FIRE ESCAPE PLAN page 2
A-Z OF BANK LOANS page 5
REWARDING RE-WOOD pages 41
VOLUME 6 2012
B U I L D I N G R E N O VAT I N G L I F E S T Y L E
LOCAL COUNCILS IN THE MONARO & SNOWY MOUNTAINS
Cooma Monaro Shire Council Council Chambers 81 Commissioner St, Cooma Ph: 6450 1777, Fax: 6450 1799 E: firstname.lastname@example.org www.cooma.nsw.gov.au
Edition 6, 2012
Home fire escape plan checklist when developing your escape plan Every home and workplace should have a fire escape plan. Accidental home fires Of the 144 home fatalities caused by fire by their very nature can catch people that have occurred in NSW between 2000 unawares. and June 2005, the NSW Fire Brigades Fire Without an escape plan you are placing Investigation and Research Unit advise your life and your families’ lives in jeopardy. that based on case study research, For a safer home regularly practice the approximately one third to half those following escape tips: fatalities MAY have been prevented if the • Know two safe ways out of every room people concerned had, and had practised Draw your escape plan on paper and a home escape plan. (Statistics correct as discuss your escape plan with your family of 24/08/05) • As you escape make sure you Fire safety tips close internal doors behind you Decide on a safe outside meeting place • Remember that smoke from a fire will eg. Near the letterbox make you confused and that you • Make sure that your windows and doors can quickly open if and when required Install smoke alarms: test them regularly and change the batteries at least every year
• Smoke alarms can alert you to a fire, an escape plan can then help get you out alive • Practise your escape plan regularly with all your family members / householders • If there is a fire in your home, do not wait, EVERY SECOND COUNTS, escape immediately and then call 000 from a neighbours home • Once you get out, STAY OUT, never go back inside a burning building • Remember to consider the special needs of children, the elderly or the disabled
Bombala Council Council Chambers 17 Caveat St, Bombala Ph: 6458 3555, Fax: 6458 3777 E: email@example.com www.bombala.nsw.gov.au
cannot see in smoke • When asleep you will not smell smoke and it will in fact put you into a deeper sleep • Oil, gas or wood heating units may require a yearly maintenance check • Only ever use fuses of the recommended rating and install an electrical safety switch • Home fire safety is important for the whole family and preparation can prevent a tragedy
Remember, in case of an emergency Dial 000
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B U I L D I N G R E N O VAT I N G L I F E S T Y L E Monaro Media Group, producers of the Monaro’s only independently owned and produced newspaper, The Monaro Post, is proud to bring to you their sixth publication of their annual “Innovation” magazine. Innovation has been established to help you with all your building, renovating and lifestyle requirements, however, this year a focus has been implemented on the use of energy efficient sources and environmentally friendly initiatives. You will find information on topics ranging from bank loans and fire safety, tradesmen and landscaping suppliers, to more interior orientated information. So please, enjoy edition six of Innovation – a guide to all your building, renovation and lifestyle needs across Cooma-Monaro, Bombala, the Snowy Mountains and Queanbeyan.
The Innovation Team Editorial:
Gail Eastaway Lisa Ashurst Beth Cole Tracy Frazer Louise Platts Production:
Brooke Pritchard Kylie Hinton Cathy Wassink
Published by Monaro Media Group Pty Ltd ABN 34 121 288 060 A special thanks to our many editorial and photographic contributors including Archicentre and NSW Government.
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Contents P5 - A-Z of Home Loans P10 - Kitchen Makeover P12 - Renovating Older Homes P15-18 - How a local family renewed an old homestead P20 - NSW Energy Rebates P27 - Stylish Splashbacks P30-33 - Gardening Guide P35 - Hot Water Systems P44 - The Dangers of Electricity
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Edition 6, 2012
A – Z of loan features While there’s no doubt securing a great interest rate on your home loan is vital, loan features are also an important part of the equation.
Whether you’re in the market for a new property or you want to make sure your current loan arrangements are working for you (even if they are with another financial institution), phone 1300 361 761 during business hours and speak to a SERVICE ONE lending specialist who will be happy to help.
When going through the home loan process, there are some fundamental decisions that need to be made in terms of the loan type – fixed or variable interest rate or a combination of both? When making these decisions, the different features available on these types of loans should be taken into consideration as these features can help structure the loans to fit your lifestyle, provide flexibility when you need it and ultimately help you save money. Here’s an A to Z of common home loan features and how they can benefit you: Additional repayments It’s always a good idea to make sure your loan allows for additional repayments (that is, payments that are above the standard repayment for your loan). Making additional repayments against the loan when you can means you will be reducing the total amount of interest paid on your loan and you can potentially reduce your loan term. A redraw facility will enable you to access these extra repayments if you need to.
Package option Some lenders offer packaged options – that is, a bundling of products and services that offer benefits such as discounted loan interest rates. Generally, these packages are better suited for those with large loan balances as an annual fee is associated with these packages, so you should ensure your loan discount (and other benefits) will provide you with savings greater than the cost of the annual fee. Portability
the home loan is going to stretch your resources and you’re unlikely to have significant savings then an offset facility may not be beneficial for you. In this instance, you may be better off with a base variable loan, with a lower interest rate and basic features. Keep in mind that as your financial circumstances change, you should review your loan arrangements and if required, change your loan type and features. Be sure to check with your lender what fees and/or conditions are applicable to change your loan product.
If your loan offers portability, this means you can take your This is a loan type that also acts as home loan with you if you your primary transaction account. The move. Lenders provide this idea is your salary and other income by substituting the security is deposited directly against your details on your loan to your loan, reducing the principal amount new property. This feature owing. Although you will have different can be dependent on payments coming out at different the property zoning and times, the longer your money is left in valuation. SERVICE ONE has been providing quality home the account, the more you’ll be saving loans to residents of the ACT and surrounding on interest. Pay close attention to the NSW for over 50 years. interest rate of these products as they Redraw facility A redraw facility will are generally higher than a standard competitive interest rates variable product because of the extra enable you to access any extra repayments you’ve flexibility they offer. feature packed loan options, including made against the loan. offset, redraw, additional repayments Make sure you’re aware and more Offset facility of any fine print with such option to package your loan with the An offset facility enables you to a facility as lenders can Pioneer Banking Package, providing link savings accounts to your loan enforce a minimum redraw further interest rate discounts and account, allowing you to use the amount and there may other benefits amount of money in these savings be a facility activation fee conditional approval can be accounts as an offset against your and/or ongoing fees for granted quickly upon receipt loan balance. Effectively, the savings each redraw. of your completed application balance in the account is deducted from your loan account before the with a SERVICE ONE home loan you interest on the loan is calculated. As Top-up can take advantage of discounts A top-up feature allows a result, no credit interest is paid on on your everyday banking. the offset account. Make sure you’re you to increase the loan aware of any extra fees to establish amount of an existing and maintain an offset facility on your loan. While a top-up loan (it may incur a monthly charge feature may not seem or you may need a minimum balance that important when you in the savings accounts). Generally, initially take out the loan, significant savings balances are if in five or 10 years time loans | savings | investments | insurance required to demonstrate a large saving you want to renovate, in loan interest. In some instances, you being able to top-up your Apply today. may be better off making additional loan will be convenient as repayments directly against the loan you may be able to use and using redraw to access available the equity in the home to funds. Different lenders may also offer access these extra funds. varying levels of offset – for instance When it comes time for Branches across south-eastern somb.com.au 1300 361 761 some will provide a 100% offset facility you to choose a loan NSW and the ACT. (using 100% of your savings to offset the type and the associated Terms and conditions apply and fees and charges are payable. Loan applications are subject to SERVICE ONE’s standard lending criteria. loan), where as some may only provide features, be realistic about Service One Credit Union Limited operating as SERVICE ONE Members Banking. your needs. If taking out 75% or 50%. All-in-one account
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Edition 6, 2012
What is Colour Zoning? Interior designers understand that the three most crucial elements of any interior are space, lighting and colour. Without considering the empty space in a room and the placement of furnishings and decor within that space, an interior is just a random collection of objects. The most skillfully designed and furnished interior loses its impact if the lighting is not right.
These three need to be considered Even most amateur home renovators understand the importance of together in order to make colour colour in a room, but unfortunately, zoning work. too many opt for the safe option of painting the entire house one neutral How is Colour Zoning Used? colour. An understanding of colour Colour zoning is increasingly zoning can help you make the most of being used to define areas in colour in your home. large commercial settings. A large restaurant, for instance, that includes What is Colour Zoning? a café and a more formal dining Colour zoning is the deliberate area, will be colour zoned to create separation of spaces into atmospheres of casual eating and zones and the assignment of romantic dining respectively. appropriate colours to each zone. We often do this when Interior decorators apply the same painting a girl’s bedroom pink colour zoning theories to home
of the home as well. You may have a modern minimalist living room, but want to create a more earthy, natural ambience in the patio outdoors. Simply choosing natural stone or clay patio pavers in deep earth tones creates that atmosphere even when your patio doors are opened wide and nothing physically separates the living room from the patio. Successful colour zoning can be difficult to achieve. Sometimes, colours can clash or the primary colours used in one area can overwhelm the colours in another.
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and a boy’s bedroom blue, for instance, but colour zoning is a much more sophisticated process. Some of the important aspects of colour zoning include:
interiors. It can work especially well in open plan homes, where the kitchen, dining and living spaces are not separated by walls. You may, for example, want your kitchen to have a lively café-like atmosphere where F unction: you gather around the kitchen island What is the room going to be with friends and family for coffee. used for? Bold splashback colours can help Ambience: create this atmosphere. In the dining What colour or colours create room, you may want a more subdued the right ambience for a ambience. You can achieve this with room? wallpaper in subtle hues and patterns. Visual impact: A feature wall in a bold colour in the Are subtle, neutral colours living room draws the eye to the living called for or would a dramatic area and helps define its ambience. colour scheme be more Colour zoning extends to the outside appropriate?
To get it right, you may want to take advantage of the expertise of a colour consultant. A colour consultation is a collaborative effort, so prepare for your first meeting by creating an Inspiration Board from the thousands of photos in our HI Pages galleries. Who knows? When your colour zoning home improvement project is finished, photos of your interior may end up being an inspiration for others.
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Edition 6, 2012
One in three Aussies fear not making repayments on their homes Confusion in the property market has today been highlighted with 30 percent of Australians admitting they are scared that house prices will rise, whilst 23.4 percent fear them falling. And a frightening one in three Aussies are scared they won’t be able to make repayments on their homes, according to the latest survey by home loan comparison website HomeLoanFinder.com.au. Australians are being urged to fight the fear by arming themselves with a deeper knowledge of the market and comparing home loans to ensure they find the best deal for them. In an answer to the exponential growth in people using their smart phones and apps to their property market research, as well as alleviating confusion in the market for consumers, HomeLoanFinder.com. au has launched the Finder.com.au App, the first ever mobile app in Australia to provide consumers with real time home loan comparison, interest rates, tips and calculators to help people find the best home loan that suits their needs. The survey conducted by HomeLoanFinder.com.au of more than 2,000 people also revealed that 30 percent of Australians said they wouldn’t compare home loans, when taking the leap to buy a property. Jeremy Cabral, Publisher of HomeLoanFinder.com.au says, “Aussies are unaware of the opportunities they miss out on by not comparing the various offers on the market. It is costing them more by not shopping around to get the best deal. By providing live home loan information through the app, savvy consumers can compare loans from different lenders and save themselves tens of thousands of dollars in the process.” Of those surveyed, 47 percent of respondents had downloaded a banking app, and 52.2 percent said they plan to download a banking app in the next 12 months. And 35.2 percent use a mobile app to search for rental property, or to purchase properties, with 74.1 percent carrying out property searches on their smart phones. “Clearly there is growth in the area of app development for banking purposes and consumers are becoming more aware of the most immediate ways they can access
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financial information that can benefit their back pocket. 39.2 percent of people say they are only moderately satisfied with their current banking app. The Finder App will seek to increase consumer satisfaction in this regard,” continues Mr Cabral. The Finder.com.au app is available free from the App Store on iPhone. Finder.com.au is a free financial comparison website group which aims to help consumers make informed choices.
