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What is considered an optionally extra for housing

What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Old Feb 11th 2016, 6:02 pm
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Default What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by BEVS View Post
Oh . Houses here ARE insulated and double glazed .
Not sure if it was this thread or somewhere else – I read a discussion about double glazing and I got out of that (thread) that NZ has very little double glazed homes.

Is it a specified item on home builds (planning etc) or considered an option ?

Cheers

Last edited by MrsFychan; Feb 11th 2016 at 6:39 pm. Reason: moved from another thread as way of topic
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 7:41 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

It been compulsory in all new homes since 2008
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 9:01 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Only homes built in the last few years will have double-glazed windows, but not all windows are created equal, and the requirements vary from region to region.

According to the building code, Zone 1 region in New Zealand, which includes areas of the Waikato and Bay of Plenty and north, does not include double glazing as a code requirement. Single glazed windows with a low-E coating in a timber or PVC frame are acceptable. In my observation (I view many new buildings) and speaking with a few builders, most newly built houses will have double glazing in aluminium frames with no thermal break, because they are the cheapest. They really shouldn't be allowed in code because of their poor insulating values and the likelihood of condensation due to the cold metal in contact with the glass. The insulation values required for code takes the entire build into account as a whole, not as individual elements.

You will see double glazing in *some* homes built since 2008, but not all. The new code requirements for window insulation came into effect in 2008, but many houses were already approved for construction at the time, or in early stages of building, and they were not required to adhere to the new code. There would be a time lag, and I suspect you'll find many houses finished in 2009 and beyond do not meet the newer (although still inadequate) codes. The vast majority or homes post 2010 will have double glazed windows in an aluminium frame with no thermal break, which has the lowest insulating value of the new products available. Also, for some reason, I notice that laundry room and garage windows are single-glezed aluminium framed, even in the newest builds.

I have seen myself, and speaking with builders, that older 70's and 80s homes do not necessarily have wall or ceiling insulation. Perhaps the codes weren't adhered to, or the builders/owners didn't feel it was necessary, but the reality is, not all homes of that era will be insulated. Besides, the quality of the insulation in those days was very poor, sometimes just a foil envelope, or a very thin fiberglass. Insulation deteriorates over time, and as the original stuff was thin and poor to begin with, you should consider the insulation in homes of that era to be essentially non existent. Of course, they will all have single-glzed windows, usually in aluminium frames, which is about the worst kind of window possible. They create rivers of condensation in winter and have almost no insulating value at all.

I personally do not feel you need central heating in Auckland. It doesn't get cold enough, BUT this is only the case if your house is extremely well insulated, which would describe precious few houses in New Zealand, including new builds (which are often built using lowest rated insulation allowed for walls, ceilings and poorly performing aluminium framed windows). We have installed the highest rated insulation in our house top, bottom, sides, interior walls, and installed double-glazed argon filled timber windows and doors, and the result is we need to use the heat pump infrequently in the winter. The sun heats the house during the day, and the heat is well maintained. Our house also breathes well (and not through gaps in windows and doors) so no need for expensive ventilation system. We have 4 heat pumps, including a multi-room unit, so essentially we do have central heating. Our heating bills are very moderate, and substantially less than pre-renovation. The cost of the extra insulation and better windows was not substantial, especially in view of the cost of the entire renovation.

The most difficult part of building a well insulated house is convincing builders and contractors to do as you request. In our case, we had to urge them to do our bidding, even to the point where the insulation man became angry at us because we didn't agree with his assertions that you don't much insulation in Auckland. I'd imagine people, when building a new house or renovation, will just do as the builders suggest, and only just meet code, which is not good enough. It seems that the minimum code here is treated as the gold standard, instead of the absolute minimum it's meant to be.

The newer builds are an improvement, but only just. The almost universal use of non-thermally broken aluminium framed windows means that most houses aren't really up to scratch by international standards. Plus sufficient heating is still an issue (for example, a fancy newly built townhouse, costing well over a million dollars, with under floor heating in the bathroom - but no heating in the bedrooms!). There would be a few really well build houses out there, probably built by expats, but not many. You can heat these newer homes with log burners and heat pumps, but it will be expensive because of heat loss. So new houses are still too cold, or cost too much to heat well, but I imagine, compared to their friend's houses, schools, or local shops, they must seem warm and snug.

New UK style PVC-U windows are now available, as are thermally broken aluminium framed double-paned windows, so the options are there if you want to self build.
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 9:43 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Weezer.

