rising damp and mold which can be really bad for your health. Plus the house is too small
for this growing family. These things need to be addressed, but there’s also a lot
to love about this house. So what is it about the
house that does work for you? What do you like about it as it is? – I love its character. The cornices, the big
windows, the natural light, the beautiful old polished floor boards. There’s a lot of character there that you might not be able
to get in a new build. – And the aspect, we love the aspect. But in modern urban areas,
we’re now being built out so to recapture the view that we once had when we moved in, there’s some
adjustment we need to make to really capitalize on that. And the light and ventilation
that is available on that lot. – How about the performance of the home in terms of comfort and
air quality and light? – I’ve noticed that in summer
we’re using the fans more. And luckily at the moment
we can block off the rooms so in the winter we can
heat up little areas but definitely like to
improve the energy efficiency and understand the way in
which we’re using energy and moderate that, and teach the kids about energy use as well. – [Josh] OK, we’re getting a good idea of what Stephen and
Alison are looking for. More space for a start. They’d like to keep
the character they love and recapture their ocean views. They want an efficient,
comfortable, and healthy home that matches their active lifestyle. And there’s more on their wish list. – One thing really keen
for is a granny flat, one for the in laws but also
as a potential income stream to help fund the new design.
– Of course, this also needs to be within their budget. Stephen and Alison have set an absolute maximum spend of $1 million. So the designs will need to
include everything on the list without breaking this limit. We’re going to need some
help from the experts to see if all of this is
achievable, let’s meet the teams. On Team Renovate, we
have Michael and Carlene. Fan favorites from The Block, and stars of their own
show, Ready Set Reno. These guys have an eye for character, injecting their unique
style on every project. They will go to any length
to reinvent the past and renovate all the way. On team rebuild, we have Norm and Jess, The Block’s true blue
heroes and radio superstars. They have a soft spot for heavy machinery and will be looking for any chance to knock it down and rebuild. The winning team will get to donate $1000 to their charity of choice. And if we’ve learned anything
from watching these guys on The Block, it’s that
they love to win, game on. – Here we are. (creaking)
– Oh it’s musical. – (laughing) It’s a bit squeaky. – This is cute! It’s got a really cute
little sweet frontage. – [Michael] I’m not sure about the corrugated iron, it’s a bit jarring. – How’s the door?
(laughing) Gotta salvage that. How amazing is that cornice? – It’s not very big. – Old homes weren’t big, it was, you know, compact. Look at this cornice! – There is a lot of work
in that cornice, I reckon. – It’s amazing! We actually really love
a home with history. If you’ve got beautiful bones and you’ve got those really interesting decorative features, you have
to salvage them where you can. This house is loaded in
character and personality. And I reckon, has a lot of
potential for a renovation. But I think it’s a little bit compact. (military drumbeat)
(sharply inhaling) – Oh dear. – Rebuild.
– What a disaster if you’re trying to renovate this. Looks like an outside toilet. – [Norm] Tiny, what do you do with that? We rebuild, we make it bigger. – [Jess] Shall we go in? – Let’s go in.
– Can’t get any worse. – Let’s go in, oh it could. She’s old, hon, she’s old. – It’s cute, but I don’t
think it’s saveable. God, Michael and Carlene are
gonna have to pull something out of a hat, I think we’ve got this. – They’re dreaming. – They are absolutely dreaming! (laughing) – First thing I noticed
was the size of the house. – It’d be easy to clean ’cause there’s not much of it to clean. – No it was only about four square meters all that to clean.
– It’s a shame that we can’t keep this, the
detail of this is gorgeous. For the price that it’s gonna cost to get up to scratch, you wouldn’t bother. – No, let’s modernize this bad boy. – Yep, let’s give this family the house that they deserve. – Yep, knock it down.
– Knock ‘er down! (vocalizing) (laughing) – [Josh] Well it looks
like they both think they know what’s best for this house. Coming up, the team meet the owners. – We think it’s renovation all the way. – [Josh] And the competition
is set to explode. – Well there is no doubt that this house is in need of some work,
but we think it still has plenty of charm, making
it ripe for a renovation. – And we’d love to know
what you guys think so please leave a comment below and if you’re after some exclusive content please jump on the website
renovateorrebuild.com.au. – [Josh] The teams have