Top tips to make purchasing property less scary If leaving the rental scene to take on the commitment of home ownership seems scary, perhaps it is time to understand the tricks and tips that will help get you home safe and sound. First time property buyers are often spooked by the long term financial obligation of a mortgage, in that it may reign in their way of life. Many are surprised to find their enjoyment of life unchanged or improved. Local Mortgage Choice franchise owner Donna Robson explains a mortgage does not have to put an end to all of life’s luxuries. “It can be easy to lose sight of all the positives. When it comes to the financial commitment of property ownership, too often perpetual renters fear the unknown and lose sight of the end goal,” she said.
Seek help from someone in the know. Reduce the fear by visiting a professional for a step-by-step guide to the mortgage market to help empower you to make the right move.
Help in hunting for a home loan You have your heart set on the ideal property but how do you go about organising finance for it? Deciding on a suitable mortgage can be confusing, stressful and time consuming. It doesn’t have to be! Here are some considerations when choosing a home loan suited to your needs and lifestyle. Shop around and research the mortgage market as much as possible - from the big banks through to smaller lesserknown lenders.
“Taking out and repaying a home loan need not be scary, as long as time is taken to research loan options, know and set borrowing limits, understand short term and long term personal objectives, budget accordingly and thoroughly think through each decision.
Remember to factor in all the costs of a home loan eg. stamp duty, lenders mortgage insurance, application and settlement fees, etc. Make time to investigate all upfront, ongoing and exit fees that may apply, plus other aspects of the loan such as its flexibility, quality of service provided by the lender and more.
“A common fallacy is that there will be no money left over for splurges, outings or special occasions. This can usually be avoided by setting a realistic budget from the beginning, factoring in interest rate rises, borrowing within your means and avoiding unnecessary post-purchase debt. All of this will help ensure there is money left in the kitty.
Be sure to delve into your need for features such as an offset account, redraw facility and ability to make extra repayments.
“Owning property is not for everyone. However, it is often more achievable than people may realise. The decision should only be made after careful consideration of all pros and cons. “Undertaking thorough research while seeking professional knowledge and support can help ensure you make confident, informed decisions. Face your fears and do your homework so you understand the pros and cons of property ownership.” Mortgage Choice suggests these top tips: Do your homework but save time by utilising property and home loan news sites, online forums, social media sites and loan comparison facilities to familiarise yourself with the market, ask questions, compare ideas and gather firsthand accounts of the possibilities, pitfalls and benefits. Start saving now so you don’t feel overwhelmed or in a panic when it comes to building a deposit for your ideal property. Reaching savings milestones can be rewarded with a treat here and there. Practising your repayments makes perfect home loan sense; that way when the time comes there should be no real financial surprise. A professional mortgage broker can help you figure out what your regular repayments would be so you can budget accordingly. Be application ready and have all the necessary documents on hand for your loan application. Documentary evidence such as ID, bank statements, recent pay slips or tax returns, plus written details about assets, liabilities and any other income will all be required.
When it comes to interest rates, try to negotiate a lower rate with your chosen lender - either directly or through your mortgage broker – and remember honeymoon rates may be attractive but they often revert to higher standard variable rates later. There will also be decisions to make about the type of loan you choose. Will it be a principal and interest or an interest only home loan? Are you going to hedge your bets with a variable rate or lock it in for a fixed term, or go for a combination of the two and ‘split’ your loan? A professional mortgage broker can help you compare options from a wide range of lenders and loan products and source a loan that is suited to your long-term property goals. Local Mortgage Choice franchise owner Donna Robson said, “Many working Australians lack the time to visit numerous lenders, however, as a professional mortgage broker I am able to help alleviate the running around by doing the work for you. I know the finance industry well and can easily compare loan types offered by our extensive lending panel including major banks, non-bank lenders and building societies.” “One of the best things about being a Mortgage Choice broker is that I don’t charge customers for my home loan service. And, I’m paid the same commission rate by Mortgage Choice head office no matter what home loan is chosen, meaning I truly work in my customers’ best interests.” Once you have your mortgage, remember to get yourself a ‘home loan health check’ every couple of years at least. The best loan for you now may not be so a couple of years down the track!
Call your local loan broker, Donna Robson, today on 6456 2627
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refinancing your loan
not sure where to start? Choosing the right home loan can be a bit daunting. That’s where we come in. We have access to hundreds of home loan products from our wide panel of lenders. So let’s sit down and compare and contrast them and find the options that suit you. We’ll also help with the paperwork and do all the running around. So talk to us today.
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Edition 6, 2012
Planning a kitchen makeover? preparation, have good lighting, the professionals? sufficient power points, enough space Some people opt to install their own and a good layout that allows you to kitchen and if you are a handy type move freely and have plenty of storage with a good working knowledge of space for appliances and utensils so, if your kitchen falls down in any of these areas, then maybe you should consider A good functional kitchen should a complete makeover. Revamping your tired old kitchen allow you plenty of space for food could be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make, especially if the old design no longer works for you and if it’s done properly, a kitchen renovation can add real value to your home. When it comes to home renovating, kitchens are often the first thing on the list, but they can also be costly so it pays to sit down and think about how big a renovation you have in mind and how much you can afford to spend on it.
professionally or whether you choose to install it yourself, you will still need an electrician and a plumber and they will have their own schedule.
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Kitchens need to be functional and comfortable to work in and to achieve that you need to look at your appliances, lighting, storage space and bench tops. Do you have enough counter space? Are your current appliances in good working order? Is the layout practical?
tools, building and maintenance skills, No doubt you have already you might opt for DIY but regardless of established the flaws if you are which way you decide to go, installing planning a new kitchen so your a new kitchen requires. next decision should be whether Ø careful planning, sizing and to attempt to design and fit your measuring. new kitchen yourself or whether Ø the demolition of your existing you might be better off calling in kitchen plus the removal of unwanted materials. Ø preparation of walls, floors and any plumbing and electrical upgrades. Ø the fitting of the new units and appliances and
If you decide to install it yourself, there are a lot of options as many kitchen companies can supply full kits, which contain everything the home handyperson requires to fully install a brand new kitchen and they have several neat styles and colours to choose from. The downside is that they don’t really allow for flexibility so you will be restricted to the colours styles and materials supplied by the company and they may not be exactly to your taste, which leaves you with the other option; having a professional do it for you from scratch.
Ø the final check on completion to ensure that This may cost you more but in the everything is safe and fully long run you can be assured that operational. the finished result will meet all your So it’s a big job regardless expectations without you having to do and the entire renovation all the work! can be expected to take Kitchen companies can design your anywhere from five to new kitchen to fit your budget, plus eight weeks, but allow they allow you to have some input in yourself a flexible window the all-important planning stages and to cater for any possible many carry a range of accessories delays with deliveries and/ and appliances as well, which can or tradespeople. be incorporated into you new kitchen Whether you have plan. your new kitchen done
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Edition 6, 2012
Create the right look for your home A range of products available locally to create your dream home 1. Ovens from $1600 from Retravision 2. Mitre 10 Cooma Pizza Oven $349 3. Honda Generator from $1899 available from Cooma Power Equipment 4. Liv 4 Home and Kitchen Range of towels from $29.95 5. Hawthorn Red stripe Storage Box $369 available from Cooma Furnishing Co.
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Edition 6, 2012
Trending: renovating older homes According to statistics, construction costs in Australia are the third highest in the world. Combine that with the numbers of Australians who are moving to the inner suburbs and embracing inner city living and you have a trend: renovating older homes. Renovating older homes makes good economic sense at a time when construction costs are high. As a bonus, older homes often have the kind of charm and character only age can provide. All that’s needed
is a little research and commitment spaces can snap up good deals on and an older home can be the best properties in areas that until recently investment you’ve ever made. were considered undesirable. Good examples of these are former worker’s Renovating older homes cottages. Many of these cottages do to live In need plumbing and electrical work, First home buyers, empty-nesters but can be turned into charming and home owners who want to cash homes for first home buyers and in on the equity of their homes are all empty nesters who no longer want or joining the trend towards older homes. need a sprawling home in the suburbs. There are good reasons why: Art Deco homes are in. They can First home buyers and those be found in abundance in most who want to downsize their living urban centres in Australia, often in the inner suburbs with public transport nearby. All the decorative motifs of the era are being reproduced, so whether you need to replace worn Art Deco hardware, wallpaper or any of the other detailing that makes homes from that era so appealing, you can find what you need. If you want to move out of the city, you’re in luck, because pre-1980s houses on large blocks
than prime real estate. Post WWII developments lost their sheen as the housing boom that began in the eighties found home buyers looking for bigger, more modern homes in the outer suburbs. Now, demand for rental properties closer to city centres is growing and investors are often able to make a positive return on their investment and look forward to higher resale value in the near future. Often, all these homes need is a kitchen renovation, a bathroom makeover, new carpets and some paint and they’re as good as new. On larger blocks of land, investors are also building granny flats and getting rental income from both the main home and the granny flat.
of land are bargains in many areas today. For example, according to real estate pundits, family homes on the mid north coast of New South Wales cost a fraction of their equivalents closer to Sydney and the same applies to areas closer to Brisbane, Perth and other major urban centres. The money you save on the purchase price and reduced mortgage can be used to build that swimming pool you’ve been dreaming about for years, but couldn’t afford.
and you like the neighbourhood, you are probably on to a winner, but before you make your final decision, have the property inspected by a professional building surveyor. They will be able to give you advice about all the renovations you may need; not just those on the surface. It’s no use saving money on the purchase price if you have to spend it on necessary renovations. If extensive renovations are needed, consider organising all your tradies before you move in and try to gain access to the property before the final settlement date. Organising the work and having it done before you move in can save thousands of dollars. If you’re going to be renting the house, having the necessary renovations finished quickly means you will be making money on rentals earlier.
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Whether you’re buying an older home to live in or as an investment, find out how much other homes in the area are selling and being rented for. Spend some time in the area and see how it feels to you. If transportation and amenities are within easy reach
Savvy real estate Read more: investors are now finding http://www.homeimprovementpages. opportunity in what used com.au/article/trending_renovating_ to be considered less older_homes#ixzz27RVqmj2k
If your interest is quality... Call us first
• geotechnical engineering
If you have any enquiries please call either Geoff or Timothy on (02) 6452 4699. Ofﬁce: Email: Phone: Mobile:
Renovating older homes for profit
Choosing an older home
153 Commissioner St, Cooma NSW 2630 firstname.lastname@example.org (02) 6452 4699 0414 524 699 (Geoff Bowland) or 0405 318 905 (Timothy Gotts)
Melvin J Salzke Proprietor
31-33 Mulach St PO Box 866 Cooma NSW 2630 E email@example.com P 02 6452 2244 www.rjs.com.au M 0412 384 443 ABN 63 855 143 115 F 02 6452 2231
• Telephone Systems • Telephones – Conference, IP, Long Range Cordless • Computer Networks • Wireless and Internet • Cabling • Security & CCTV • Audio Visual, PA & Music • TV Systems • UPS - Backup Power Systems • Lighting Protection • Consulting • Any technology need
Edition 6, 2012
Why not try induction cooking technology? Have you heard about the Spotlight on Induction latest cooking technology? It’s Cookware called induction and it’s a rather Induction cookware is magnetic, revolutionary way of cooking. Here which allows it to heat up via the we explore induction cookware, electromagnetism. It also has a flat which is used with induction bottom, to allow the cookware to cooktops. connect with the element.
manufacturers may make the When buying cookware for aforementioned cookware with a your induction stove, check the magnetic bottom layer. packaging for a symbol to highlight its compatibility. A quick test is to place a magnet on the bottom of the pan; if it sticks, To clean your cookware, follow you can use it on your induction the manufacturer’s instructions as stove. they may vary from range to range. If
What is Induction Cooking? Induction cooking involves the pot or pan generating heat itself, rather than the heat being transferred to it from a heating element. This is done via electromagnetism, which involves an electromagnetic field being generated from the cooktop.
your cookware isn’t Read more: http://www. induction-compatible, h o m e i m p r o v e m e n t p a g e s . c o m . au/article/what_is_induction_ cookware#ixzz27RWrEXKd
There are many perceived benefits of induction cookware, including: * Safer, as the cooktop doesn’t become hot * In many cases, it’s cheaper than gas or electric cooking * Faster-heating * More energy efficient than other forms of heating
Custom Designed New Residential Homes Induction cookware can be made from iron or cast iron. For this reason, you may be able to use your standard cookware on an induction cooker.
there’s still hope! You can purchase relatively inexpensive devices which convert your old pots and pans to induction.
