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I lived in over 26 different 1870-1960s houses before moving into my 1983 unit – so immediately I’ve modernised !
In many houses I’ve had the nightmare of overgrown gardens, tree roots blocking sewerage pipes, roof leaks arguments with terrace neighbours, spending most weekends on never-ending mowing, pruning, fertilising plants/poisoning weeds/taking trailer loads of prunings to the dump.
My unit, in a quiet street, a short stroll from the CBD, is north-facing, with internal bathroom (no windows, ceiling exhaust fan – more comfortable in winter) and laundry, sliding full-mirrored built-in wardrobes in both bedrooms, security electric door undercover parking, and the lovely garden and repairs and common area cleaning and carpet vacuuming are done by someone else, even if I’m away.
My old unrenovated terrace in the next street has outdoor bathroom, toilet and laundry, raise-it-by-hand rolladoor, steep stairs to the bedroom and would probably sell for 20% more; a renovated house at least 40% more. Yet the market rent for my terrace is about 10% less than my unit.
My unit is single-level so no internal stairs, has ideal thermal mass (brick walls, concrete floor and ceiling with neighbours above, below and both sides), ideal North aspect living spaces and cooler southern sleeping spaces with through-flow cross-ventilation, so is comfortable year-round with minimal heating and cooling costs.
Newer units come with internal heated swimming pools, saunas, spa, steam rooms, gym, squash courts, BBQs, games rooms (billiards, table tennis), meeting rooms, libraries, concierges, marble bathrooms, ducted air-conditioning, and luxury fittings.
The way I see it – terraces are for the fewer young folk who want to try the funky/arty/’historical’ experience – but when it comes to most young tenants especially Asian students – city convenience and modern facilities win the day every time !
I’ve lived in my unit for about 20 years, I love it and expect to be here till I drop off the twig.
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