Mar 24, 2008 10:06 pm
I'm always interested in what people really desire with, or around, their new homes. Obviously some are in a better position than others to build their ultimate dream home, and I'm not writing this to instigate a 'mines-bigger-than-yours' war, or a city-vs-country thing, or even a blokes-vs-sheilas debate. But since I appear to be one of the few country people here, I'm curious to know exactly what it is that suburban people would get with their homes 'If-only-they-could.'
My admittedly less than knowledgeable impression is that most suburban blocks of land are less than 600m2 in size. All one has to do is drive down Clyde Rd, or around Lakeside estate, and see nothing but a sea of roofs with not much space in between. I know for fact though that most people have no real choice in the size of block to buy, and I sympathise.
So I've decided to have a go at running a poll.
Which is more desirable, having a large block of land that not only will accommodate a separate double garage but also large shade trees and room for a game of backyard cricket, OR a dream home that almost fills a small block but with every conceivable option and luxury?
Myself, well, we're building with M, but it is one of their M1 basic range homes with some options. We'd luuuurve one of their Signature series homes, or even something like an NSD with all the trappings, but can't justify or afford it. And even though we have a comparitively large block, the back yard will probably never have everything in it that it should. Compromise city here! Our problem is not lack of choice with block size, but lack of resale value of our existing home in order to finance the new home.
Geoff - Decophile.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?2
Mar 24, 2008 10:21 pm
I currently live in a modest house (90 sq.m + single garage, on 750 sq.m block). I have another property (small house on a 700sq.m block), that I plan to demolish and build two homes on it.
Whilst I "enjoy" the house I live in (ie decent backyard, etc), I find that I have little time to look after it. My new house (moving hopefully sometime in 2009), will be somewhat larger but the gardens will be a lot smaller.
I still remember 15 years ago, 600 sq.m block was "small". Big backyard was the in-thing, esp with the older generation. These days, I mostly hear about people who do not have time to look after their gardens (except for the very keen gardeners). My opinion anyway.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?3
Mar 24, 2008 10:30 pm
We have an apartment in the centre of Melbourne, and a house on a big block in the western suburbs, and we chose the big block, purely because of our kids.
But if we didn't have kids, there'd be no competition. Especially if I could have a dream house with everything I wanted inside.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?4
Mar 24, 2008 10:59 pm
Hi Eager ( go Doggies )
For us it is all about the location, not land size.
We have a smallish block but our back garden is a river and protected parklands, trees, native birds, the lot. It has never been about the size of the block but the space and views around it.
Cheron Butch race 6
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?5
Mar 25, 2008 12:03 am
Hi, we had a 'relatively' small budget so had to make several compromises.
Firstly, with the land, we got a very small block BUT in a new development with lots of parks, cycle ways, etc. and only two houses back from a large (and permanent) bushpark - so hopefully these features will make up for the small yard.
(I grew up in a house with a small backyard that was next to a park and thought it was great - it felt like I had my own private playground!)
Secondly, with the house, we went for quality over quantity. We are building a smallish two-storey (18sqm) house with a custom builder rather than a bigger cheaper one with a project builder - in part because of this forum.
Given some of the horror stories we had read combined with our own lack of building knowledge we decided to seek out a builder with a very strong reputation for our own peace of mind . Of course, you pay more for these types of builders hence (because of our budget constraints) we had to reduce the number of squares (we would have loved just one more room for a study).
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?6
Mar 25, 2008 12:16 am
Land size is obviously relative, we are downsizing block wise from over 1000m to 707m2, but I realise by city standards 707m would still be considered quite large. Our new house will only be medium size (166m2 living plus double garage) but that's big enough for us with only 1 child still at home and will still leave a generous yard size for pergola, shed and open garden area. Not sure of the size of our current house but I estimate it is almost the size of new one but much older, nearly 50 years old.
I am in a country town in SA.
Chris, I find the "not enough time" for a garden interesting, I think it is more a matter of priorities, I, for example, don't have "enough time" to watch much TV or movies, therefore wouldn't bother with a home theatre, others wouldn't bother with a garden.
So, in answer to the poll question, I don't think it is an either/or choice but a matter of finding the right balance (within budgetary restrcitons) to suit your lifestyle.
typical South Australian - can't even give a straight answer to a simple question
By the way, Latrobe Valley - that is in country Victoria?
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?7
Mar 25, 2008 4:15 am
I choose big block..if only we had the money! I would prefer big block over dream house anyday.
I grew up on a huge block of land and I mean huge.... our block of 680sq, would go into the land I grew up on, at least 80x. So from one to another is a huge step-down.
I would give anything somedays, to have that land back, to have the animals I want, grow the fruit/vegetables I want without having to worry if there is enough room or if it will annoy the neighbours. Can you imagine what the neighbours would do with a rooster crowing at dawn, or trying to keep a horse in a back yard the size of a toilet. (I am working on trying to get a mini horse, DH is not coming to the party! ).
I wouldnt want to buy a block the size that I grew up on, land even 1/4 of that size here, is a million or more, but my dream land would be big enough to have some farm animals, fruit trees, vegetables and peace and quiet.
Ohhh I guess a bonus with a big block is I can yell at the kids *cough*terrors*cough* without all the neighbours coming out to see if someone is being murdered nearly every day
The above is just my preference as I know that DH hates having a big block (acreage) *whos going to mow* is his main complaint. I am not sure what the kids would do with a large block either, they have a decent back yard now, as well as a large park over the road, but where do they spend most of their time? Not outside. So their preference would be dream house on smallish block.