Most homes here have caravan windows fitted as standard!!!!
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 9:44 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by The Weezer View Post

The most difficult part of building a well insulated house is convincing builders and contractors to do as you request. In our case, we had to urge them to do our bidding, even to the point where the insulation man became angry at us because we didn't agree with his assertions that you don't much insulation in Auckland. I'd imagine people, when building a new house or renovation, will just do as the builders suggest, and only just meet code, which is not good enough. It seems that the minimum code here is treated as the gold standard, instead of the absolute minimum it's meant to be.
.
Thanks for your very informative reply.

This scares the hell outta me. Doesn’t sound very professional at all I’m afraid to say.
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 10:11 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by AndyCampbell View Post
Thanks for your very informative reply.

This scares the hell outta me. Doesn’t sound very professional at all I’m afraid to say.

Kiwis aren't known for their "she'll be right" attitude for nothing!

A few months ago Duncan Garner, a TV presenter on a local current affairs program mentioned, during a segment on the problem of NZ's damp housing, how cold his house was. This week Jessie Mulligan, a TV presenter, wrote a restaurant review where he lamented how hot and uncomfortable he was in his house and the problems he had trying to stay cool inside. I guess he doesn't have a heat pump (which heats, cools, and dehumidifies):

Restaurant Review: Spacca, Remuera - Viva
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Old Feb 11th 2016, 10:40 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by The Weezer View Post
Kiwis aren't known for their "she'll be right" attitude for nothing!

A few months ago Duncan Garner, a TV presenter on a local current affairs program mentioned, during a segment on the problem of NZ's damp housing, how cold his house was. This week Jessie Mulligan, a TV presenter, wrote a restaurant review where he lamented how hot and uncomfortable he was in his house and the problems he had trying to stay cool inside. I guess he doesn't have a heat pump (which heats, cools, and dehumidifies):

Restaurant Review: Spacca, Remuera - Viva
Dare I say that being lax is one thing but getting an attitude when the person paying (customer) wants something done in a certain manner is a totally different thing (for me).

Perhaps if you want to build properly you will show the idiots how it should be done so the attitude is to keep the flock all dumbed-down. I say this part jest / part shuddering as dumbing down (or acceptance of any dumb level) is something that scares me and I didn’t think NZ would be like that.

The other factor that I must say that this is red flag material,in context of adult contractor to customer situation. I have to consider the what-if scenario where my 12 y/o son wants to develop his ingenuity. Is that then all subject to how NZ has been doing things or the last 100 years and hanging onto that ? So ultimately no space for progress / development ?

Hmm
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 2:28 am
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

One reason why people don't go all out on extras for new homes is the exceptionally high cost of building materials. Most are trying to make savings, rather than just being dumb.

By the way, UPVC windows are extremely expensive and not considered appropriate for high UV countries. Distributors claim that they are treated to prevent sun damage. Anyway, that's why aluminium windows are more popular - I agree with the requirement for thermal breaks. You just have to ask for them because they cost more.

I've never heard of a builder refuse to build to a higher spec, and there are companies like Landmark who do anyway. Most usually assume you are on a budget. Showhomes often have price lists where there is a choice of basic, mid or top of the range features. You can then pick the optional extras that are important to you.
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 2:39 am
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by jmh View Post
One reason why people don't go all out on extras for new homes is the exceptionally high cost of building materials. Most are trying to make savings, rather than just being dumb.

By the way, UPVC windows are extremely expensive and not considered appropriate for high UV countries. Distributors claim that they are treated to prevent sun damage. Anyway, that's why aluminium windows are more popular - I agree with the requirement for thermal breaks. You just have to ask for them because they cost more.

I've never heard of a builder refuse to build to a higher spec, and there are companies like Landmark who do anyway. Most usually assume you are on a budget. Showhomes often have price lists where there is a choice of basic, mid or top of the range features. You can then pick the optional extras that are important to you.
Neither our insulation man, nor our builder refused what we asked them. I meant the insulation man was trying to tell us we were making a mistake (if rather aggressively), but he did as we asked, as did the builders. My point was there seemed to be a different culture of building here, where good insulation is not considered necessary. We built back in 2010. I think there's beginning to be an attitude change. You're right, building materials are expensive, but better windows are not substantially more expensive than the "cheaper" ones. I have talked to several people about this, and it didn't seem to be just a concern in the cost in upgrading. I got the impression most people were ignorant of their options, or didn't think the extra cost was necessary. Afterall, how many people really are aware that most double glazed windows in NZ aren't that good?
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 7:31 am
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

You can take any claims regarding insulation with a very large pinch of salt - our house was built in late 90s and the insulation consisted of foil paper looped beneath the joists under the house. The roof space had blown in 'fluff' which is quite common - just a very light and patchy coating of loose fluffy bits almost as if someone blew in a dusting of fake snow for Christmas decoration. Both totally useless and I think the cobwebs were more effective.
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 7:56 am
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by Bo-Jangles View Post
You can take any claims regarding insulation with a very large pinch of salt - our house was built in late 90s and the insulation consisted of foil paper looped beneath the joists under the house. The roof space had blown in 'fluff' which is quite common - just a very light and patchy coating of loose fluffy bits almost as if someone blew in a dusting of fake snow for Christmas decoration. Both totally useless and I think the cobwebs were more effective.
Yes, that is what I am hearing. On one level it has been supposedly compulsory from 2008 and by contrast contractors (builders) “aggressively” apposed to high build levels.