Additions, Alterations & 3D Presentations and more
These are usually an However, aluminium, glass or interface disc, which copper cookware is unlikely to work * Easy to clean, as there is no heat transform your cookware with induction technology. to cause sticky marks so they can be used on an That being said, some induction surface.
for you to choose from and be inspired by, so you’ll find a design that reflects your personally and budget. Mix ‘n’ match from any of our designs for optimal flexibility. TM
28 Vale Street Cooma
Ph: 6452 1755
Edition 6, 2012
Reducing energy costs in your home Each year the average home in NSW uses approximately: 500 kilowatt hours (kWh) of 7 electricity and 23 gigajoules (GJ) of gas. How much do you use?
1. Reduce the amount of energy you use by changing your usage patterns. 2. Use energy at off-peak times. 3. Use appliances that are more energy efficient. This fact sheet explains how.
• Take advantage of natural air machines. Upgrading of course flows. Open doors and windows costs money, but there are several schemes that offer rebates and loans to encourage cross-ventilation. • Use fans instead of air to help finance such upgrades. See conditioners. Fans are usually 20– the information in the table below. 30 times cheaper to run.
More energy-saving ideas? • Don’t over cool your home. These are just a few suggestions In summer the optimum there are many other ways you can temperature is 23° to 26C°. reduce energy use.
There are three ways to reduce Source: NSW Office of Environment the amount of money you spend on & Heritage website: www.savepower. energy. n s w . g o v . a u / a b o u t / d a t a - 2. Use energy at off-peak times assumptions. Aspx Energy can cost less (per unit) if you use it outside periods of peak 1. Reduce the amount of demand. But this is only possible if you energy you use To understand how to reduce have:
your energy use, it helps to know what your energy use is. Overall, the biggest uses of energy are: • hot water – about 1/3 of annual energy use • heating (in winter) and cooling (in summer) – about 1/4 of annual energy use.
•ELECTRICIAN• DOMESTIC & COMMERCIAL
How to use less hot water? • Take shorter showers.
For all your electrical needs
• Fit a ‘low-flow’ showerhead.
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• Make sure there are no hot water taps leaking.
F: 02 6454 4087 E: firstname.lastname@example.org 16 Swan St, Bredbo NSW 2626
• Use cold water of hot) in your machine.
Mattner Contracting Anything, Anywhere, Anytime
How to reduce heating costs in winter? • Only heat the rooms you are using. Close the doors of any rooms you are not using. • Turn off the heating at night or when you leave the house. • Insulate your home and shut out draughts.
Demolition Asbestos Removal Earthworks & Excavation Erosion Control Revegetation & Landscaping P. 6452 4773 M. 0408 485 390
•Don’t overheat your home. In winter the optimum temperature is 18° to 20°C. Every degree above 20°C can increase your energy bill by 15 percent. How to reduce cooling costs in summer? • Only cool the rooms you are using. Close the doors of any rooms you are not using. • Shade external windows.
Visit: www.savepower.nsw.gov.au Who is it for? NSW Home Power Savings program (NSW Government) How will it help?
• an off-peak hot water system, or
Certain Centrelink and Veterans’ Affairs cardholders or customers enrolled in energy utility hardship Time-of-use-pricing Time-of-use-pricing is where the programs or living in social housing. cost of energy varies depending on Free products and home energy what time of day or night you use it. assessment that can reduce your household energy use. There are usually three cost periods: How to apply? • peak (most expensive) Phone: 1300 662 416 • shoulder Visit: www.savepower.nsw.gov.au • off-peak (cheapest). Who is it for? The times for these cost periods Renewable energy schemes may differ slightly between retailers, (Commonwealth Government) but roughly they are as shown on the How will it help? right. People who want to adopt energyTime-of-use-pricing cannot be saving measures or buy energyrecorded by a conventional meter. saving equipment. Various schemes It can only be recorded by one of are available to help you reduce the new smart meters. If you’re not your energy use. sure whether or not you have a smart How to apply? meter or time-of-use pricing, contact Phone: 1800 808 571 your energy retailer. Visit: www.climatechange.gov.au/ Off-peak hot water systems government/programs-and-rebates Off-peak hot water systems heat Who is it for? water during the cheaper, off-peak No Interest Loans scheme (NILS®) period. You then use this hot water (community-based) throughout the day. How to help? Off-peak hot water is only available People in low-income households with certain hot water systems and who need help buying essential with certain retailers. If you’re not sure household services and goods (e.g. whether or not you have off-peak hot whitegoods, medical gear). water, or if you want to find out if you Provides an interest-free loan of can have it installed, contact your about $800 to $1,200, usually to be energy retailer. repaid over 12-18 months. • time-of-use pricing.
3. Use more energy-efficient appliances At some point you may want to consider upgrading to appliances that run on less energy, such as energy-efficient fridges and washing
How to apply? Phone: 1800 509 994 Visit: www.nilsnsw.org.au
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Edition 6, 2012
Revamping “Kinross” Cheryl and Warren Hinton moved from Terrigal Central Coast into “Kinross” Bungarby in October 2010. “Kinross” comprises 365 acres, an old homestead and an old school house with the beautiful Snowy River flowing through it.
It was old, run down and in need of some TLC. Cheryl and Warren stayed with the old structure of the house; they had previously lived in newer homes and decided to keep “Kinross” as original as possible. So with a lick of paint, a change
of door knobs and floor coverings and a lot of hard work, what was old and dark became fresh and clean, staying with a rustic country look. Continued to Page 16.
The letterbox transformed from a barrel on legs (right) to a barrel on rocks (above).
The amazing outlook after a ot of hard work and many coats of paint.
The original appearance of the house exterior prior to painting.
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M. 0408 484 414 P. 6452 7403 F. 6452 6105 PO Box 1156, Cooma, 2630 E. email@example.com Lic No.147521c
Edition 6, 2012
Continued from Page 15. Not only have they renovated their home they have taken their skills out into the old school house and have patched, repaired and turned it into a period style guest room. Taking a walk through the house, the changes are amazing. The first bathroom renovated was stripped out of stained wood panelling and single stand hand basin and replaced with a beautiful handcrafted vanity and a rustic feature wall of mini-orb. The second bathroom renovated was
transformed from a mustard yellow, popular back in the early 70’s, red plush carpet and yellow toilet, to a tranquil atmosphere of neutral tones and open space. The vanity was created by a local wood worker out of recycled wood panelling. The master bedroom was given a coat or two of paint to brighten up the original timber lined walls, from dark and heavy to light and fresh. Continued on Page 17.
Before: 70’s style kitchen of peach and timber
After: A country modern look with a fresh coat of paint, new cupboard handles, new top bench and flooring.
JINDABYNE P. 6451 4200 3 Snowy River Avenue, Jindabyne NSW 2627
Edition 6, 2012
Revamping “Kinross” Continued from Page 16. The second bedroom. A lot of the original wall panels were kept as a feature half wall, an old cupboard removed and from the picture rail up was painted a light fresh colour. From the early 70’s of peach and timber to a modern look of fresh whites and clean neutral colours. The kitchen was a big job, but to stay were the original cupboards. A lot of cleaning and many sheets of sand paper later and a good lick of paint, a change of cupboard door handles and floor coverings, decorative wall trims and the change is unbelievable. Continued on Page 18.
Bathroom One after
Bathroom Two before Bathroom One before
Bathroom Two after
New Homes Extensions Renovations
Lic. No. 211300C
Call 0422 199 199
Look Now: illustrioushomes.com.au
Edition 6, 2012
Continued from Page 17. They say first impressions count, so the mailbox had to be transformed as well, from a barrel on legs to a barrel on
rocks, and touch of paint, a creative way of clearing the rocks out of the paddock and making a great first impression. Cheryl and Warren were keen to keep the original structure and interior of the house, “one of the reasons we bought this place was we liked the old country feel”. A lot of work was put into
keeping it as is, but tweaking it with a touch of their personality. Clearing the land and turning an old house into a beautiful home and a personal retreat was a challenge, “but well worth the hard work”. “You never stop renovating, always something else that catches your eye, that’s what we love about this place”.
The master bedroom before.
The master bedroom after.
The old school house which has been turned into a guest house and entertaining area.
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Proprietor: M & A Manthey Mb: 0408 484 402 17 Lloyd Ave, Cooma e: firstname.lastname@example.org Ph: 6452 3252
Superior treatment process working for you to safeguard your family’s health
Edition 6, 2012
Lic No: R51991
Dave & Rob Wilkins
BRICKLAYERS Domestic or Commercial Work
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6452 1150 or 0413 139 344
65 Hawkins St, Cooma 2630
NSW Energy Rebate The NSW Government has commenced work on implementing new assistance measures to help households with their energy costs. The NSW Family Energy Rebate began on 1 July 2012. The NSW Government’s Family Energy Rebate is one of a number of measures designed to assist families manage their energy costs. You may be eligible for the Family Energy Rebate if you have received and been assessed as eligible for the Commonwealth Government’s Family Tax Benefit A or B. The application process for the Family Energy Rebate is different to the process for other NSW energy rebates. Application forms should be sent to NSW Trade &
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Investment (the department), not your electricity retailer. Applicants need to re-apply for the Family Energy Rebate each year. Assessment of applications is based on the Department of Human Services (formerly known as ‘Centrelink’ and referred to here as ‘Human Services’) verification of your receipt and eligibility for the Family Tax Benefit A or B after income tax assessment processes. Family Energy Rebate application forms should not be sent to the department unless you have lodged your tax return for the 2011-12 financial year (1 July 2011 – 30 June 2012) with the Australian Tax Office or notified Human Services that you are not required to lodge a tax return. The deadline for applying to the department for the Family Energy Rebate in the 2012-13 financial year (1 July 2012 – 30 June 2013) is 31 March 2013. For further comprehensive information, see Family Energy Rebate – questions & answers.
When did the Low Income Household Rebate commence? The Low Income Household Rebate commenced on from 1 July 2011, replacing the former Energy Rebate. From 1 July 2012, the Low Income Household Rebate will provide eligible customers with a rebate of $215 a year on their electricity bills. Who is eligible for the Low Income Household Rebate? To be eligible for the Low Income Household Rebate, a customer needs to: * be resident in New South Wales; and * be a customer of a retailer or a long term resident of a residential park; and * have their name on the electricity account for their principal place of residence; and hold either a: * Pensioner Concession Card issued by either Centrelink or the DVA; Gold Card issued by the DVA marked with either: * War Widow or War
Widower Pension * Totally and Permanently Incapacitated (TPI) * Disability Pension (EDA); * Health Care Card issued by Centrelink. How will I receive the Low Income Household Rebate? Customers that hold an eligible card but do not currently receive a rebate, should contact their retailer to apply. How will the Low Income Household Rebate be paid? Payments will be made as instalments on each electricity bill. The exact amount of the Rebate paid on each bill will depend on the number of days in each billing period. For 2012/13 the total rebate amount will be paid over the full year by applying the rebate at the rate of $215/365 per day. Can I apply for a rebate for my gas bill? The Low Income Household Rebate, like the former Energy..... Continued Page 27
Energy Payment Assistance The Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA) Scheme helps financially disadvantaged people experiencing difficulty paying their electricity or gas bill because of a crisis or emergency situation. The scheme helps people stay connected to essential energy services during a financial crisis. This scheme is not available on an ongoing basis. EAPA is only one type of assistance available and should not be considered as the only option for those unable to pay their electricity or gas bill. For information on other long term energy assistance measures visit www.cutyourpowerbills.nsw. gov.au or call the Energy Information Line on 1300 136 888. The Energy Assistance Guide and Fact Sheets are also available to assist community workers and
1 Hilton Street Cooma NSW 2630
their clients. The Guide provides a ‘one stop shop’ of information to be used in assisting households manage their energy use. Fact Sheet 5 may be particularly useful as it outlines a range of different financial assistance options that may be available. How does the EAPA Scheme work? The EAPA Scheme operates through a voucher system. Each voucher is worth $30. EAPA vouchers are issued by a participating community welfare organisation (CWO) such as St Vincent de Paul, Salvation Army, Anglicare and many others. The customer needs to apply to one of these organisations which will consider their claim and, if appropriate, provide assistance. The CWO assesses the customer’s situation and determines each case based on individual circumstances.
