ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Australia affordable houses

Updated on July 15, 2019

This is a type of affordable house

Because a simple small house, would be more affordable than a large one, it will attrack more buyers  than a large and well decorated house. that is why there are builders that will build small house instead of larger one.
Because a simple small house, would be more affordable than a large one, it will attrack more buyers than a large and well decorated house. that is why there are builders that will build small house instead of larger one. | Source

Australia affordable houses

Welcome to my article (34), Australia affordable houses

Dear readers, in our last article, we were talking about earning and saving money, one of the aims for saving money is to buy our own house. So, let us talk houses that we can afford.

As we know, the houses are not all the same, because houses come in a variety of styles and sizes, for many reasons. Of course, we want to live in the best houses available, but most of us cannot afford large expensive houses, therefore, we should be happy to live in any house that we can afford to buy or rent.

For this reason of affordability, to satisfy the house supply market, there are several types of house that are being built at any given time. In this article, we are going to talk about the type of houses that I ended up working on, in the early sixties. Because this article is meant to cover the story of my life, as well as what I did for a living.

In the early sixties, I ended up working on average houses that the working class could afford to buy, or at least the aim of the builders that were building them, was based in this affordability, since they had designed them with this purpose in mind, because in the end, even though they had been built cheap not all of us workers would afford to buy these types of houses. But anyhow this was the purpose of building these types of affordable houses in the early sixties.

I guess that today is almost the same, some builders, build these affordable houses at the outskirt of any town or city, since the blocks of land are cheap to buy.

Now let us try to describe how we were building these types of houses from scratch.

---------------------------------------------------

Photo of some suburban houses

There are many type of houses in the town, but we can only buy those houses that we can afford. Therefore building affordable houses might be the best way to go.
There are many type of houses in the town, but we can only buy those houses that we can afford. Therefore building affordable houses might be the best way to go.

Building houses from scratch

My story of building affordable houses from scratch

Anyhow, one of the reasons why I have started writing these articles about building houses, it is because I want to tell you the story of my life, and what I did when I came to Australia. But at the same time, I want to write something useful to my readers, and I believe that knowing how houses are built is useful to know, since knowing a few things about building houses comes handy at times; you see, we live in houses, therefore, we want to know as much as we can about them. Because sometimes we need to know how to do it yourself repairs and other things, since houses need to be maintained, if we want to enjoy them fully. So, I am going to describe how were these houses building done, with as many details as I can, so that anyone interested in houses can learn something useful from these building articles.

Now has I have explained in our last article, I was working in the building industry with this Italian builder, which was good for me because my native language is Italian. Now, with this builder not only we were re-stumping or building rooms under the existing houses, which required a lot of work to be done by hand, but we were building new houses from scratch. As I have said at the beginning of the sixties most of the digging were still done by hand, specially the type of work that we were doing on these new houses, as machines were expensive to hire then, So, they were used only, if there was a lot of digging to be done, and with the machines of those days we could only dig straight forward things and not small detailed digging, as they were required to build these houses, anyhow as I said, I did a lot of this digging work myself, as I was employed as builder labour, and this was one of the jobs that I had to do.

Therefore now, let us imagine that I have finished digging the foundation and these stump holes for this new house, and now, we need to lay concrete in the foundation, and to concrete the stumps foundation and the stumps themselves. So, let us go over what we had to do, because in those times these things were all done by hand and started from scratch.

------------------------------------

Making your own concrete

Making your own concrete on site from scratch

Let me explain, what is meant by concrete in buildings and how it is made You see, if during your life, you are going to do renovations, it is useful to know how to make your own concrete, so that you understand what is required and how and why it must be done in certain ways, you will find this information written in this article. Some people can say that today things are different, so why bother to tell us this stuff about how to mix concrete properly, when we can buy concrete ready mixed by truckload, or in bags and all you need to do is to add water to make concrete. I say, okay, you can do that. But there are times and places, when you must do these things the old way.

Therefore, I believe that you still need to know how concrete is made from scratch, because that is the only way if you don’t want to make mistakes. Therefore, let me tell you how we were mixing our concrete in the sixties, and what is required to do that and how it is supposed to be done, if you want a good job done and the concrete to last a long time.

By the way, here we need to clarify one thing, what is meant by the word concrete, because most people replace it with the word cement. On building sites, the word concrete means all the element mixed together able to harden to a solid consistency within a certain length of time, therefore, it has got to be done the right way.

One of the most important things while mixing concrete is that the concrete must be well mixed and to a workable consistency using the least amount of water possible, because if too much water is used then the concrete becomes weaker, therefore, it must be done properly.

Usually concreting and other jobs are done according to its specifications, you see, any firm that makes building plans, for a house or something of more importance, they must write also the specification how the job needs to be done. In these specifications it will be written what material to use, how to use it and the quantity and quality required. Therefore, to concrete a foundation for an average small house, the specification could state that the concrete must be mixed to a consistency at least 1 to 6; for people that knew this it meant that to mix the concrete you should use 1 part of Portland cement 2 parts of river sand and 4 parts of gravel (aggregate) and mix it as required until an even consistency is achieved. For the stumps usually would be a bit more cement than the foundations. But I must say that sometimes even these rules had to be changed a bit depending on the material that can be delivered on that local site.

Now let us say that we are ready to start mixing the first batch of concrete, as we have made everything ready, and everything has been delivered. To make concrete you need at least four elements of materials plus clean water; 1 Portland cement, 2 washed river sand, 3 clean or washed gravel and 4 reinforcement steel rods, and it is helpful if you have a mixer if you have to mix a large amount of concrete, because to mix by hand is hard work and the concrete needs to be well mixed.

