Renovation Begins - Some Before Photos
This is the little brick house that we have started renovating...
We have ripped out the bathroom including the walls which were mouldy.
There were different colours in different rooms and mould on most walls, so one of the first things we did was spray every wall and ceiling with vinegar and water solution, then wiped off well with clean sponges and repeated in places if needed. This did remove the mould. We then painted with Ecolour paint, a Non toxic environmentally friendly and locally made paint.
To this we added an anti mould paste recommended by Ecolour. We are confident of keeping that mould out of the house now.
The paint colour we choose was Resene quarter Bianca. I am happy with this white, we have no natural light coming inside due to large verandahs so it is brightening but warm (photos to come).
This kitchen is too cramped for how we like to live so we have pulled the wall out (on the left) and will rebuild the cabinets and make a new concrete benchtop and add a bifold window to open to the outdoor entertaining area which will have a diy clay oven and teppanyaki grill plate BBQ (oneday).
The lounge below was also cramped because of small bedroom near the front door, so this was removed also, which lets in so much more light.
The floors are cold, old dirty grout tiles, so we have gone with laminate, which is in budget. I was wanting a Scandinavian whitewashed oak look, however we don't have as much choice in Australia as they do in Europe, so had to settle for the closest I could get. Laminates are better now in terms of VOC levels and some use mostly sustainably sourced and recycled materials.
There are more environmentally friendly options for flooring if you have the money to spend, however for a fairly low allergy, easy to keep clean option we choose laminated timber.
Our roof is tin and had no sarking or insulation at all. Moisture was a problem and inside was would have been cold if we didn't have a fire and extremely hot in summer. After some research I picked Green Insulation Reflecta-Guard foil insulation, a locally QLD made eco friendly product and since we have had it installed it has made a difference to inside temperatures already. We will also paint the roof a lighter colour to reflect the summer sun at a later stage.
Ceiling fans have been installed because we will not be using airconditioners and LED down lights in the ceiling to reduce energy use.
We have septic tanks, they are old and we need to look at these. We also have tank water, three plastic ones, which we need to look at, do they have filters? is the pump energy efficient?
Our hot water is electric, so that needs looking at also.
Unfortunately (and fortunately) we have many tall native trees that shade our roof, which doesn't face North, so solar is not the best alternative for reducing our electricity bill.
Many more things need doing...better get back to work I guess.