I forgot to tell you about a standard of New Zealand houses. Why renovate?
First thing I noticed in NZ houses was – it is cold inside the house – compared to European houses, in much colder climate such as in Germany.
Almost all houses before 90’s built have no double glazing – even with double glazing, it is not properly done (without argon gas and thermal frames – thus reducing the effect).
Because the under floor insulation is not done properly, they put carpets, cork, tiles, that vary from room to room – this mismatch decrease the value of the house. Our bathroom was carpeted and underneath, the timber was rotten.
Heating is done locally, no central heating (chimney or heat pumps are common).
New Zealand is in the southern hemisphere – no snow in Wellington but it can have a cold breeze. Humidity is also a problem.
Also, there is an earthquake.
Timber houses get old and need a maintenance. The houses are not made of solid stones or marbles.
As mentioned, (I believe) the double glazing and insulation should be a priority for renovation for dry and healthy house. It is not too obvious for New Zealanders though who walk the road bear footed (yes, you see them on the street). But we miss the central heating and insulation in European homes.
If you would ask a Kiwi which do you prefer “a large jacuzzi room or a proper insulated house ?” I am not sure.
Our priority of renovation – double glazing windows and a central heating – may not be the right choices for every Kiwi. But reducing a monthly cost of heating and electricity to less than 200 dollar for a large house would justify the reason in long run.
Or would you still prefer a large jacuzzi room to an insulated home ?