walked through the home and given us their first impressions. And it sounds like they
don’t agree on everything. – This is cute! – Oh dear.
– But there was one thing that caught both their attention. – What about the view though?
– Yeah. – You wouldn’t know that from the street the view that you’ve got out the back of this property is amazing.
– Is that the ocean? – Well–
(gasping) It’s either that or a little dam ’cause you can’t see much of it. – I know! – That building next door’s in the road. – I think the best use
of this property would be to renovate what’s here, build
an extension out the back that’s gonna take advantage
of all these views. – I bet you Michael and Carlene would wanna renovate out to the boundary of the other house so that
they can get that view. But why would you do that? Why wouldn’t you just rebuild
in the middle of the yard so that nearly every room in the house could have that beautiful view? – I mean there’s no good
reason to knock this down and start again, you’ve
got a solid building. You just need to capitalize on it. – Brand new house, couple’a beers, looking at the view, just
living your best life. – And house there to house here, I reckon here would nearly
double the price of the house. – Then, we build a granny flat up there so that, say if they ever
get in trouble with money or if they need to offset
their mortgage or anything, you’ve got an income stream coming from one side of the property. – Time for the teams to meet the family they are designing for.
(hip hop music) Well guys, you’ve got some
serious skills in the room. – We’ve watched the block. We know they’ve got lots of
enthusiasm and experience. – We’ve got Michael and
Carlene from Team Reno and Jess and Norm from team rebuild. Let’s hear first what
Team Reno have got to say. – Yeah we think this house has an amazing amount of character. Walking through, you guys
have done a great job with your interim
renovation that you’ve done. And we think it’d be great to try and keep some of that character in the build and, despite what Norm and Jess might say, (laughing)
we think it’s renovation all the way. – I’m loving this competition already. (laughing)
– Yeah. – How ’bout Team Rebuild?
– OK, we appreciate what Team Reno said, but I
think don’t listen to them, don’t be silly.
(laughing) So you’ve already had a
crack at the renovations, you’ve already seen what
this property can do and it obviously couldn’t
give you what you wanted. You have such an incredible view, if we rebuilt further down your block. And to offset a bit of income, you can have a granny flat at the front so if ever the economic climate goes down you will always have that support in creating that extra income. So we promise you we can
give you everything you want plus a couple of dollars on top of that. – Aye! Saving money with the rebuild.
– Yes we are! Dream team! Why wouldn’t ya? – Well you guys have a
lot of thinking to do and our expert design teams
have a lot of work to do. Should we get this journey started? – Yes!
– Let’s do it. – Let’s go!
(applauding) – [Josh] So, how do the teams
feel their initial pitch went? – I think Steve and Ali were
very receptive to our ideas in terms of renovating
as opposed to rebuilding. – We want the house to be super livable and affordable as well. – One point, especially when we’re talking about the granny flat, I saw his wife go, “that’s what we wanted.” – Ali are you leaning
towards anyone in particular at this point?
– It’s hard to say without seeing their designs. I’m sure they’ll both be great. – Now I guess it’s our job
to get something together to really put ’em over the line. Norm and Jess are probably gonna come up with something impressive
so we need to step it up and hopefully we’re the winners. (mumbling, laughing) – Ah sorry! Bit ‘o to-and-fro at the front door just to let ’em know who’s king. See that door mate? That’s the last time you’re gonna see it. – You’re dreaming!
– I think Norm and Jess mean business, you know
they’re a great couple but I’ve got a slight feeling that they’re pretty competitive. – Michael and Carlene
really love this house. So that’ll be really handy
’cause when we knock it over they can choose whatever they
want to take home with them. (hip hop music)
– Coming up, the teams get to work on their designs. – Demolish that.
– And pitch day is here. With some specialist judges on hand. And one team’s going to miss out. – Michael and Carlene have
smashed it out of the park. Dammit! (laughing) – Poor Michael and Carlene
from Team Renovate. There is no way that they’re
gonna renovate this old shack. But we need your help with our designs to get it across the line! Click on subscribe or like and tell us what you think we should do. – I’m gonna hook this bad girl on the back of my U and
I’m gonna pull it down hon. – (laughing) I don’t want you to. – If you wanna see
exclusive content, log on to – [Both] Renovateorrebuild.com.au. – [Josh] The teams have the brief. Will renovation reign, or rebuild prevail? It’s time to get designing. – When you look at this
