Green IP's

Hi there,

Has anyone taken steps to make their IP's ''greener'' or more environmentally friendly?

Eg. with insulation, water tanks, solar panels, low flow shower heads, dual flush toilet cisterns, those new light bulbs etc...

I believe there are government rebates for some of the above too... ?

I heard also that there are ''Green Loans''... $10,000 interest free for things like external awnings, window glazing etc... ?

What have people here done, and what sort of cost to get these things done (and who does the work)?

It's a nice way for IP investors to give back to the environment!

Thanks.
 
Last edited:
Has anyone taken steps to make their IP's ''greener'' or more environmentally friendly?
Eg. with insulation,
Yes, but only because I could get them all done for free (or more exactly, at no cost to me)

water tanks, solar panels,
No

low flow shower heads, dual flush toilet cisterns,
Yes, but only because I was paying the water rates on dual income properties

those new light bulbs etc...
Yes but only when I was paying the electricity bill on dual income properties where I did not put in separate electricity meters. And you can't buy the 'old' lightbulbs anymore

It's a nice way for IP investors to give back to the environment!
Whilst I do not go out of my way to ruin the environment by dumping waste, not recycling, etc. neither do I get too 'green' about it either. One volcanic eruption like a Mt St. Helens that cooled the planet by 1 deg for a whole year or one big bushfire that lasts a week or so, that releases carbon & heat completely undoes whatever 100's of us can do - so overall I don't get too excited about it ;)

The planet was here before I arrived and it will be here for long after I'm gone, I'm pretty sure. It has been a lot hotter and a lot colder long before humans arrived.
 
My house that will be an IP already has the new light bulbs, fully insulated, rainwater only, dual flush loo, low water showerhead, an awful lot of 4 foot tall trees planted out the back, mulch and a compost heap. Solar HWS was always a prohibitively expensive one, so never happened - we got a tank HWS instead, much cheaper and costs about $10 a quarter on offpeak to run.

Of course, the house has all of these because it was my PPoR and was never intended to be an IP.
 
We have installed water-wise plumbing fittings so that we can pass water usage charges on to our tenants.

We are presently getting quotes for insulation, but the rebate should cover 80% of the costs.

A memorable quote I heard recently: "I'll take climate change seriously when Al Gore gives up his private jet"!!
Marg
 
We have installed water-wise plumbing fittings so that we can pass water usage charges on to our tenants.

Marg, can you elaborate on this? I have one unit in a block of 6 units, where the water usage is split equally b/w all the owners as there is no separate/individual water meters. Can these fittings be used here?
 
How much did it cost you to get low flow shower heads and dual flush toilet cisterns installed?

Actually, for this to be $ worthwhile for me, I need all the other owners in the block to do the same thing.
 
Actually, for this to be $ worthwhile for me, I need all the other owners in the block to do the same thing.

You can get low flow shower heads, cheap as - under $10 but you can also get 'em free from those companies doing green energy deals where they come around & replace all the light bulbs & shower heads.
 
Marg, can you elaborate on this? I have one unit in a block of 6 units, where the water usage is split equally b/w all the owners as there is no separate/individual water meters. Can these fittings be used here?

Marg is refering to something different that recently happened in Qld. LL's paid the water bills but tenants can now be made to pay but only if the IP qualifies as water-wise.
 
water tanks cause more pollution to water supplies through steel and plastic manufacture than the fresh water the water tank will supply. the xeno-oestrogen leached into your drinking water from poly tanks causes menstrual problems in women over a few years of regular drinking use.

the "tin can with some holes in it" shower heads are rated at 9L/min - just the same as that you-beaut $90 4-in1 massage shower head. save your money.

the pollution caused by many "green" products more than outweigh the benfits provided - and considering the short lifespan of things like solar panels, cheap dual flush cisterns and budget long-life (!) globes - you're doing yourself an injustice.

spend the money once, spend it wisely.

build a house using renewable pine with termimesh and plywood cladding - not CCA or injected dursban termite treaments and FC cladding. recycled PVC gutters and cladding is also a great green idea - but again, avoid PVC if you're planning on drinking any stored water. building timber window frames using recycled hardwoods is also a great way to go. avoid the use of steel - even though it is structurally superior. blow-in insulation generaly uses recycled material but the chemical treatments are noxious - but inevitable or you end up with a rats nest or a tinderbox in your roof.

i plan on building a minima footprint home soon - competely and utterly by myself. it's the only way to get what you want.
 
Mine was new build so a bit easier to be greener. I had more gravel, pavers and fake roll on lawn. Also used a drought resistant supposedly 'requires less water' type lawn. Dual flush cisterns that use minimum water. Lights are all enviro. Garden lights are solar. Sprinklers are on timers. Thats the extent of it I think. Apart from fitting two houses on 600sqm.
 
This is probably the right thread to raise a few issues.

Th big M and I are at the moment dancing with our local architect to design a green home for ourselves to retire to on a 10,000M allotment on Kangaroo Island. We are looking to go as close to being green as we can by installing black water treatment (Biolitix), 70,000L underground water resevoir, 4KWh PV system, endemic native flora only, naturally ventilated house to cut the need for warming and cooling.

Will be using Zego for parts of the construction, skillion roof, very high ceilings with louvers at the to to exhaust hot air.

Would be interested to hear from any SS person who have been or is currently involved in a similar project. Depending on interest I might post the plans for interest and feedback in a new thread.

We are expecting to receive the initial concept plans in the next few days. Our guy refuses to use CAD and so everything goes by snail mail.:rolleyes:

Very exciting for us at the moment.:):D

Will keep you posted.

Cheers.


