A off the grid home is perfect for a pair of empty nesters


A pair of empty-nesters build their dream off-the-grid home

With a stunning location in NSW’s Central Tablelands, the empty-nester owners wanted a home that would set the scene for the next chapter in their lives. “The style they wanted was ‘classic country’ and it was important that the home be fully self-sufficient and off-the-grid without sacrificing comfort and luxury,” says Michael Christie, Housing Consultant, PAAL Kit Homes.

“Just as importantly, the home needed to be large enough to accommodate visiting adult children and members of their extended family; also, the owners wanted it oriented to take advantage of the spectacular views of Mount York and the surrounding Hartley Valley.

“We worked on plans with the clients for about two months before they settled on a design that worked with the steep site’s contours, maximised the view, and appealed to their sense of style,” explains Michael. “Plans were then drawn up for submission to Council and within three months the clients were able to get underway with the construction using a local builder.”

This is a home designed for the local conditions, so it has a high-tensile steel frame and is wind rated to N3 (159 km/h). The cladding, while being a traditional weatherboard style, is designed for BAL 40 fire conditions (the second highest fire rating) and the roof is of durable Colorbond. With an eye to sustainability, the house has hydronic in-slab heating and solar power with battery storage.

“We offer full customisation of all our designs and this home was no exception,” adds Michael. “Not only was the design adapted to meet the site conditions and bushfire requirements, just about every part of the standard design was altered in some way to meet the clients’ needs. The kitchen, bathrooms and living areas were all changed during the initial design consultation process.

“The resulting kitchen is warm, inviting and perfectly designed for large-scale entertaining. In fact, the owners recently hosted a wedding for their son and 100 guests. As for the family and meals area, this has a vaulted ceiling with large doors opening onto an expansive covered alfresco area looking out over the valley to the mountains and offering easy access to the adjacent lawn area.”

In summing up, Michael says, “A kit home was the ideal choice for the couple because it allowed them to build a fully customised home for the cost of a standard project home. They achieved this by keeping the builder and materials supplier separate, a strategy that ensured they stayed in control of the budget.”


For more information, 

PAAL Kit Homes 


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