space, it’s crazy to think that Norm and Jess want to bowl it down. So that’s the existing part of the house. If we then go and put an
extension on the back of it and build to the edge of
the building envelope, we’ll still be able to get
those sea views and breezes. – Which is the whole idea. So we can achieve that with a renovation without having to bulldoze
what’s currently there. – The old existing house
is up here, demolish that. We start our new house starting
here and then out here have entertaining.
– Team Renovation looked beyond for inspiration, thinking about some of
their favourite renos. – I think this design sort of exemplifies what architects like Sean
Lokyer do well in Brisbane is celebrating the
original home, lifting it and doing the extension out the back to make it a bit more
conducive to modern living. – I think the key to this job
too is material selection. You know we’ve seen Soleil
Properties do it well. They use sustainable materials
to build high end homes and I think we can do exactly that here. – [Josh] While Team
Rebuild go one step further by checking out one of the latest energy efficient display homes. – Oh wow! We found out that Steve and Ali wanted a healthy, comfortable
and efficient home so we found a seven star home. We’re gonna check it out
to get some inspiration. – Look at all this, soon as you walk in just feels comfortable, doesn’t it? – Yeah! Feels healthy doesn’t it? When you think of energy efficient homes, you expect a bit of straw or
a few spiders or something. This looks beautiful! – It’s a modern day home,
like the modern day home look, and it’s got all the actual features of the seven star ratings. I can’t get over this house, seven star rating for
the price of $240,000. – [Jess] And it’s cool! It’s hot outside but it’s cool in here. – No air cons (mumbling). – And they’re getting
no electricity bills. High efficiency equals low bills, and that’s what we live for, low bills. It’s gonna save them a fortune. 43% of energy bills
are generally wasted on warming and cooling the house. – Judging day has arrived. Both of our teams have
prepared their designs and they’ll be pitching
them to Alison and Stephen because ultimately it’s their choice. Will they Renovate or Rebuild? We’ve gathered at the
University of New South Wales for a head-to-head presentation. Shortly, we’ll get the design pitches from our two teams, and
then it’s judgment time. – We’re hoping to see some innovation that’s hit the brief,
so some ideas we haven’t thought of ourselves
that we can take forward. – Ultimately it will come
down to the owners’ decision. But we have some specialist judges here to provide valuable insights. Zali Reynolds is one of
the top real estate agents in the country, with an eye
for design and functionality. James Treble is a highly
sought after interior designer with his finger on the
pulse of the latest trends and a keen eye on future directions. And yours truly reviewing
energy efficiency and building performance. But let’s not waste any more time, let’s get straight to the design pitches over to Team Renovation.
(cheering, applauding) – The objective of our
design was to create a home that really celebrated
the original structure. – [Josh] Team Renovate’s
design makes the most of the space under the existing house to create a utilities area
to accommodate the laundry, a rainwater tank, battery
and general storage. A new connected ground floor structure built from reverse brick
veneer will extend the house deeper into the block
serving as a rumpus room with a kitchenette and additional toilet. Above this, sitting on a
suspended concrete slab, an open plan kitchen,
dining and living area looks out onto the
expanse of coastal views with window placement and shading devices designed to capture warming winter sun and provide shade in summer. A generous outdoor deck
area links the inside and outside beautifully. The original house gets a major makeover and will be reconfigured internally to include four bedrooms, a study, the main bathroom and an ensuite. The existing and new
buildings are connected by a cleverly designed breezeway corridor ensuring good cross ventilation
to all internal areas capped off with a hip and gabled roof and a six kilowatt solar energy system on the northern side. At the rear of the block,
the design proposes a separate ancillary dwelling, sitting above a two car garage that’s connected to the rear lane. The total construction cost
is an estimated $1.19 million. – I think they have absolutely nailed it. I love the style, the high pitch roofs, the cement, the concrete, the wood. I could move into that living space. I absolutely fell in love with it. – Michael and Carlene have
smashed it out of the park. Dammit! (laughing)
– That’s gonna be hard to top. Now time for Team Rebuild. – Hello! – Thanks for having us here today. We’re sorry you had to go