Customers can take their vouchers with their bill to an Australia Post outlet (if their energy supplier accepts vouchers via Australia Post) or post to their energy supplier as soon as possible and within 14 days of receipt. The supplier will credit the value of the voucher towards the customer’s account. Note: Before contacting a CWO to make an appointment for an EAPA assessment, please contact your electricity or gas supplier to find out what payment plans and other assistance might be available. You may be able to agree on a payment plan with your supplier to suit your financial situation. Can EAPA vouchers be used to pay gas bills? Yes. Vouchers can be used to pay natural gas bills but not for liquid petroleum gas (LPG).
Mob: 0412 484 425
Low Sheen White Base Only While stocks last
P. 6452 1736 1-3 Sharp St, Cooma
Our frames and trusses are 100% Australian - we use Hyne T2 timber and Multinail products. We service the ACT, South Coast, Snowy Mountains and surrounding areas. We provide you with an obligation free quote. Feel free to send us your plans via email or post, or if you prefer, call to make an appointment to discuss your project.
1 - 3 Sharp St, Cooma NSW 2630 Ph: 0401 877 552 Fax: 6452 1737 email@example.com
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P. 6452 1736 1-3 Sharp St, Cooma
Edition 6, 2012
∙ Site Plans for Proposed New Homes or Extensions
∙ Identification and Boundary Surveys ∙ House and Building Setout ∙ Development Applications ∙ Strata Plans ∙ Property Subdivision
Phone: 6452 2125 Fax: 6452 6248 Mobile: 0429 388 880 E: firstname.lastname@example.org 244 Sharp St, Cooma www.klevenspain.com
CLEANING SERVICES FOR ALL YOUR DOMESTIC & COMMERCIAL CLEANING NEEDS
• Carpet & Upholstery steam clean • Window cleaning • Domestic & Commercial Cleaning • Hard ﬂoor strip & seal • Wood ﬂoor restorations - sanding & ﬁnishing • Rental exit cleans • Builders exit cleans • 24 Hour Flood Damage Emergencies Email : email@example.com Ph : 0406 995 228 PO Box 661 Cooma NSW 2630
Reflect your personal style
1. Available from Liv 4 Home and Kitchen Mitre 10 Cooma 2. Breville Mixer from $329 available at Retravision 3. Cira Home Range available from Liv 4 Home and Kitchen from $19.95 4. Range of tiles available from South East Tile & Bath 5. South East Tile & Bathroom huge range of bathroomware available 6. Pizza Oven from South East Tile & Bathroom 7. Coffee Machine available at Retravision from $100
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PH: 6452 6322 MOB: 0418 604 673 11 POLO FLAT RD, COOMA
Edition 6, 2012
What is an Arborist? Sometimes also called an arboriculturist, an arborist is most commonly known as a tree surgeon. As a trained professional who performs “surgery” on trees, an arborist may remove dead, damaged or infected tree limbs, but tree surgery is just one of the jobs an arborist performs. There is much more to being an arborist than the term “tree surgeon” implies.
the tree may be in danger of disease or infestation. Tree removal: An arborist should be consulted before removing any tree. They will be able to determine if the tree needs to be removed or can be salvaged. If the tree needs to be removed, they know how to do it best, without damaging the surrounding
Although it’s a tongue twister, “arboriculturist” describes an arborist better than tree surgeon does. Some of the jobs an arborist may perform include: Tree selection: An arborist knows which trees are best for a specific environment and need. Tree planting: Put an arborist in charge of planting your trees and you can be assured they will get off to a healthy start. Tree Pruning: Pruning, or tree surgery, is an important part of an arborist’s job. They know the difference between healthy pruning and randomly lopping off branches. Even a dead limb should be removed by a skilled arborist or under their direction. Otherwise,
planting plans and other data related to their field of expertise. Choosing an Arborist Just as you wouldn’t trust a poorly trained surgeon to perform even minor surgery on your body, you shouldn’t entrust the care of your trees to an unskilled tree “surgeon.” When choosing an arborist, it is important that you carefully check their credentials: Do they have an arboriculture certificate? TAFE and university certificates range from Level I to graduate certificates.
soil or posing a danger to the surrounding area. Stump removal is a difficult and delicate job requiring the specialised equipment and expertise of an arboriculturist. Insect and disease control are also part of an arborist’s job description. In addition to these direct interventions, arborists are called upon as tree consultants by councils, architects and builders to provide tree management reports, risk reports, tree
Does the arborist belong to a recognised international or national organisation? Membership in an organisation such as the ISA (International Society of Arboriculture) is an indication they are serious about their job. Do they offer a fully comprehensive contract? A trained arborist is meticulous about outlining exactly what they are going to do and how much it is going to cost. Take care to choose a qualified arborist and you can be sure they will take care of your trees. In return, your trees will grow and thrive.
BRIAN GEACH Pty Ltd Rural ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR
• Domestic, Rural,
& Commercial • Pyrotenax Concrete • Floor Heating • Installation & Maintenance 47 Bligh Cooma 47 BlighStreet Street Cooma Ph:(02) 6452 4966 Mb: 0418 484 403
Edition 6, 2012
Get the look - French garden single French look. Today, 2 traditional styles, Provincial and Louis XV are the most sought after looks, along with the more generic Classic look: Many interior designers believe that French furniture reached the height of style and sophistication during the Louis XV era. Roughly lasting from 1710 to the 1770s, an original Louis XV antique will often include
In interior design as well as fashion, French means style, sophistication and romance all rolled into one. Unlike Paris fashions, though, getting the French look in your home needn’t cost the earth. The right touches here and there may be all it takes to make you feel as if you’re sipping wine in a Provence garden or reading Baudelaire in a Parisian salon. What is the French Look? Distinctly French styles of furniture and interior decor began emerging in the 14th century, so there really is no
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highly intricate parquetry and wood carvings. During this era, French cabinet makers extended their offerings to chiffoniers (small sideboards), a variety of desks, ladies’ furniture, armoires (free standing closets) and other fine timber furnishings. Cane chairs, too, made their appearance during this period. French Provincial furniture has its origins in Provence, in the south of France. “Provincial” refers not just to furniture and interior decor, but to the ambiance and lifestyle of the warm Mediterranean region of France. Less ornate than Louis XV and other eras, Provincial interior design is no less sophisticated. Elements of Spanish, Moorish, Italian and Islamic styles are incorporated in the Provincial look, giving it a multicultural, yet still distinctly French appearance. The so-called Classic look borrows from the best of all French styles. It has its beginnings in the Louis Philippe era of the 1800s, when cabinet makers began using machine tools and other mass production techniques. Often less ornate than antique or antique reproduction furniture, the Classic look nevertheless retains the soft curves and primary decorative elements of period French furniture. How to Get the French Look The French look is a combination of colour, texture and design. The colour pallet you choose will depend on the mood you
are trying to evoke: For a palatial look reminiscent of French aristocracy, choose more ornately detailed hardwood furniture (rosewood or mahogany are 2 favourites) and richly coloured fabrics. Deep red, cobalt blue and marigold are a few of the classic colours, along with gold leaf (or its painted equivalent) accents. Curtains are thick, folded and ornate. For a country look, blue and white are the primary colours. Country French are frugal do-it-yourselfers and would rather repair and paint an old table or chair than throw it away. It was they who came up with the popular “distressed” look in antique white. Country curtains are light weight and designed to let filtered light and air into the room. Ivory and cream coloured upholstery against deep mahogany woodwork arguably says French Provincial more than anything else. For your walls, ivory is a good colour to start with, but for greater French flair, think about painting doors and door trims or a feature wall in a softly contrasting pastel colour. For a truly French bedroom, you can’t get past a 4 poster bed, an antique armoire and a Louis XV armchair in the corner. Many furniture retailers sell French style furniture at affordable prices. Finishes range from solid hardwood with clear finishes to authentically rendered distressed paint finishes. If you see a piece of furniture at a garage sale or in a second hand furniture shop that is a little worse for wear, do as the French would do and paint the woodwork and find a local upholstery repair shop to replace the upholstery. From the humblest cottage to the grandest mansion, the French have a flair for style. Really, that is the essence of the French look; not the cost of the furnishings or decor. So, whatever your budget may be, you can have the French look in your home, too. Lic. # 186737C
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Edition 6, 2012
25 PLUMBER · DRAINER · GASFITTER 25
How to save energy at home and at the office Take shorter showers - save up You can find out how to save to $48 per person per year. energy and how to rate your Brighten rooms with a skylight home or office at the National Australian Built Environment rather than a light bulb. Rating System (NABERS) website Other at www.nabers.com.au. Find out your home’s energy rating at www.nabers.com.au. Tips to saving money on Sign up for Green Power www. your energy bill greenpower.com.au. Pool heaters, pumps and spas Kitchen (spas cost $165 a quarter). Provide space for circulation Drive a fuel-efficient car. around the fridge to save 150 kg The Green Vehicle guide of CO2 a year. Buy an energy-efficient fridge has the latest information on to save up to 4.5 tonnes of the newest models at www. greenhouse gas and $450 in greenvehicleguide.gov.au. Convert your car from petrol running costs over its lifetime. to LPG. Visit www.energyrating.gov.au. Keep your engine tuned and Put cool things back in the drive smoothly; don’t stop and fridge immediately after use. Make sure door seals are start too many times. Keep your boot empty. The clean and that the door closes heavier the car, the more fuel it properly. Cook toast in the toaster will use. rather than under the grill. Fill the dishwasher before using and open the door to let dishes dry naturally. Living areas Switch to compact fluorescent lights to save up to $50 in energy costs and half a tonne of greenhouse gases with every bulb. Don’t overheat rooms - a 1°C increase in temperature is a 10 per cent increase on the bill, up to $48 a year. Standby mode accounts for $11-$15 in every $100 on the bill. Turn TVs, videos and stereos off at the power point. Use fans instead of air conditioners. They cost only 1c an hour. Shut out draughts by sealing cracks. In winter, draughts can increase heating costs by up to 25 per cent. Turn off unnecessary lights. Use light-coloured paint to reflect, rather than absorb, light. Insulate ceilings and walls to keep the house up to 10°C warmer in winter and 7°C cooler in summer. Protect windows from sunshine or heat loss with curtains and blinds. Bathroom & laundry Switch to a solar hot water system to halve emissions and save up to $150 a year. If possible, lower the water heater thermostat to 60-65°C to reduce costs and emissions. Use the clothes line not the dryer - save up to $72 a year. Install Triple A showerheads to use less hot water and save $12 per person per year.
WAYNE DIETRICH E.W. & N. DIETRICH Licence No. 1722 | Contractors No. 2605
MAINTENANCE, REPAIRS & INSTALLATIONS •Natural & LP Gas •Commercial & Domestic •Electric Eel Drain Cleaning
P. 6452 3468 F. 6452 1021 | M. 0408 096 796 E. firstname.lastname@example.org | PO Box 987, Cooma 2630
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Appliance energy efficiency labelling All domestic refrigerators and freezers, single phase air conditioners, dishwashers, clothes washers and clothes dryers must be labelled according to their energy use efficiency. A wide range of products must also meet mandatory Minimum Energy Performance Standards. You can search for energyefficient products and compare running costs at www. energyrating.gov.au. Please visit our energy efficiency page for more information. Suppliers of products covered by mandatory energy labelling can find contact details for regulators at www.energyrating. gov.au/reg.html#contacts.
Edition 6, 2012
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Waterwise gardening tips Your garden holds the key to saving water Sydney Water has found that gardens use up to 25 percent of all household water and that conserving water is one of the most effective ways to help protect the environment and make the best use of our existing water resources.
