Often when choosing a residential option, too much emphasis is given to size at the expense of design quality. When placed in the hands of a capable design architect, the latter delivers many more benefits, including liveability and sustainability, according to Archicentre Australia.
As the challenge of home ownership becomes more out of reach for those Australians who aspire to this seemingly natural entitlement, the option of smaller residences on smaller blocks becomes a viable alternative.
“This should not be seen as a compromise owing to price constraints, rather an opportunity to create a comfortable, enjoyable, safe, healthy and sustainable living environment,” Archicentre Australia director Peter Georgiev says.
“And this is made possible by utilising the design expertise and experience of a community-based architect, such as those associated with Archicentre Australia.
He says living close to the centre of cities and towns has strong appeal in terms of accessibility and commuting, but the cost of doing so has increased to the point where most people can no longer afford it.
This forces people to seek more affordable alternatives in suburbs much further away from the CBD particularly for those wanting the traditional Australian residential option of a home on a decent sized block of land.
“The compromise of this is living much further away from all the conveniences and the lifestyle options that most people enjoy, including social engagement, dining preferences, cultural events and major sports.
“This has a large impost on liveability, not to mention adding greatly to the daily commute, thereby impinging on family time.”
Peter Georgiev says it is time for all Australians to think outside the box when it comes to the residential options that have become the norm.
“Of course, this also means that planning authorities at local and state levels must act to make these options available to prevent the urban sprawl that has become a major issue in larger cities and towns throughout the country.
“In far too many parts areas of Australia, the opportunity of living in smaller, or even tiny, homes on small blocks is just not possible owing to restrictive planning regulations at local and even statewide levels,” he says.
The Archicentre Australia director says there is no such thing as too small when quality design is utilised to address actual living needs.
“While more appropriate planning regulations are needed, it is also important to have tighter controls over who can build smaller homes to ensure that they meet building codes – e.g. noise, fire separation and thermal performance – and particularly meet design standards.
“Engaging with a community-based architect is the best way to ensure that a smaller home can suit the individual requirements of the occupants.
“Consumers are finding out that a volume-based approach does not work as the living spaces are not tailored to individual requirements with lifestyle preferences not taken into account.”
Peter Georgiev says the theory put forward by many volume builders is that ‘dumb space’ captivates consumers at the cost of carefully considered and basic construction techniques. “This is often about stage set, papier mache fit-outs.”
“Archicentre Australia architects listen to clients and inform them on an independent basis, rather than on a basis of spin. They are likely to propose what is sensible, realistic and above all, of an acceptable and affordable standard.
He says smaller houses are an attractive and more affordable solution to the dilemma of housing shortages in most major Australian cities and towns but this is not a reason to compromise on lifestyle quality.
“Small homes should be of a high-quality while also fulfilling the social, environmental and economic benefits they offer,” he adds.
“Combining housing and urban solutions for young, singles, elderly and families is an essential part of where Australia needs to go in the residential sphere and not just in the major cities. Well considered and qualitative design solutions can be driven by adopting an architectural approach.”
For more information go to www.archicentreaustralia.com.au
This media release has been written and distributed by:
Peter Georgiev, Director
Level 1, 9 Strathalbyn Street,
Kew East, VICTORIA, 3102
Phone: 1300 13 45 13 | 03 9859 9950