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Rosalie Beveridge outside her two-storey property on a 542sq m block in Banjup. Two-storey homes are coming a popular option for buyers.

 

SHRINKING block sizes and reduced building costs have lifted demand for two-storey homes in Perth.

While WA has traditionally been known for its single-storey bungalow-style houses, dramatic falls in the median block size have encouraged more owners to take their homes to the next level.

New data from the Urban Development Institute of Australia reveals lot sizes in Perth fell 7.7 per cent last year to an average 395sq m, with the city the first and only major market with an average lot size below 400sq m.

UDIA WA chief executive Allison Hailes said smaller blocks were driving demand for two-storey homes.

“The size of a lot no longer has a direct relationship with the size of a home in the outer suburbs,” Ms Hailes said.

“The emergence of compact, affordable two-storey homes means the price point for a 4x2 can be lower than its single-storey equivalent, while also providing an equivalent or superior outdoor living area.”

Stockland WA general manager Col Dutton said a third of the properties at the company’s latest display village in the Calleya estate in Banjup had two storeys.

“We have seen an increase in the number of inquiries and buyers opting for double-storey residences at our seven communities in WA, with families and upgraders with older children leading the demand,’’ Mr Dutton said.

“Families with older children usually prefer two-storey homes because they can provide greater separation in living areas and there is also the potential for a larger backyard.”

Benefits of Two-Storey Homes
Maximises the use of the land
Maximises views
Better natural lighting
Balconies provide views
Staircases create storage below
Always cooler on the ground floor
Separate living areas over two levels

WA’s biggest land developer, Nigel Satterley, said two-storey house-and-land packages were often more affordable than single-storey packages.

“The average block size across Satterley’s WA communities is 375sq m,” Mr Satterley said.

“So, Perth’s home builders are maximising the space to design homes that create efficient use of space.

“The old thought was that it was more expensive to build a two-storey home, but today the two-storey market in Perth remains steady and you can build a spacious two-storey home on an affordable homesite for $380,000.”

Mr Satterley said builders were also looking at alternative ways to build double-storey homes, such as using frames on the second storey instead of brick, so homes were built faster to reduce costs.

Social researcher Mark McCrindle said with Perth’s population continuing to grow and urban infill becoming a bigger issue, two-storey homes had replaced the single storey as the traditional family home.

“As homes get bigger it’s become the expectation that families aspire towards the two-storey house,” Mr McCrindle said.

Rosalie Beveridge and daughter Lilian Beveridge-Reid, 3, at their new two-storey home in Banjup. Mrs Beveridge says there are big advantages to building up. Picture: Daniel Wilkins

When the only way is up

FOR Rosalie Beveridge and husband Matthew Reid, the only way was up when it came to building their dream home.

The couple have just moved into a two-storey property on a 542sq m block at the Calleya estate in Banjup.

Mrs Beveridge said building two storeys was the only way they could have their “dream family home”.

“We wanted to have a pool in the backyard and a large grassy area for our three-year-old daughter, Lilian, to run around in, so it was a natural option for us to build up,’’ Mrs Beveridge said.

“While we got one of the bigger blocks on the estate, we wouldn’t have been able to fit everything we wanted with just a single-storey home.”

Mrs Beveridge, a New Zealander, spent 10 years living in the UK, where two-storey homes are the norm. She now couldn’t imagine living in a bungalow.

“One of the highlights for me is that a two-level home is ideal for separating the living areas and bedrooms, and it can also create more privacy,” she said.

“It is also allowing us to capitalise on the natural bushland near our block of land. If we had built a single-storey home, we wouldn’t have been able to experience those views.

 

Source: ANNABEL HENNESSY, May 20, 2016