Why get smart with water? Australia is an arid continent and unreliable rainfall is a feature of the environment. Demands on our nation’s water are increasing and water is becoming more expensive. Building new water storages is very costly, often has huge impacts on natural systems, and is often contentious. Water usage needs to be reduced, or we may not have enough to supply our needs.
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Less than one percent of the earth’s water is useable - it is a precious resource that must not be wasted. Gardens account for about 25 percent of domestic water use. Changing the way you care for your garden can greatly reduce the amount of water you need. Selection of plants that have low water requirements is an important factor in reducing demand for water around the home.
materials and compost to reduce evaporation and week growth. Use a timer where possible for sprinkler systems. Choose plants that do well in dry conditions. These include many Australian natives, succulents and mediterranean plants. Group plants with similar watering requirements. Remember, all new plantings need regular watering until established.
Being thrifty with water Some practical things to do to help save water. Water thoroughly established trees, shrubs and lawns less frequently but deeply - water slowly to allow penetration. Water your garden early morning or evening to reduce evaporation. Mulch your garden with organic
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Edition 6, 2012
NSW Energy Rebate
Continued from Page 20.
Rebate, is intended to assist eligible customers with all their household energy costs electricity and gas. The Rebate is distributed to eligible customers through their electricity bills, as not all customers have gas. What other assistance is available from the NSW Government? All customers, regardless of whether they receive the Low Income Household Rebate or not, may be eligible for the Life Support Rebate, Medical Energy Rebate or support under the Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA) Scheme. More information about these and other assistance programs can
be obtained from your energy retailer or further down this page. Will I still receive the Low Income Household Rebate if I change electricity supplier? All electricity retailers are required to deliver the new Low Income Household Rebate to eligible customers. However, if you change electricity supplier, you will need to re-apply to your new retailer. Is the Low Income Household Rebate available to long-term residents of residential parks? Yes. The Low Income Household Rebate is available to long-term residents of residential parks. To apply for the Rebate residents should contact their
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standard retailer (even if the residential park owner is supplied by another retailer). To find out your standard retailer see the attached map (PDF) or call the Energy Information Line on 1300 136 888. In addition, long-term residents of residential parks must provide their standard retailer with a written statement from the residential park owner which certifies that the customer is a long term resident at the address of the residential park. Life Support Rebates If you require certain medical equipment in your home that is necessary to sustain your life, such as a kidney dialysis machine or respirator/ventilator, you may be entitled to a rebate on your electricity bill. You will need to apply for the rebate through your electricity retailer using the Life Support Rebate Application Form. This application form must be signed by your doctor confirming that you require the equipment, and returned to your electricity retailer. You may receive the Life Support Rebate in addition to any other energy rebate to which you may be entitled. The list of equipment eligible includes the following: * PAP devices * enteral feeding pump * phototherapy equipment * home dialysis
* respirator * oxygen concentrator * total parenteral nutrition machine (new as at 1 October 2009) * external heart pump machine (new as at 1 October 2009) For further comprehensive information, see Life Support Rebates - questions & answers. Medical Energy Rebate The Rebate is for eligible customers who have a medically diagnosed inability to selfregulate body temperature when exposed to extremes (hot or cold) of environmental temperatures. It may be associated with certain medical conditions such as Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis. The Rebate provides $215 a year from 1 July 2012 for eligible customers rising to $235 a year from 1 July 2014. Eligibility for the Medical Energy Rebate is based on meeting both the primary and secondary qualifying conditions. Generally, either the account holder or anyone residing at the residence must have an inability to selfregulate body temperature. This requires the completion of the Medical Energy Rebate Application Form, signed by a medical practitioner who has been treating you for at least three months. AND * The account holder must have one of the following concession cards:
* Pensioner Concession Card issued by either Centrelink or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA); * Gold Card issued by the DVA; * Health Care Card issued by Centrelink. To apply for the Rebate, eligible customers should submit their signed Medical Energy Rebate Application Form to their retailer. The Medical Energy Rebate can be received in addition to other assistance such as the Low Income Household Rebate, the Life Support Rebate and the Energy Accounts Payment Assistance (EAPA) scheme. The Medical Energy Rebate is also available to longterm residents of residential parks. For further comprehensive information see Medical Energy Rebate - questions and answers. You can also call the Energy Information Line on 1300 136 888. Energy blackouts rebates Electricity customers in metropolitan areas can receive $80 in compensation from their energy supplier if they suffer more than four 4-hour outages in a year or any outage of longer than 12 hours. Non-metropolitan customers can receive $80 from their energy supplier if they suffer more than four 5-hour outages in a year or any outage of longer than 18 hours. The rebates are capped at $320 a year. Continued Page 29
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Edition 6, 2012
How to make a compost heap If you love your garden and want to do your bit for the environment, you want to know how to make a compost heap. Composting is nature’s way of replenishing the soil by recycling organic waste. A compost heap is just a way of helping nature do this. Instead of sending your organic waste to the tip and going out and buying fertiliser for your garden, if you save your organic waste in a compost heap, you can create your own fertiliser and save money at the same time. Here’s how to do it. Start by choosing the right spot Think of the fertile soil on a rainforest floor and you get a good idea of the ideal location for a compost heap. The tree canopy allows light in, but not direct sunlight. When rain falls, the rainforest canopy diffuses much of it, leaving the ground moist but not soggy. The ideal compost heap will be moist but not wet and warm but not hot, so choosing the right spot for it is an important first step. Choosing a compost bin Compost bins are optional, but a compost bin or bins can make
heaps. This way, as you u s e one on your garden, another will be developing for later use. Be sure to “tumble” your compost heap with a pitchfork regularly, to keep it aerated and mix partially decomposed matter in with more decomposed materials. Whatever you do, don’t take the worms and other “creepy crawlies” that find their way into your heap out. They are a compost heap’s best friend. What should you compost and what should you leave out? Fallen leaves, grass clippings and even small twigs you collect when pruning can be thrown in the compost heap. Larger twigs can be used, too, but only after shredding. Most of the organic waste from your kitchen is perfect for a compost heap, but there are exceptions. Meat and fish are out, as are prawn and crab shells. Unless you want to grow a weed and random vegetable garden, avoid throwing flower heads, weeds with seeds or raw vegetable scraps with seeds in the heap. Nature has provided seeds with hard shells that will not burst open until the right time for growing comes around. The compost heap will not break down those shells. When you spread the compost one of the valid concession cards over your garden in spring, listed above, and meet all other it will be like planting a weed eligibility criteria. garden from seed. However, you may be eligible for A good mixture of organic the Rebate if the concession card matter is better than a single holder is named on the electricity account. I hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card. Am I eligible for the Rebate? Holders of a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card are not eligible for the Low Income Household Rebate at this time. This is consistent with some other states across Australia. However, holders of the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card may be eligible for the NSW Government’s Life Support Rebate. Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders may also be eligible for the Commonwealth Government’s Seniors Supplement. or more information about the Seniors Supplement of the differences between the Centrelink Health Care Card and the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card, contact Centrelink on 132 300.
composting easier and help keep you motivated to maintain your bin. There are three basic types of compost bins: A stationary bin is simply a special receptacle for composting materials. Often, stationary bins are placed together in a row, to allow several “batches” of compost to mature at intervals. A tumbling bin makes aerating and mixing compost easy. Worm bins are designed to make worms the primary means of breaking down organic matter. Each of these types of bins has its advantages. Stationary bins are great for producing large volumes of compost. Tumbling bins create usable compost fast; in as little as three weeks. Compost made by worms is very nutrient rich and worms aerate and enrich garden soil even more. If you choose to make a simple compost heap in a corner of your yard, keep the advantages of these three types of compost bins in mind. If space allows, make the area wide enough to create two or three separate compost
NSW Energy Rebate Continued from Page 27. * an outage caused by a natural disaster, or severe thunderstorm or weather (defined standards are used); or * an outage caused by third parties, such as a vehicle accident or vandalism. Full details of the compensation arrangements can be found at: www.ipart.nsw.gov.au/Home/ Industries/Electricity/Licensing/ Licence_Conditions How do I obtain the rebate? If you think you are eligible for the rebate or would like to ask some more questions, contact your electricity supplier or your local electricity distributor. Contact phone numbers can be found on your electricity bill. I have two electricity accounts. Can I get two rebates? No. The Rebate will only be applied to your principal place of residence. Someone in my household holds an eligible concession card, but I don’t. Can I get the Rebate? No. The account holder must hold
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source for making a compost may help fix this problem. If leaves and grass clipping heap. The way you stack it, too, will make a difference in the aren’t decomposing, it may be quality of the compost. Start your because there aren’t enough heap with the thicker, tougher other materials in the mix or it materials, such as twigs. then may be because there is not add a layer of seedless weeds, enough moisture in the heap. In lawn clippings and other garden dry weather, water your compost material. Top this with your heap occasionally. Give a compost heap a try kitchen scraps and then add a thin layer of manure if you like, and you’ll find that it can be as to hasten the process. Build the rewarding as gardening itself can heap in layers like this and you be. create the perfect conditions for composting. While making a compost heap PETER MOULD is relatively easy, things can go wrong. A few things to look for include: A smelly compost heap is not a healthy compost heap. It may indicate that you are not aerating the heap enough. Mix all the layers Quality Brickwork thoroughly to aerate the heap. Domestic and Commercial If the heap smells like ammonia, it Quality work assured probably lacks carbon. Brown Ph: 6452 6553 matter such as leaves, hay and Mob: 0416 052 553 even shredded 87 Soho St, Cooma newspaper (in limited quantities)
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Edition 6, 2012
October gardening guide October sees the garden in full spring array. Trees have come into leaf, flowers are opening everywhere, summer vegies can be planted and there’s a special spring fragrance in the air. Garden growth is fresh and unspoilt – it’s still a bit early for pests or heat to have done much damage.
Vegies to sow in October
Flowers to sow in October There are hundreds of salvia varieties - one for every conceivable situation - but for massed colour it’s hard to beat the annual salvias that thrive in summer conditions. With its hot red flowers, Yates Salvia Dwarf Scarlet has become trendy again. Raise seeds in pots of Yates Seed Raising Mix and plant out in the garden when the seedlings are big enough. In warm areas, these plants can last for more than one year. Salvias that survive winter can be cut back and fed with Thrive Flower & Fruit.
Fruiting vegetable like tomatoes, capsicum, okra and eggplants (aubergine) need a long growing season. Yates Organic Seed range includes Eggplant Black Beauty. Feed in October Start seeds off in pots. Carefully October’s the month to split transplant when the soil is warm and crowded orchids and re-pot, then the seedlings are a good size. In feed with Dynamic Lifter pellets. Liquid warm climates plant ginger and sweet feed growing vegetables and flowers potato. with Thrive Soluble All Purpose (for leafy plants) or Thrive Soluble Flower & Fruit for productive varieties.
Watch for caterpillars eating holes in leaves. Control with low toxic Success. Look out, too, for white fly on vegetables. Spray under leaves with Nature’s Way Insect & Mite Killer Natrasoap.
October job file Check potted plants. If they’ve been in the same container for more than a couple of years, make sure there is enough potting mix for the roots to spread into and that drainage
lant of the month P - Echium (pictured) This large, dramatic perennial has grey-green leaves year round. In spring it develops upright cones massed with purple-blue blooms. These are particularly attractive to bees and butterflies. Grow in an open sunny spot with good drainage. Trim lightly after flowering.
Prune in October
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Prune passionfruit by cutting off long trailers and thinning crowded parts of the vine to let more sun in. Prune spring bloomers such as forsythia, spiraea, philadelphus and weigela. Shorten long stems and cut out the oldest canes completely at ground level.
October pest watch Dust young tomato plants with Yates Tomato Dust to prevent pest and disease attack. Rub off young aphids on new growth. Remove tatty leaves from cordylines and begin spraying new growth with a Yates Rose Gun Advanced to control rust.
is okay. If in doubt, take the plant out of the pot and re-pot with fresh mix into a larger size, or remove some of the old mix from the sides or the rootball and pack some fresh, good quality potting mix around the roots.
Climbing edibles When we think of climbing plants, we often picture flowering climbers such as wisteria and jasmine, but there are some vegetables with a climbing habit too. Continued Page 32.