I must say – it doesn’t stack up with the “100% pure” slogan, as wasting heated space in the grand scheme of things is indicative of inefficiency (as an attitude).

Not unless we are talking methane heating of course, but I am sensing that that would be a touchy subject
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 10:07 am
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by AndyCampbell View Post
Yes, that is what I am hearing. On one level it has been supposedly compulsory from 2008 and by contrast contractors (builders) “aggressively” apposed to high build levels.

I must say – it doesn’t stack up with the “100% pure” slogan, as wasting heated space in the grand scheme of things is indicative of inefficiency (as an attitude).

Not unless we are talking methane heating of course, but I am sensing that that would be a touchy subject
It sounds like you're getting it!!! It's all about the money and 'cheapness' usually wins out in . Why else would anyone put only one plug socket in the kitchen of a modern day home - because no doubt it was gonna cost at least a whole twenty bucks to add a second one.
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 5:35 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by AndyCampbell View Post
Yes, that is what I am hearing. On one level it has been supposedly compulsory from 2008 and by contrast contractors (builders) “aggressively” apposed to high build levels.
Can I just say, you're basing this on one report. Aggressive to one person may be 'gets straight to the point' to another.
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Old Feb 12th 2016, 7:57 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

This is getting silly, forming an opinion based on one badly written report, about a pretentious cafe trying to pass itself off as
a restaurant in a completely irrelevant blog. As with anywhere, some people will rub some people up the wrong way, it doesn't
make it a national trait.

The NZ climate isn't like the UK climate, houses can be different and still be fine, if you want a UK style house, stay in the UK
or use your EU passport and look around Europe

I have lived in 9 homes in my 8 yrs here, everything from a brand new (un double glazed) home right through to my current
100+ yr old fixer upper villa. None of my homes have been damp or mouldy, this includes my current place which has 100 yr old
single glazed sash windows, insulation in the roof and underfloor but none in the walls. Just like everywhere else there are some
ropey places out there and all you do is say no thanks.

UPVC is not popular here as the plastic doesn't last long due to much stronger UV levels, it breaks down, or it did in the past.
However it is now being marketed again as an option so will assume newer materials are more suitable but I haven't looked into it.

Every builder everywhere will build to a price, we hear all the time about british new homes falling apart and the developers shunning
responsibility, I know plenty of people here in new homes and all are very happy with the finnish and quality.

This comment I have to consider the what-if scenario where my 12 y/o son wants to develop his ingenuity. Is that then all
subject to how NZ has been doing things or the last 100 years and hanging onto that ? So ultimately no space for progress / development

shows you have little knowledge of the kiwi psyche. Kiwis are renowned for and take great pride in their ingenuity, their ability to get
things done, to find a way, to think outside the box, if there's a problem a kiwi will find a solution. It's jokingly referred to as the
number 8 wire mentality, but kiwis take it very seriously and and are rightly proud of their achievements.

It strikes me in all your threads and posts, you are looking for negatives, not looking for positives, and I think you need to do some
serious research or change your attitude. If you turn up here comparing this or that to the UK and criticizing the way things are, you
wont be making many friends, either Poms or kiwis, and you're just gonna end up miserable and homesick.
In the past, you've defended your stance by saying "I have a way of doing things" and "creating a picture" but you turn everything
into such a negative, it's hard to see how you can possibly picture anything that might appeal. Having done it twice, I know moving
halfway around the world is about trying to do things differently, accepting what you have isn't the same as what you had. Too many
people come here, ignore the positives and make everyone miserable by whinging about the negatives. Thankfully they tend go back
to blighty.

I get tired of people who know nothing about NZ, grumbling about the place and picking the place apart.
Maybe you should start asking for plus points instead of wording your posts in such a negative way. This place isnt perfect, nowhere is,
but for most of us its a place we are proud to call home

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Old Feb 12th 2016, 9:26 pm
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Default Re: What is considered an optionally extra for housing

Originally Posted by jmh View Post
Can I just say, you're basing this on one report. Aggressive to one person may be 'gets straight to the point' to another.
Hmm, seems like double standards here mate.

If I challenge a Kiwi about the negative side of NZ am I being straight to the point or aggressive ? I’m sensing the Kiwis use the home ground waay to their advantage but play the sympathy card playing away.
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