Now let us start the mixer and make the first batch, while the mixer is turning around, the very first thing you put in the mixer is water, one must be careful not to put too much water to start with, it has got to be just enough to mix everything to a certain consistency, so let us say that we put 8 litres of water (the amount of water can be different, since it depends on the amount of water that is already in the (sand gravel) aggregate) then we put in the mixer cement, next is the river sand twice as much as the cement and then the clean gravel 4 time as much as the cement; here the mixer is going around and mixing everything together.

Please note, that if you change the way you put your materials in the mixer, from what I have described above, you may have different result, and usually it would take longer to mix everything properly and to the right consistency.

For people that do this job all the time it is easy for them to see if the concrete that is being mixed has the right consistency required, once you know this, if it is too dry just add a bit of water and if it is too wet you should add a bit of everything else. There you are it is not too hard if you know how to do it.

What I have written above applies only to house building of less importance, for building that are large and important the concrete needs to be to a very high standard and specifications, so, here again you need to know what is needed before you do anything.

---------------------------------------

Steel reinforcement in buildings

Here are some typical steel reinforcement used in buildings, there are many more types and sizes. Note the way the steel has been tied up for the foundations or beams, there are also loose steel bars that could be used, we used 4 10 mm rods in stumps
Here are some typical steel reinforcement used in buildings, there are many more types and sizes. Note the way the steel has been tied up for the foundations or beams, there are also loose steel bars that could be used, we used 4 10 mm rods in stumps
Stepped foundations, when the ground is not flat it is necessary to lay the foundations with steps in them, so that the foundations are level for the bricklayers to lay bricks on them. See the picture this is a typical way of laying the foundations.
Stepped foundations, when the ground is not flat it is necessary to lay the foundations with steps in them, so that the foundations are level for the bricklayers to lay bricks on them. See the picture this is a typical way of laying the foundations. | Source

Concrete requires team work

To concrete well and do a fair amount of work on these houses you need a team, even if it is a small team. Our team was usually three of us, I as builder labour, John as bricklayer and Con the contractor who was a bricklayer and concreter. We didn’t mind if we switched around a bit to do the job. So, I was usually on the mixer mixing the concrete, one was with a wheelbarrow taking the concrete from the mixer to the foundations that we were concreting and one was fixing the concrete in place.

Fixing the concrete for the foundation was physically the lightest job, when we were mixing the concrete with this mixer on site, but it is the most responsible job, because while concreting the foundations, you must make sure that the steel rods reinforcement was in the right position, at the same time you had to pack the concrete down and then the concrete in the foundations has to be finished level, this was easy when the ground was level, but when the ground was not level, it was necessary that steps were made and they had to be to gauge, which was equal to the thickness of one or two laid bricks or more, or the thickness of a laid block, if blocks were going to be used to build the walls on this foundation, whatever was going to be used to lay on the foundations, we had to try to make an adjustment while we were laying the foundations; therefore, this was the job for the experts, at that time it was not that hard, because mixing by hand even using a mixer was a slow job, so, the bloke that was fixing the concrete had plenty of time to do his job right.

What I have written above is how we used to lay small house foundations in the early sixties, which are the same as we lay foundations today, except that today we order concrete already mixed, but we have to be ready with everything and everything has got to be in the right place, because the concrete ready-mix truck will unload its concrete quickly, so, there is no time to do anything else except to fix the concrete at the right level as quickly as possible.

----------------------------------

Concrete stumps under houses

This is one short concrete stump with ants capping; These type of stumps could be used up to 2.4 meter high under the houses, after that a bigger stump would be required.
This is one short concrete stump with ants capping; These type of stumps could be used up to 2.4 meter high under the houses, after that a bigger stump would be required.

Concreting stumps on site

Now let me go back again to the early sixties, when we were concreting these stumps on site, this procedure is not done much today, the reasons for this change it is because the buildings have changed, and today these stumps can be made in a concrete factory, and when cured can be delivered to the building site, where the worker can erect them as required.

To concrete these stumps on site we had steel forms of various length, and these forms were assembled together with steel pins, so, we would assemble these steel forms and then start to mix concrete, we had also make sure that the stumps foundations were exactly in the right place by using the marked profiles and tight line between them.

In this case, it was an easy job for the fellow that is mixing concrete, but a lot harder for the blokes that had to pour the concrete in the stumps formwork and make sure that the stump was exactly in the right place and finished at the right height and were also plumb (perfect vertical position). It was also necessary that some reinforcing rods were placed in the right position with a purpose made devise. These are how we made those onsite stumps in the sixties.

These concrete stumps that we made in the sixties were better that the timber stumps that they were replacing, because it was an improvement as they did not rot with the passing of time and the white ants could not eat them. Here we can say that these concrete stumps on site were easy to make, if you knew the procedure, in fact it was easier to make a set of stumps than to fix concrete stumps made in the factory, as there is no heavy lifting involved.

But although these concrete stumps were easy to make, they are hard to move to a different position. So, to anyone that is going to attempt to dig out these stumps to move them to a new position, they better think twice because I tell you that the part that is under the ground is a lot larger than the stumps at the top. Remember what I said in our previous article, we had to dig a hole sixty-centimetre dip in the natural ground, and at the bottom should be a level base not less than forty centimetres square.

I believe that we have said enough in this article, as we have explained the work that we did on these affordable houses and we will be coming back to talk about more building work in our next article, house building in Brisbane. See you soon.

------------------------------------------

© 2012 F-Menchise

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)