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Edition 6, 2012
October gardening guide Continued from Page 30. Climbing plants have the great advantage that, by the sheer nature of their vertical growth, they take up less space in the garden. Remember, though, that climbers have a lot of above ground growth, so their roots need some extra care. Prepare the soil before planting by digging in plenty of organic matter (well aged manure or compost). Make sure that the soil drains effectively. Mulch
around the base of the plant so that most vegies are annuals, the support doesn’t have to be there for keeps. roots stay cool and moist. Smaller plants will grow happily on Productive plants are especially a tepee or tripod made of bamboo Star pickets can create hungry, so feed regularly with a good stakes. quality fertiliser. Dynamic Lifter for fruit a stronger and more permanent Something is good, or fortnightly applications of climbing framework. as simple as a few horizontal wires Yates Uplift. attached to a fence may be sufficient When it comes to providing supports but, if the fence reflects the heat, for your climbing vegies, there are make sure you leave an air gap endless choices. Fortunately, because between the wires and the wall.
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Plastic mesh or lattice can be purchased ready to go. One easy suggestion is to shape and tie the wire or plastic mesh into a cylinder with a diameter that’s broad enough for the climbing plants to scramble up and through. Old wooden stepladders and fencing panels can look picturesque but they tend to be weighty, so make sure they are well anchored.
Which climbing vegies?
area regularly harvested. Yates Purple King Climbing Bean has deep purple pods that turn green when they are cooked. Kids love this almost magical colour change. Climbing snow peas are happiest when they’re grown in spring or autumn. Sow seeds direct into pots or a garden bed next to a support the plants can climb onto. Even a teepee made from bamboo will be strong enough. Sugarsnap Pea is another climber that develops slightly fuller pods. Like snow peas, the pods can be eaten whole.
Some members of the cucurbit Climbing beans like Blue family will climb happily, but only if Lake will crop for longer the fruit doesn’t get too big. A giant than the bush varieties, pumpkin would pull its vine down, especially if the beans Continued Page 33.
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Edition 6, 2012
October gardening guide Continued from Page 32. but small cucumbers such as Yates Lebanese will happily scramble up a fence, trellis or teepee. Use soft ties to attach the plant to vertical wires or similar supports. Many cherry tomatoes - such as Yates Small Fry - grow on sprawling plants that do well next to a fence or wall. The reflected warmth encourages the tomatoes to ripen and extends the cropping season. Climbing spinach (Basella alba) is also called Malabar spinach or Ceylon spinach. It’s a tropical twiner that can be grown as an annual in cooler climates. Plants will produce seeds in late summer that can be sown in the next spring. Feed and water well to encourage rapid growth. Pick leaves often and use as you would fresh spinach.
Climbing roses Roses are in full bloom in late spring and while bush (also called shrub) roses are the most popular, climbing roses are ideal for growing against fences and over archways and pergolas. Most climbing roses have long, arching canes that reach up to the sky. They have large flowers that produce a massed show in spring and continue to bloom throughout the warmer months. Favourite climbing roses: * Pierre de Ronsard starts with creamy white, cabbage-like flowers that become pinker as they mature. It has won international popularity awards. * Gold Bunny has masses of golden yellow flowers over a long period.
* Golden Showers has ruffled petals that start off a rich yellow and fade to a soft buttery lemon. * Climbing Iceberg is as free flowering as the shrub Iceberg. Iceberg is often listed as the world’s favourite rose. * Constance Spry was the first rose bred by David Austin, the renowned English rose breeder. * Dainty Bess has single flowers in a soft rose pink with central, eyelash-like stamens. Another group of climbing roses are called ramblers. These have pliable stems and smaller blooms. Most rambling roses flower just once a year, but what a glorious flowering it is. The stems and leaves become almost invisible beneath the froth of blossom. One of the best known ramblers is Dorothy Perkins, which is so vigorous it makes a smothering ground cover. Stems take root where they touch the ground and or the new Dynamic Lifter Flower long shoots scramble over trees and Food. Use a Rose Gun Advanced or garden beds. Rose Shield to protect from pests and diseases. Water in the morning so the And then there are the heritage and leaves can dry before nightfall. wild climbing roses such as creamywhite Lamarque (pictured), yellow Pruning climbing roses can be banksia (Rosa banksia lutea) and challenging. One major factor is white Rosa laevigata which is also whether the rose repeat flowers known as the Cherokee Rose. through the warmer weather or only bloom in spring. Spring-only Caring for climbing roses bloomers, like banksias and Dorothy Feed climbing roses regularly Perkins, should be cut back hard throughout the growing season with after pruning. Long-flowering Acticote, Dynamic Lifter for Roses climbers should be cut lightly for
the first couple of years. Give the plant time to establish and don’t be too impatient for flowers. It’s not uncommon for a new rose to spend the first couple of years growing and establishing its framework before it settles down to reliable blooming. Once a rose is established, long shoots can be shortened in winter and old unproductive canes removed completely at the base.
Run your heating all day – without breaking the bank Consider for a moment the idea of leaving your heating on all day while you’re at work, to keep your house toasty warm for your arrival home. Sure, many people uses timers to make sure their heating kicks in an hour or two before they arrive home, but running heating all day when you aren’t home – that would be crazy, your energy bills would skyrocket, not to mention the environmental impacts. There is an option though. Ecoheat is an environmentally friendly heating and cooling system. It can be used as standalone heating and cooling in mild climates and is an excellent supplementary system in extreme climates like Cooma and the Monaro. Ecoheat was designed and developed over a 15 year
period by Cooma Electrical Contractor, Ron Knight. Ron has lived in Cooma for decades and designed the system with the local climate in mind. “It’s a simple way to cut back the energy requirements in your home, and if you use less energy your bills reduce - simple as that,” Ron said. The system runs whenever the sun is shining and compliments your existing heating. Running costs are virtually free (the cost to leave a light on) so it can be left on all day whether you’re home or not, and will continually pump warm air inside, increasing your homes base temperature. “It means your main heating system is starting from a higher base, so it doesn’t need to work as hard to keep you and your family snug and
warm.” Ange Hart and her husband Paul live in Bunyan and have a large two story stone house, built in 1841. They travel to Canberra for work most days and run the Ecoheat system constantly. “Ecoheat is extremely cost effective and has made a huge impact in our home” Ange said. “We use far less heating now than we did 18 months ago before the system was installed and it also has the benefits of fresh air pumped into the house. “The thermal mass of the house is very well maintained with continuous warm air circulated, and in summer the system works throughout the night to pump cool air into the house, ensuring a comfortable temperature year round.”
For more information on Ecoheat call Ron Knight on 0417 484 169 or visit ecoheat.com.au
Edition 6, 2012
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Style for the outdoors
Edition 6, 2012
Hot water systems pipes, especially the first two metres leading from the hot water system. Closed cell rubber Running your hot water system insulation is recommended. efficiently, reducing your hot water You can add extra insulation consumption and choosing an to a storage tank to reduce heat energy efficient hot water system losses, saving you up to $15 a year can make an enormous difference (don’t restrict flues or air vents). to the size of your energy bills and Check with the manufacturer greenhouse gas emissions. to ensure the warranty won’t be affected before installing extra Quick tips to save hot water: insulation. • install a 3 star WELS rated Keep the hot water system showerhead sheltered and protect any pilot • take shorter showers lights from draughts. • fix any drips Install a timer on peak rate electric storage units. • wash clothes in cold water. To maximise performance of a Running your system efficiently solar system, when possible do The thermostat on the water jobs requiring hot water early in heater should be set to deliver the the day. lowest acceptable temperature. This allows the water remaining (A storage system must be kept in the tank to be reheated by the above 60°C for safety reasons). sun. This will lower your running costs If your electric storage system is and extend your tank’s life. running on a peak tariff, switch it Ensure your unit is not oversized off whenever you can. They can be very expensive to for your household. run - up to 3.5 times more than Install your system as close as off-peak electric or natural gas possible to all points of hot water systems. use, to minimise heat loss in pipes. Turn your hot water unit off If this is not possible, locate if you’re going away for an it close to where small, regular extended period. amounts of hot water are drawn Some units have a ‘vacation’ off (usually the kitchen). setting to make this easier. Insulate exposed hot water Water heating can account for almost 40 percent of your home’s energy use.
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Edition 6, 2012
Space savers: clever storage solutions for your kitchen options when it comes to kitchen storage space so if you are in the process of planning a new kitchen, check your plans and work out the best way to incorporate suitable storage solutions that will work best for you personally and don’t be afraid to get Therefore, the design and location some advice from the professionals. They usually have some great ideas of the storage space needs to be carefully planned if you are going to and when you start looking, you will be amazed at the possibilities. maximise your kitchen’s useability. The kitchen would have to be one of the busiest rooms in the house so it needs to be a well-planned functional space and this means lots of funky storage solutions for all those appliances and utensils that make up a good working kitchen.
Fortunately there are several clever
Placing some emphasis on storage useful guidelines to give you a head start. Base your storage locations for solutions will go a long way toward specific items on how often you use creating a kitchen that will work well for you but if you are unsure where to start, them. Plan storage zones around the areas pop along to a few kitchen retailers where the items are to be used as this and check out their designs. Talk to will save you a lot of running back and their design consultants too as they are there to help and can design a great forth.
Consider open shelves. They are great for easy access to those items in regular use and But in the meantime, here are some are ideal for decorative touches too.
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Plan for your storage options to be relevant to the size of your kitchen and the items you need to make space for. Smart planning can create a lot of space, even in a small kitchen! Plate racks are a boon! They take up very little space and leave your cupboards free for other items. Good storage solutions are a must as they mean much more working space for you and this is vital, especially when it comes to having room to prepare, cook, and serve food.
FOR ALL YOUR TREE SOLUTIONS
The need here is bench space and the key is having storage solutions that will give you clutter-free bench tops, guaranteeing ample space for meal preparations with the advantage of being much easier to dust and keep clean and that has to be a winner. And you can say goodbye to the “junk drawer” with drawer organisers. These practical inserts keep your drawers tidy and what’s in them a lot more visible.
kitchen for you while still keeping the costs within your budget. The end result should be a kitchen that you will love, that looks great and that works very well for you.
Edition 6, 2012
Creating stylish splashbacks choose for your splashback, you may need to seal A splashback is a necessity in any kitchen but it up the walls. they can also make quite a statement and should It is very stylish for an ultramodern kitchen but is it to ensure easy cleaning and to keep it stain-free. definitely be considered more closely when planning prone to smudging and scratching which means it Other than that though, you can achieve some your kitchen décor. will require more maintenance than tiles or glass if beautiful looks with stone. Stone tiles can also be used to create a stunning kitchen splashback but Regardless of the look you choose, there will be a you want to keep it looking as good. again, they will probably need to be splashback to compliment it and sealed to keep them looking their the most popular materials are best. glass, tiles, stainless steel, stone and bench top into splashback Use a good quality sealant for the continuations. best stain-free, easy clean results. Glass splashbacks look stunning in a modern kitchen but they can also be used very effectively with more traditional looks as well.
Continuous flow bench top to splashbacks eliminate the seam where the bench top meets the wall, as these are a single unit. Generally these are made from acrylic materials and are also available in reconstructed stone materials and come in a variety of looks, colours and finishes that can give you a very smart look in a modern style kitchen.
They come in a variety of colours and textures and can even be colour-matched to your kitchen colours and are wonderfully low maintenance. Tiles are another popular choice as they are so easy to care for and offer a huge variety of colours, finishes and decorative looks.
Something new however are acrylic solid surfaces that are manufactured from polymer resins and feature seamless joins. The material is non-porous so it provides a life-long surface and is probably the best choice you can make in areas of high wear and it can also offer you a lot of flexibility in your design as well.
They are also clean, hygienic and allow your inner artist to roam free and create a truly individual look and the combinations are limited only by your imagination.