Now that we are going to build, guess who won? Well not me! We have bought a small block (540sq) and are building a largeish home (although it is not going to have all the mod-cons, it will have all the rooms we need and takes up most of the land), I am just worried about the neighbours and my need to yell often at the children I feel sorry for them already!!
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?8
Mar 25, 2008 8:11 am
We went from 555m to 950m. The house on 950 is bigger, but the huge garage is under it - leaving more land!
Initially I thought it would be great. Moved in during winter, and it was. Then spring hit, and instead of 3 hours to do the lawn at the old place, it took 6, every weekend.....and had 3 times the amount of grass clippings that could fit in the grass bin! I even considered budgeting $2000 for a ride-on.
So we split the backyard in 2. We have the 'prim & proper' section, which we keep the lawn & gardens perfect in. Then there's the 'rough bit' where I mow it without the catcher (the grass bin is full just on the small bit of front lawn, plus the 'good' backyard). The "rough bit" will eventually have a 4 car garage on it, and still have a lot of remaining space - I calculated (on paper) 16 car spots if you park them in fairly tight, but there's no way in hell I could fill them without a divorce!
I've got the lawns down to 4 hours now. Our new strategy is to "eat into" the grass areas with gardens, mulched heavily, planted with natives for very low maintenance.
I would still prefer the big yard. You can always extend the house into it later if you need more room as the family grows.
There's also nothing better than having it all fenced in, and letting friends & rello's kids run freely, kick a ball, play hide & seek etc, without fear of them running onto a road, or in a park with strangers.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?10
Mar 25, 2008 9:35 am
Big land for us! We'd rather have a big space for backyard cricket (I'm thinking of making enquires about a "drop in" pitch for summers ) and room to have big trees, cubby houses, fruit trees & veggie garden.
After 4 years - we're in!
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?11
Mar 25, 2008 9:55 am
For me/us it's about the 'now'. We're of the opinion that what we want and/or need now might not be what we want/need in 5 years time.
So, our current needs are location (in relation to the city), price and layout/features of the house. Not overly fussed about the size of the land (as long as there's decent amount of space for a bbq and outside living etc.) because we aren't much of gardeners anyway.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?12
Mar 25, 2008 11:40 am
My vote would have to be for dream home. I am the world's worst gardener (I managed to kill a catcus for god's sake ). I also work long hours most days and won't have an over abundance of time to do too much gardening.
My block is only 320m2 which will enable a small garden in the front and rear which should be manageable.
Building with DFH - carpet installed!
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?13
Mar 25, 2008 11:53 am
Our block is only 375m2!!!
It wasn't really a choice of land or dream home for us, we are getting neither! We live in a very expensive area (Sydneys Northern Beaches) and a house on a normal size block would have been way over our ($600k) budget.
As it is we have moved to a suburb that is hardly even considered Northern Beaches (Terrey Hills) but our priority was to have a house that was big enough for our family and not too far from friends and family.
We will have a very small yard down the side of our house, about 6 metres wide, and we have a 6 metre rear setback so not much but we think it will be enough since we currently live in a unit and get by.
Our house is also very small but has everything we need, three living areas, three bedrooms, study etc. Each of these rooms on the small size though!!
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?14
Mar 25, 2008 12:17 pm
We sold our house on an acerage to build our dream home we still miss it and hope that we,ve done the right thing
We would have loved to have stayed where we were,but decided if we wanted our ideal house then it was now of never!
We have bought a block of land further out in the country(we already live in a country town) the block is about 1100 m2,which is quite big but as I love gardening and having animals etc. I,m not too sure how it,s going to work out
Our neighbours all seem really nice and don,t seem to have any objections to us having our chooks (and rooster ) etc.
So we would definetely have prefered to have bought some acres to build our house on but this way we won,t have to borrow any money and we really hope that we will have the house of our dreams....
Building on 9 acres
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?15
Mar 25, 2008 1:43 pm
Sport is very important in my family, so need the room for backyard cricket etc etc. I grew up on a farm, so even our 9.5 acre (38,000sqm) block now in country SA is too small for me - but I'm adapting and know that I'm lucky, cos as Helyn said, 700sqm is becoming the average in the country which seems small to us, but know it's big by city people's standards.
I just go out to mum and dad's and wander the paddocks when I am feeling suffocated!
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?18
Mar 25, 2008 9:21 pm
Big Land and views - versus dream houses.
Cant even imagine how stir crazy I'd go living in wall to wall fences and roof lines.
It's all about connecting with nature whilst still in your secure and comfortable home environment.
Way to many people have lost sight of this IMO.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?19
Mar 25, 2008 11:21 pm
we've had the large block and have downsized twice to our current block of 450 sqm.
It was great having a big block but it took all our free time gardening to keep it in shape. Given our current lifestyle the dream home is hands down a winner.
Re: Poll: Which is more desirable?20
Mar 25, 2008 11:26 pm
OH THE AGONY......
Who asked the damn question!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I want it all..
I want a big house and a big block and a massive home theatre and a games room and a quadruple garage and somewhere for the kids with their motorbikes and ponies and a dirt bike track and it needs to 5 minutes from my closest shopping centre with all the amenities close not more than 30 minutes drive to the airport to pick up the mother in law and the zoo and the penguins should be close too as we don't like travelling too far in the SUV as its not so good for the environment and the beach needs to accessible by tram and I want to be able to walk to all the local nightlife and........................
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