through that rubbish just before. (laughing) – Let’s how you your future house. – [Josh] Team Rebuild have taken advantage of the deep sloping block
by extending the building along the full length of the property. The ground floor of the western end includes a tandem garage
and a rumpus room, laundry and a bathroom, also built out of reverse
brick veneer walls. Above that on a suspended
polished concrete slab floor is the open plan kitchen,
dining and living room. With a deck looking out onto
uninterrupted coastal views. The windows and veranda design have been carefully considered to maximize natural light and winter sun whilst providing protection
from hot summer sun. Moving back up the property through a connected breezeway
corridor are four bedrooms, a study cum music room, master bedroom, main bathroom, and ensuite. A striking feature of this design is the extensive roof garden
over the middle of the house that will be irrigated from
a large rainwater tank. The flat profile roof
over the main living area will house a six kilowatt
solar energy system and it’s been designed
so as not to interrupt the views from neighboring properties. The granny flat Stephen
and Alison are keen on is located at the front of the property, separate to the main house, but linked via the rooftop garden. The total construction cost
is estimated at $1.39 million. – We love the thought of starting afresh. A completely new place that
we can tailor to our needs. A little bit overwhelmed potentially by the cost elements. – Well there you have it. Two very compelling design presentations. Both responding to the brief
in slightly different ways. It’s now time for us judges to duck away and score which we think
is the best design. But ultimately, the choice
to either rebuild or renovate will be with you. The judges step out to deliberate. – I’m really impressed with the way that they have used the
character of the old home, the flow of the floor plan, the use of the indoor outdoor space, and then obviously the carparking. That’s a huge and really important factor when you’re selling a property. – [Josh] And a great choice in materials. – Yeah really good materials. And I love that big
open beautiful ceiling. It’s just so nice and bright. I reckon that’s a great shot
especially from real estate. – Absolutely, that was
a wow factor for me. Just walking through into that room, I can just imagine is gonna be wow! – The back of the home with
that large vaulted ceiling just opens up to all
of those amazing views and let the room be
flooded with natural light. – Now how about the rebuild option? – I just think that the whole way that they repositioned the
home down into the block was very interesting. That rooftop garden was so beautiful. And I think it’s great for the neighbors. And they would enjoy it as well as long as they enjoy getting
up there and gardening. – That’s a big expensive feature though. – It is, I think it’s
beautiful and really lovely but I’m not a green thumb myself. I just worry, how would we
maintain something like that? – It’s a big cumbersome
build, beautiful design. – Correct.
– Very clever, and again, strong on
the energy efficiency, but there’s a lot of building
there, and a big cost. – Great addition of
having that granny flat. Both of the designs had
that and it’s really good for cross-generational living
or maybe additional income with a B&B rental or something like that. – It could be a close call. – It could be a very close call. – [Josh] Time to hear the judges’ scores. – The score I’m giving on the
renovation in this case is– – Two great designs there. I know who I’m voting for. But which way are you leaning? Click on the poll above and vote for your favorite team. And for exclusive, behind-the-scenes info, go to our website at
renovateorrebuild.com.au. Owners Stephen and Alison’s home in the seaside suburb of
Malabar is ready for change. We’ve had two expert teams
create incredible designs to influence their decision. – They’ve both given a
really lot of thought to the energy efficiency aspect. Other factors that we
really need to consider is the ongoing maintenance,
and most particularly is the mortgage stress. – And just practically
how we see ourselves living in the space,
whether it is something that’s gonna represent us and our family. – [Josh] Now that the
judges have deliberated, the moment has arrived. Which team will win the
Renovate or Rebuild challenge and take out the prize of $1000 to donate to their charity of choice? – I really loved the
renovation for a few reasons. I love the use of the materials. I love that raw use of materials and enjoying them in their natural state. I also loved the idea of
the cross generational living opportunities with the granny flat and that big rumpus downstairs. – [Josh] Overall, James is impressed by this very smart design,
scoring Team Renovate eight out of 10. When looking at Team Rebuild’s design… – I loved key items