A popular choice today for The best way to decide however is to visit some a really sleek look is stainless steel. As a kitchen Stone is a timeless material that looks equally at splashback it works very well and many people today home with any décor, from sleek ultra modern to kitchen showrooms and see the range of splashbacks are opting for stainless steel as the overall material, rustic charm but, depending on which stone you for yourself. There are some lovely options out there! using it for their bench tops and then continuing with
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Edition 6, 2012
The kitchen palette - colour your life The kitchen has definitely evolved over the years and is now as much of a design feature as any other room in the home, with homeowners creating kitchens that are as unique and attractive as they are functional. On the whole, the style of your home will probably dictate how your kitchen will look and it is a good idea to stay with the same style or design so that your kitchen will remain in keeping with the rest of your house. For example, if yours is an ultra modern living space then a metallic look could be the way to go. It would certainly suit the architecture but you could also get away with bright bold colours as an alternative as these would work just as well. Or you might prefer to go with just white. All-white kitchens are a very popular choice as they will fit in well with any style or décor and you can break up the white and add interest via coloured accessories and appliances or artworks and they always look clean and bright. It’s a big decision but most people manage to come up with something that they like and that will work for them all on their own. But in the event that it all proves too much, you can always call on the professionals who
are full of clever ideas. Colours are always a great way to put your own stamp on your space and kitchens of any style lend themselves well to colours, regardless of whether they are bright primary hues or the softer pastels and earth tones. Some things to keep in mind are: a) are the surfaces easy to maintain and keep clean? b) does it compliment your home? c) is it going to date? and d)will what you’ve chosen have any impact on your home’s resale value? If you are definitely planning to sell your home down the track, your choice of colours and the style are going to have an impact so think very carefully about what you choose. Some looks and colours can date very quickly.
Is my kitchen fire safe? The fire services recommend this simple safety checklist: •
Keep children away from hotplates and ovens whilst cooking and consider installing a stove guard. Heat cooking oil carefully and slowly in the right size saucepan to avoid fat splatters. Turn pot and pan handles inwards so they won’t be knocked over. Clean your stove grill after each use and clean the range hood filter and all kitchen appliances regularly. Install a fire extinguisher and fire blanket in the kitchen and know how to use them. They should be situated at least 1 metre away from the stove and between the stove and the nearest exit. Install non-slip matting around the stove and sink area. If cooking oil catches fire, turn off the hotplate and slide the lid over the pan or use the fire blanket to smother the fire.
If a kitchen fire occurs and you don’t feel confident you can put it out, switch off the appliance, leave the premises and call the fire service on Triple Zero (000) from a safe place.
Ensure that all cooking appliances are turned off after use.
Don’t leave your cooking unattended. If you must leave the kitchen whilst cooking, turn off the hotplate.
Don’t wear clothes with loose fitting sleeves.
Don’t keep your tea towels, oven mitts and other flammable items near the stove or cook-top.
Don’t use water to put out fat and oil fires. Water can cause the fire to spread rapidly and cause horrific burns.
Don’t carry pans of hot or burning oil through the house as this may spread the fire and cause serious injury.
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Edition 6, 2012
Preparing to paint...
• Before using a brush, remove any loose bristles by It’s worth spending a little to get the basic tools Preparation giving it a good tease with your fingers. It’s a good that will help you do the job properly. Preparation is essential to getting a lasting result that
Ladders • A good step ladder is a must. Aluminium ladders are lightest, but they are usually the most expensive. Steel and wooden ladders will do the job. • A flat top or clip tray will help hold tools and paint cans, giving you an extra hand to hold on with.
Drop Sheets • Light canvas or calico sheets are the easiest to work with and will last the longest. Light plastic sheets are inexpensive and should be used only for covering furniture as they are slippery and do not absorb paint.
you’ll be proud of. Paint doesn’t cover holes and cracks and a poorly prepared surface is a major cause of poor results. • Protect unpainted surfaces and furniture. •M ove all furniture out of the room, or to the middle of the room if you don’t have much space and cover with a cloth
• L ay down a drop sheet to protect your flooring, don’t use old sheets, they are too absorbent and the paint will soak through •M ask skirting boards and trims with suitable masking tap.
•M ask electrical switches instead of removing them, it’s safer and less work
• A good supply of rags will help you clean up as you go.
• If you are painting two adjacent walls with different colours, mask the corner, it’s easier when cutting in.
• For water based paints keep a damp rag handy, for oil based paints moisten your rag with turps.
Prepare the painted surface
Scrapers & Knives
• On previously painted surfaces remove all loose, flaking or powdery paint
A quick look around your local Bunnings Warehouse will show you a huge range of scrapers. Listed below is a basic selection.
• Wash dirty or greasy surfaces with Selley’s Sugar Soap, as any dust and dirt will prevent paint from sticking
• Putty Knife: You’ll need one to make filling cracks and small holes easier. • Stripping Knife: A wide bladed knife for stripping paintwork, wallpapers etc. It can also help with filling wider holes and depressions. • Shave Hook: A triangular scraper blade with a handle, available with either straight or curved blades. Good for curved moldings and energetic stripping. • If you’re doing exterior work you will also need a brass wire brush and/or a stiff bristle brush.
• Patch any cracks and holes with a suitable filler or sealant • Sand down to a smooth level surface and dust off • For bare surfaces apply a coat of Primer Undercoat. Remember to use either oil or acrylic depending on the surface you are painting. Additional information can be found on the product label.
Brushing With brushes, as with most tools, there is no substitute for quality. • Avoid cheap brushes with short, sparse bristles.
idea to moisten the brush with the same liquid that’s in your paint, i.e. water for water based paints, and turps for oil based paints.
• Acrylic Paints are best applied with a long bristled, full bodied brush. • Oil based paints, undercoats and primers require a medium bristle length, solidly packed for effective control. • Rough wood, brickwork and cement render may be more practically painted with a synthetic fibre brush. • Fill the brush by dipping in up to half the length of the bristles. If you are painting a larger area by brush, apply the paint in vertical or diagonal strips until the brush runs out of paint. Then brush horizontally until the area is evenly covered. Finally finish off with very light vertical strokes using the tip of the brush: This is called ‘laying off’. • If you are using a brush and a roller, the first step is to paint the edges of the area you are going to paint. This is known as ‘cutting in’. The aim is to paint a strip about 5cm wide around any flat areas on which you can use the roller. Don’t do too much of your cutting in at once.
Woodwork • Try to start at the top and work down, painting with light, even strokes and feathering the edge of the wet paint as the brush empties. Recharge the brush and work back into the wet edge. • Never try to paint over an area which has partially dried as the brush will leave marks in the surface. • The base of skirting boards can be a trap. Always use a shield; a bricklayer’s bolster or piece of metal or stiff cardboard works well. Hold the shield into the base of the skirting and paint down to it, moving it along as you go. Even if you have no carpet to protect, it will stop the brush picking up dust and grit from the floor.
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Edition 6, 2012
Archicentre warns on retaining walls Home buyers should not overlook the condition of retaining walls on any property they are considering buying, Archicentre, the building design, inspection and advice service of The Australian Institute of Architects advises. Ian Agnew, Queensland General Manager of Archicentre said, apart from the physical condition of retaining walls, what makes them so crucial to property owners is that they are often on or close to a property boundary and can become a costly legal battleground between neighbours.“
A collapsed boundary retaining wall can have a major impact on the value of a home and can run into tens of thousands to fix, depending on the site, with many retaining walls having been constructed on steep slopes as part of the establishment of a level housing site.” Mr Agnew said, “Archicentre architects conducting inspections for home buyers, or providing advice to home owners, who have observed their retaining walls cracking, sometimes find construction shortcomings and no relevant paperwork available in relation
to the design of the retaining wall or any approval process. “Paperwork can become vital to protect home owners in the case of a retaining wall failing, both in terms of having it fixed and also against legal action by a neighbour who may have had their home damaged or devalued by the failure of the retaining wall.” Mr Agnew said impacts on the integrity of a retaining wall can be caused by a variety of factors that include: • The location of large trees close to the retaining wall • Poor drainage allowing the structure to be weakened by hydrostatic pressure. • Poor construction through use of the wrong materials for the site • Lack of a proper and
approved construction. Weakening of the retaining wall by changing earth levels at the top or bottom of the wall. Mr Agnew said, any movement of a retaining wall close to a home can have a dramatic impact on the existing building structure causing severe structural damage and in some cases leading to a home having to be pulled down. “Any foundation movement transmits to the footings which can result in cracks appearing in exterior / interior walls and pressure being placed on the building frame. The use of retaining walls to support land higher than the footpath is common and varies from low walls to above head height which can present major legal problems if they collapse and injure a pedestrian.” •
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Edition 6, 2012
Rewarding experience with Re-Wood Re-Wood is a upcoming furniture made rusty steel bases which making and antique restoration complement the character of business operating locally out of the recycled timbers. Leesville Estate, Jindabyne. “The weight of these tables A relatively young business has worked out well with the with just over one year of deck furniture as they don’t blow work behind them, they have away in our sometimes windy completed many different jobs environment!” from handcrafted dining tables, Re-Woods tables start in price coffee tables, TV cabinets, wine from $1990.00 for a dining cabinets, sideboards, mirror table size of 2100mm frames and timber carved doors, x 1200mm that (Just to name a few!) can seat up Kerry McGaw, the man with the skills, has also restored and repaired a variety of local’s personal pieces from chests of drawers, heirloom trunks, tables, chairs, cutlery boxes and even a gramophone! “We also re-polish furniture with a choice of techniques including French polishing, lacquering, oil and waxing, and painting. A lot of the timbers we use are recycled and have come from buildings and bridges around the snowy area. Recycled timber has a remarkable depth in colour and look.“
perfect country style dining table to last a life time of meals; Give Kerry McGaw a call!
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to ten people, whilst the charming recycled timber coffee tables start from $560.00 (1250mm x 650mm). Re-Wood are holding a public exhibition at the Jindabyne National Parks Centre gallery space for the month of December, all are welcome to see Re-Wood’s handiwork.
If you have that old chest of drawers or Some of the outdoor dining antique chair you’ve tables Re-Wood has made been wanting to always are incorporated with purpose do up, or are looking for the
Commercial collections for various recycling streams within the Cooma, Bombala & Snowy Mountains region. Hire and servicing of waste skips ideal for the: • Building sites • Handyman cleanups • General household cleanups • Scrap metal cleanups & collection
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WHO ARE WE?
In an effort to reduce the amount of material going to landfill, council has embarked on a program to recycle,& re-use materials and offer them for sale. The Scarp Mart Shop is open on Saturday afternoons, from 1pm to 5pm and it is a favourite shopping spot for the region. The shop is manned by two council employees, Phil Holzhauser and Glenn Weston. EVERYTHING IS NEGOTIABLE Items sold will help cover costs and importantly, reduce waste. For residents, taking re-useable goods to the Scrap Mart will save them tipping fees – and they may pick up a bargain while they are there. If you have suitable re-useable goods hand them into the staff and they will try to get more life out of them. Also if there is an item you need ask the staff to keep an eye out for it. We can all work together to minimise waste to landfill.
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WHAT CAN YOU BUY?
Edition 6, 2012
Tips for saving water Every day, there are simple things we can do around the home to save water and money, and help the environment. Find out how your home rates for water performance by using National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) online rating tool. Kitchen • Wash your vegetables in a partially filled sink, rather than under running water. • Instead of running the tap until the water is cold collect the water in a jug and chill it in the fridge. • When buying a new dishwasher, look for a high-star water-efficient model. • Only run your dishwasher when it’s full. • Cook vegetables in a steamer, microwave or pressure cooker, or in pots with lids. These methods use less water and energy, and retain the nutrients. • Fit the size of the pot to the amount of food being cooked. Do not use a large pan filled with water for a small amount of food. Bathroom • A hot water circulator will recirculate water until it is warm enough for your shower, saving you around 17,000 litres of water each year. • Install a 3-star rated showerhead and save more than 50 litres of water every time you shower. • While waiting for a shower to run warm, collect the water in a bucket to use on the garden or indoor plants. • Turn the tap off when you clean your teeth - this can save around 17 litres of water a minute.
What size tank do i need?
• To rinse your razor, run a little water into a plugged sink. • The toilet uses 21 percent of water inside your home. Dual flush cisterns use 50 percent less water than a standard single flush toilet. Replace your single flush toilet suite with a new 4 star dual flush toilet suite. Laundry • Wash only with a full load. • Buy a 5 star front loading washing machine. • Clean the lint filter on your washing machine. When you buy a washing machine, find out where this filter is on your model. • Install a new rainwater tank and connect it to your washing machine.
to see if plants need watering. If it’s damp 2 cm down, you won’t need to water. • Water early in the morning so gardens have the water they need during the warmest part of the day. • Don’t over water your lawn, train it to use less water by encouraging the roots to grow deeper. • As the seasons change, monitor and adjust the amount of water that is applied. • Choose lawns and native Australian plants with a low water demand.
• Keep planted areas dense and consolidated, and group plants according to their water requirements. • Use windbreaks, pergolas, screens, lattice, shade cloth and vines to shelter the house, outdoor living areas and plants. • Prepare the soil before planting with water crystals to ensure that plants can make the most of the water they need. Collect rainwater • Consider establishing system.
ALLEN & BOWE
L A N D S C A P E S
Washing your car • Use a car wash that recycles water and uses high pressure cleaning units. • If washing your car by hand, use a bucket, as a running hose wastes up to 20 litres of water a minute. Garden • Always use a broom or rake rather than a hose to clean paths, paved areas and decks. • Use a trigger hose or watering can rather than a hose to water plants. • Where plants are growing, test the soil with your finger
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Edition 6, 2012
Dangers of electricity Staying safe around electricity is everyone’s responsibility. You should watch out for yourself, your friends and your family.
Electricity is part of our everyday life designed to provide us with a safe and reliable source of energy. Most of the time, electricity is our friend, but sometimes it can be dangerous. This happens when we’re exposed to it in ways we were not meant to be. We can avoid these hazards by following some simple rules.
Electricity and water do not mix • If your hands tingle when you put them into the sink it may mean the water is conducting electricity and something is wrong. Let Mum or Dad know, as they may need to call an electrician. • When you have a bath, there should be nothing electrical anywhere near you. In a bath, the metal plughole and the plumbing is connected to the earth, making it a conductor of electricity. This means if a household appliance such as a light or hair dryer fell into the bath, whoever was in it would also become a
conductor of electricity.
•W herever you are, if you get into trouble call out for help and make sure not to touch anything. Get whoever helps you to turn the electricity off. Water can conduct electricity because electrons can flow by hitching a ride on atoms and molecules in the water. Water contains dissolved substances, such as salt. These greatly increase the ability of water to conduct electricity. That’s why electricity passes easily through our bodies - because our bodies contain water and salt. This is also why it’s important to keep water away from electrical appliances.
Be careful around electricity poles and wires when you play • If you fly a kite and it gets caught in the overhead powerlines, live electricity could travel down the string and seriously hurt you. So be careful! • Never climb a tree that is near powerlines. Look up before you climb! • After a storm if you see some fallen powerlines, stay well clear of them. There is a strong chance they are still “alive”.
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We all like to play outside, but there are electrical hazards that we need to know about. Electricity poles and wires are all around us. They can be above us, next to us, and even below us. Whenever you can, play in open spaces away from electricity poles, towers and powerlines.
Metal is a conductor of electricity and can be dangerous • Never put a metal object - like a knife into a toaster. It is very dangerous! • Never put anything in a power point that’s not meant for it. Electricity will travel right up the metal object into your body. • Be careful when climbing a ladder at home. The power lines connected to our house are usually protected, but they can be damaged by rubbing against the gutter or a tree, or through exposure to the sun. • If a person is on a metal ladder and touches the exposed line, the electricity will travel through their body to the earth. We all come into contact with metal objects on a daily basis - turning on a tap, playing with our computers and toys and even using the fridge. Because metal conducts electricity, you have to be very careful when you use metal items.
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Stay away from electricity substations • Sometimes it’s tempting to ignore signs and fences around substations. Remember, the warnings are there for everyone’s protection, so make sure you follow them! • Substations contain special equipment with invisible hazards. You don’t even have to touch anything to get hurt. • Just being too close to some substation equipment can be dangerous, and may even kill you! You will find electricity substations and power equipment all over the place.
They are behind fences, in buildings, or on the side of the footpath, and most have danger signs. Substations transform the voltage generated at power stations so it can be distributed to homes, schools and businesses. Sometimes they are near parks and play areas. Substations are safe, but you must follow the rules.
If you see a dangerous situation involving electricity, tell an adult! • Faulty appliances and damaged electrical leads should be disconnected at the power point and fixed or replaced by an electrician. • Never stack power points. Use a power board or have an extra power point installed. Stacked power points can cause fires. Always be on the look out for dangers in and around your home. This could be anything from a faulty electrical lead to a “stacked” power point - one with too many plugs in it. These situations could be life threatening and an electrician should be called in to fix them.
Know what to do in an electrical emergency
If you come across an emergency involving electricity • Ensure your own safety • Turn the power off at the power point and remove the plug (if you are able to do so) • Get an adult • Ring 000 We all hope that we are never in an emergency involving electricity, but if we are, it’s important to know what to do.
DIAL BEFORE YOU DIG! • Before you or your family do any major digging in the yard you should get Mum or Dad to ring Dial Before you Dig on 1100 to make sure there are no underground cables near your property. If you hit a buried power line you could be electrocuted, as well as possibly interrupting the power to your suburb.
FOR EMERGENCY HELP PHONE 000 Information courtesy of Energy Australia For further detailed information on electricity please visit www.energy.com.au
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Edition 6, 2012
Find an old treasure at Scrap Mart The clichéd saying, “Someone’s trash is another’s treasure” is definitely the case with the ‘Scrap-mart’ situated out at Cooma landfill. Just now three years old, ‘Scrap-mart’ employs two full time employees to assist the many people who come out of a Saturday afternoon to snatch up various home wares, hardware, building materials and even jewellery at very reasonable prices. Any profit that is made is invested back into the landfill. When asked how effective the second hand depot was, Resource and Waste manager for Cooma-Monaro Shire Council, Jeff Tate said, “It’s fantastic! There is a real strong following
for it; people even queue up!” “It’s almost like a landfill department store,” Mr Tate chuckled. Since its establishment, there has been a major decrease in local landfill, proving its favourability to both the customers and the environment. If you have something you’re after or are a bit of a collector, why not ‘pop’ out to “Scrapmart” where you might find something that intrigues your interest.
Renovators warned on asbestos removal Archicentre, the building design, inspection and advice service of The Australian Institute of Architects has issued a warning to home owners thinking of renovating at home or their beach house to be aware of the deadly dangers of ASBESTOS. David Hallett, General Manager of Archicentre said the real risk of exposure to asbestos fibres and dust occurs with the demolition, drilling or cutting of products containing asbestos. Archicentre Architects carrying out prepurchase property inspections or design reports come across many homes with original asbestos material in place or previous renovations that have involved asbestos material. “Large numbers of houses throughout Australia have been constructed using asbestoscement products as internal and external wall linings, ceiling linings and roofing. Asbestos was used in flat sheet fibro cement building products until 1982 and in corrugated fibrocement roofing material until 1986 because of its cheapness and ease of installation. Mr Hallett said, “It is vital for everyone to understand that once you disturb asbestos there are
extreme health risks involved for home owners and their families in relation to the diseases which can be caused by asbestos fibres.: These include asbestosis (a progressive, fibrotic lung disease causing increasing breathlessness), lung cancer and mesothelioma (a rare form of cancer affecting the lining of the chest cavity and the covering of the lungs or, less often, the lining of the abdominal cavity and the covering of abdominal organs). “These diseases can occur many years after the exposure to asbestos dust has ceased, but the likelihood of a person contracting an asbestos-related disease increases as the intensity and duration of the exposure increases. “Anyone undertaking renovations and living in their home at the same time with their children needs to be well informed about the dangers and extremely careful about how asbestos is managed by contractors who may be carrying out the renovation works. “Asbestos sheeting or other materials containing asbestos should always be removed by a specialist contractor who will also arrange for its disposal in a landfill registered to take asbestos materials,” Mr Hallett said.
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The Furniture House Group is a collection of independantly owned and mostly family run furniture stores. The Group has over forty Members primarily in country locations throughout Victoria, Southern New South Wales, South Australia and Tasmania. This Membership enables your locally owned store to match the buying power of the larger chains as they endeavour to acquire quality products at reasonable prices for their customers. They pride themselves on a high mix of Australian content which provides their customers with a good selection of colour and styles. They offer a broad product range including 100% quality leather lounge suites and beautiful hardwood timber dining ranges. They can also assist in sourcing those special items that may be required from time to time. Support your local store as they offer friendly service and assistance with all your furnishing needs.
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Edition 6, 2012
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Interest rate cuts continue to encourage renovators Interest rate cuts announced this month by the Reserve Bank will encourage Australian renovators, Archicentre, the building design, inspection and advice service of The Australian Institute of Architects said.
through renovation will become an important national wealth creation strategy as well as underpinning jobs in this difficult period.” Archicentre has recently experienced an increase in the number of people seeking renovation advice as home owners shy away from the cost of selling and buying or ordering new homes.
David Hallett, General Manager of Archicentre said, ‘The cut in interest rates by 0.25 percentage points to 3.25 per cent, the lowest cash rate since October 2009, will “Home owners with tight enable young couples, families budgets can turn the $50,000 and retirees to contemplate to $60,000 of ‘dead’ money home renovation in a more spent on relocation taxes, affordable climate. fees and charges to move “The financial turmoil of the into a renovation investment past twelve months and lower where they gain in wealth interest rates will see more and lifestyle with new kitchens, bedrooms, Australians stay put and spend bathrooms, more money on renovating outdoor living areas or home their homes and improving office extensions. their financial position by “The dramatic drop in adding value to their major demand for new homes is asset - the family home in a tax providing a buyer’s market free investment.” for renovation projects as Mr Hallett said, “With builders look for replacement a quarter of Australia’s jobs in a more competitive population expected to be 65 environment and quote more or more by 2047, the creation competitively,” Mr Hallett said. of equity in the family home to boost retirement funding
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Renovators smelling the roses In a busy world and with tightening budgets people are looking to create a signature ‘Green Room’ sanctuary in natural surroundings, Archicentre the building design, inspection and advice service of The Australian Institute of Architects said today.
Renovation design by Architect Terence Nott Edward Lukac, South Australian State Manager of Archicentre said the trend is focusing on the value of gardens and courtyards as an area for social activity such as dining, gardening, vegetable growing and relaxation. “The current costs of living pressures, including rising energy prices, has also provided a catalyst for families to look at maximising their home for entertainment and leisure.” Mr Lukac said the warmer weather of spring and summer encouraged the trend of creating versatile indoor/ outdoor dining areas under the roof line
with ready access from the home. placing more emphasis on housing roofing or light wells and an energy“This trend is increasingly popular with design fitting into the environment efficient design. A complementary many home owners commissioning with the blending of landscaping and style of flooring creates the illusion of renovation designs from Archicentre to building becoming an important part of seamlessness. create feasible and affordable designs.” the original design brief often combining “Leafy pergolas can also provide protection and help lower Mr Lukac said, “Creating a successful the skills of architects and landscape sun electricity costs by cutting the use Green Room is built on good design, designers. “One of the most cost effective ways of air conditioners, one of the major costing the project carefully and ensuring the project is built to the of increasing the liveable areas of the contributors of high energy costs. specifications using quality materials home is to extend out into the back “Some Green Rooms are quite that can be easily maintained to cope garden with a deck linking the indoor extensive with outdoor kitchens and outdoor spaces of the home. with the Australian climate. incorporating a barbeque for “This is often done using sliding or entertaining in the outdoor indoor “It is also important that building folding doors, clear or translucent environment.” works such as decks and pergolas are built with the appropriate permits where required. “Renovators are seeing the indoor / outdoor Green Room in a family home as a versatile zone providing both an entertaining area for family and friends and a quiet area for individual relaxation. “With good design the Green Room can add real value to the existing home at an affordable price by its very nature of not requiring walls, windows or plumbing / electrical work. The minimal structure •RETAINING WALLS •GARDEN MAINTENANCE •PAVING blends the garden into the interior of the home which can be enhanced with the use of pot plants and green garden walls. Mr Lukac said “This is also
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