about being repositioned further down the block. It’s on that big slop which lets them capture the views but I understand why coming down the block lets you have side vision better as well and gives you that beautiful air flow. I think with all of this in mind and the usability of both homes together, I’m gonna give it a seven
and a half out of 10. – Half a point less
than Michael and Carlene from the design aspect,
what else did he want? – [Josh] Moving on to Zali’s thoughts now, starting with Team Renovate. – I really liked the
character of the renovation. I think from a salability point of view, the character is gonna hold
true throughout the years. Whereas as we know,
modern homes can change and trends can change. The vaulted ceilings in
the back room and the view, that is your money shot. That is the shot that we would use to sell any property, so
I really love that room. – [Josh] Zali scores Team
Renovate eight out of 10. With Team Rebuild’s design, Zali is impressed with the floor plan. – It’s a really different design. It’s not something we would see or have available for sale everyday. So I think it’s a really unique property. – However, Zali is concerned
about privacy issues that will come up when moving the home further down the block. She also thinks the rooftop
garden could be a drawback from a sale standpoint, as a lot of buyers won’t be keen gardeners. With all this in mind, Zali
has scored Team Rebuild seven out of 10. It looks like it will
come down to my scores, so here we go. Team Rebuild’s design was
certainly spectacular. But, it’s a bit pricey, and
will be a big job to undertake. The rooftop garden I think is fantastic, and something we should
be seeing a lot more of. I’m a little bit concerned about the scale of the building. And with Steve and Alison’s brief in mind, I’m not convinced it’s the best fit. However, from an energy
efficiency standpoint, there are some great considerations. Good solar passive design,
good cross-ventilation, and solar energy generation. With all of this in mind,
I score Team Rebuild seven and a half out of 10,
taking their total to 22. I’ve gotta say, I was really taken by the renovation design. Clearly, really good considerations around the thermal performance of the new part of the house. But also how the engineering and moisture management
issues on the front house have been considered as well. So add to that the fact
that they’re thinking an all-electric home, that can largely run off its own solar system with
the inclusion of batteries if need be to further utilize that low costal free energy, big ticks from me. I’m scoring it eight out of 10. – Yeah! – I’m happy! I mean it’s a good result to know that we’ve got the judges’ confidence. – [Josh] But it doesn’t end here. The judges scores are not
final in this competition. It all comes down to Steve and Alison. – We really liked both of your designs, but if we’re completely honest, the style and the nature of the design of the Renovate Team appealed to us more. (cheering) That’s not to say that
our scores are necessarily gonna reflect that, there
are things about our house that we feel potentially just aren’t worth that
level of investment. – So we’re torn because
they’re both fantastic, we love the people, we love
the effort they put in. Ultimately we’ve given the Renovate eight and a half out of 10, and the knock down rebuild nine out of 10. (cheering) (laughing) – [Josh] Well there you have it. Team Rebuild prevailed, this time. We’re back at Stephen and Alison’s house to present to them a very special treat. The winning team’s
design has been developed into virtual reality, and
we’re here to show the family exactly what the house
will look and feel like as they walk through the finished design. – Wow, it’s so realistic isn’t it? It’s amazing technology. It’s great to be transported into what could be our future home. – It’s amazing, your reality got mixed up with where you were to where
you were viewing the house. I felt like I was inside the house. – You were. (hip hop music) – [Josh] And for Team
Rebuild, they get to make a special donation to their chosen charity the Aberdare Primary School in Kenya. – By winning the challenge,
we’re able to donate $1000 to our selected charity!
– Yeah! – Fantastic opportunity, two great teams, four great people, wealth of ideas. – Now the owners have their design, and now the journey begins, the build. Well there you have it. Norm and Jess have come out on top. This time the idea of a
new house was too much for them to pass up, but
did they get it right? Jump on our website and
let us know what you think. And we’ll see you next time
on Renovate or Rebuild. (hip hop music) We hope you’ve enjoyed the program. What a rollercoaster ride! I thought that Team Renovate
had it in the bag for sure. Click on the subscribe button below to be kept up to date and
see what happens next. Also, jump onto our website
at renovateorrebuild.com.au. And please, leave a comment. We want to know what you think.

32 thoughts on “Renovate or Rebuild Episode 1 – Family Cottage Renovation Design and New Home Design in Malabar NSW”

  1. Yes like the person below renovate would have been my choice as would like to have a bit of green space instead of a roof garden. But sure it would still be lovely. More trees would be good too – love my trees!

  2. Both good design and prefer the reno design a bit more. Love the whole comfort and natural lighting narrative!

  3. Disappointed it does not appear that they have used an Accredited assessor as the Energy Rating Logo is not the NatHERS logo.

  4. I choose the house that Norm and Jess visit. It looks really nice, and less than a quarter of the cost of the other designs!

  5. The VR is so cool, id love to be able to walk around each place in VR and compare them subjectively based on that experience. I wonder if it would sway my initial opinion.
    Cool show, look forward to the next episode ✌

  6. Like the idea of the comp. For educational purposes, episodes should provide greater detail on energy efficiency and renewable energy aspects including ratings.

  7. Great information for anyone who is looking to do any building work. Love both designs – it'd be so hard to choose. Great use of orientation and natural light and the materials are fab!

  8. Nice idea for a show which highlights the pros and cons of such a big decision. I am disappointed though that there was not much focus on the natural landscape within the block and no mention of promoting the value of green space for its biodiversity or for its water management or cooling properties. The rebuild occupies the whole lot size and unless the green roof is intensive, leaves no space for trees or for the kids to run around outside.

  9. Interesting concept with a lot of potential. I am sure many would watch on free to air TV. What I would like to see is more debate about pros and cons. This particular episode seem to be highlighting that more is better. hope to see similar examples in suburbs with smaller budget.

  10. I would have chosen renovate too! Also means less waste from demolition. Although i love the rebuild couple haha very entertaining! Cool idea to consider and compare different building strategies.

  11. Love the reno design. Would be interesting to know what additional items could have brought the judges scores up to 10.

  12. I was wondering if you explored using the PHPP modelling under the Passiv Haus standard as a tool for decision making?
    I have notice many people want to have better buildings but as soon as the appearance of greenwashing appears they duck for cover under guise of potential cost impacts.  I have found that the PHPP software which automatically provides scientifically supported levels of indoor health and comfort also provides quantitative values of cost impacts which the owner should consider. 
     It very clearly and easily helps during the design phase and in real time how much the place will cost to heat and cool, how much energy ($$$) will be required.  How to accurately size the heating and cooling systems (if needed) and the influence of decisions like where the windows are placed, how much shading is required and the direct impact they would have on comfort and heating / cooling costs.  
    It avoids the greenwashing terms and often anecdotal evidence from Passive solar / cross ventilation etc and just gives people the ability to compare Option A, B or C and then they can make the decision that suits them best.   As a tool to help people make accurate decisions about their greatest expenditure the Passive House modelling is a great tool.  Keep going with the awesome work.

  13. This is a great concept and I’m really pleased to see sustainability going mainstream on tv in a way consumers can understand. I’d like the design process to have more input from architects, who are best placed to weigh up all the competing demands in complex projects, and also would have liked both teams to hit the budget in terms of their proposals… $1.4 is a very different prospect to the $1m budget the family stipulated at the beginning. Others have mentioned the need to discuss other issues such as embodied energy / waste in the knockdown; landscape and biodiversity; and a desire to find out more about energy ratings and how these efficient methods will impact annual bills, etc. making big savings on utility bills could help them pay off their mortgage sooner! I’d love to see this go to a one-hour format to include some of those extra details. Great job on the pilot, it will be fantastic to see the next episodes!

  14. Rebuild feels way overbuilt, like a mini apartment complex. Feels like more of a push and shove for the view. Renovate all the way, keeping an area for some green space and a potential veggie patch!

  15. Will there be a revisit episode when the works are complete? It would be good to see the final product, instead of only a simulation.

  16. renovate appealed allowing the home owners to retain what they loved about the original house but incorporated all the features they were looking for, the knock down rebuild didn't retain the warmth and great features although it did have the energy efficiency, it lacked personality

  17. Great show! I liked team renovates design better. I would have liked to known a bit more about how they fixed up the old structure to make it more efficient.

  18. Well done on a great show. Trying to mainstream sustainability/low carbon/health & wellbeing/energy efficiency is always going to be a big call – I've been involved for over 25 years and am still bewildered by policy makers who ignore technology, ie you can still use a paperbased system in QLD and have a 5 Star home accepted when we know a 7.5 Star home can be Net Zero Energy, and we have computer modelling that's been developed over the past 25 years! I would've liked to hear more about materials, energy performance levels (actually see the graphs of how the two different designs would perform throughout the year, although Malabar is a fairly benign climate), and both designs appeared to have impacted the neighbours' view. Looking forward to how it all pans out.

  19. Just had another thought: building a house in Sydney costs anywhere between $1600 (low end project home builder) and $5300 (upper end architect designed), and since the averaged size house is 250 sqm, then realistically this above average sized family of four (LGA av for Sydney is 1.8 pers), should easily be able to fit in a 264 – 875 sq m McMansion given the budgets of $1.1 – 1.4. Am I missing something here? Whatever happened to the renovate the existing place and use it as an income stream and then build a new place further down the block with better views and still have change from $1m? Seems like an oversell by the architects, neither of whom actually responded to the "limited" budget as expressed by the clients. I'd sack them all and find someone who can actually deliver what was asked for, since it's the clients' future home, not some monument to extending families beyond their means for someone else's self-edification (pun intended). Now that might make interesting television, not like those other "reality" tv building shows.

  20. With values around $2m in the area I can see why there is a $1m budget. But bespoke architectural houses are at the premium end of the market. In a rennovate vs rebuild scenario the focus is normally a custom rebuild as high cost per new sqm vs knockdown and choose an off the shelf design at low cost per total sqm. More common budgets will be under $500k. Perhaps future episodes will be more realistic. I'd like to see them aim for EER 8&9, EER 7 is pretty easy to meet.
    I personally preferred the rennovation idea. It left real green space on the block and provided options for future work, perhaps with an elevated garden connection between the granny and the main house.
    Augmented reality will be mainstream in 10 years.

  21. Great job for creating this episode! I would have chosen the renovate design – it captures the character of the existing home and allows more space to create your own garden of edible and native species. The rebuild design seems to be such a large area for only four people!
    The granny flat can potentially be used to downsize when the couple's children grow up and move out of home.

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