Chrisv.
 
water tanks cause more pollution to water supplies through steel and plastic manufacture than the fresh water the water tank will supply. the xeno-oestrogen leached into your drinking water from poly tanks causes menstrual problems in women over a few years of regular drinking use.

the "tin can with some holes in it" shower heads are rated at 9L/min - just the same as that you-beaut $90 4-in1 massage shower head. save your money.

the pollution caused by many "green" products more than outweigh the benfits provided - and considering the short lifespan of things like solar panels, cheap dual flush cisterns and budget long-life (!) globes - you're doing yourself an injustice.

spend the money once, spend it wisely.

build a house using renewable pine with termimesh and plywood cladding - not CCA or injected dursban termite treaments and FC cladding. recycled PVC gutters and cladding is also a great green idea - but again, avoid PVC if you're planning on drinking any stored water. building timber window frames using recycled hardwoods is also a great way to go. avoid the use of steel - even though it is structurally superior. blow-in insulation generaly uses recycled material but the chemical treatments are noxious - but inevitable or you end up with a rats nest or a tinderbox in your roof.

i plan on building a minima footprint home soon - competely and utterly by myself. it's the only way to get what you want.

I don't think your average person actually uses the water from the rainwater tank as a source of drinking water.
 
I don't think your average person actually uses the water from the rainwater tank as a source of drinking water.


Depends where you are.

In certain parts of the country, like mine, everyone drinks the rain water. In my area, if building a new house with town water, we are supposed to plumb the rainwater to the toilet and garden and the town water to drink and shower. Everyone swaps the plumbing once inspected, as most people want to drink and shower in rainwater, as that's what people have grown up with.


See ya's.
 
Last edited:
water tanks cause more pollution to water supplies through steel and plastic manufacture than the fresh water the water tank will supply. the xeno-oestrogen leached into your drinking water from poly tanks causes menstrual problems in women over a few years of regular drinking use.

Actually, i think plastic water tanks would be made from HDPE, which does not contain pthalates ("xeno-oestrogens"). If you are concerned with this be careful using PVC and polycarbonates. PE (polyethylene) and PP (polypropylene) do not contain bisphenol-A and similar compounds which have been shown to be endocrine disruptors. When choosing plastics, especially for holding food or water, stick to the numbers 4 & 5 in the recycling logo.
And PE is a thermoplastic, so actually uses very little water in production, as well as releatively little energy (especially compared with production of steel or paperboard). All this stuff makes my head ache. There is so much to compare with what is actually "greener" than something else.


the pollution caused by many "green" products more than outweigh the benfits provided - and considering the short lifespan of things like solar panels, cheap dual flush cisterns and budget long-life (!) globes - you're doing yourself an injustice.

spend the money once, spend it wisely.
Absolutely agree, BC. I often wonder about the Life Cycle Analysis of ripping down a perfectly good 30 year old to build an "eco house" with all its attendant production of the things you mention. And my particular hobby horse is how to justify crushing a 20 year old car in favour of new Toyota Pious. The energy that goes into making new cars (let alone the batteries & how to dispose of them, etc) is mind-boggling. The emissions intensity of electricity in Victoria is so high that you'll be doing more damage to the environment when plug-in electric cars come along than putting about in your old Corolla anyway.

Oh, and to stay on topic:
Yes, there is a Gov't scheme where an assessor comes out & provides a free report on how to save energy & water in your house (still waiting for mine to arrive months later...). You can then get an interest free 4 year loan to implement any of the suggestions. I am hoping to stretch the water tank suggestion (which i know will be in it) to sink a bore. With IPs the tenant has to apply, not you (go figure).
 
Rainwater tastes WAY better than mains water, and if the tanks were bad for you I doubt they'd be allowed to sell them, pretty much everyone out here has a tank or several. Over the years polytanks have replaced all the rusty old iron ones. They advertise them as being completely stable.

I'm still trying to work out what to do with my underground tank, it leaks ... I'd LOVE to have rainwater showers again, you can get the cheaper shampoo and have it froth up wonderfully while it all goes flat on mains water.

When we work out how to get some money to build next door we'll be getting solar HWS (despite the ridiculous expense and no rebate), all insulated, native garden, big rainwater tank (at least 20,000L), north aspect to the main living area and I want to get it as close as possible to the house next door for the shade from the west. The house next to it is REALLY high and casts an insane shadow :cool:
 
I'd LOVE to have rainwater showers again, you can get the cheaper shampoo and have it froth up wonderfully while it all goes flat on mains water.

When we work out how to get some money to build next door we'll be getting solar HWS (despite the ridiculous expense and no rebate), all insulated, native garden, big rainwater tank (at least 20,000L), north aspect to the main living area and I want to get it as close as possible to the house next door for the shade from the west. The house next to it is REALLY high and casts an insane shadow :cool:


It's funny that most people have never showered in rain water. When someone from the city comes to stay at my place, they want to know what the special soap and shampoo is that we use, as it seems so silky smooth. They have no idea it's just the water.

Everyone around here now is going for 100,000 litre plus, steel tanks with a plastic liner. We are puting one on the new shed we are puting up. Already have 3 times 25,000 litre on my house.


See ya's.
 
This is probably the right thread to raise a few issues.

Th big M and I are at the moment dancing with our local architect to design a green home for ourselves to retire to on a 10,000M allotment on Kangaroo Island. We are looking to go as close to being green as we can by installing black water treatment (Biolitix), 70,000L underground water resevoir, 4KWh PV system, endemic native flora only, naturally ventilated house to cut the need for warming and cooling.

Will be using Zego for parts of the construction, skillion roof, very high ceilings with louvers at the to to exhaust hot air.

Would be interested to hear from any SS person who have been or is currently involved in a similar project. Depending on interest I might post the plans for interest and feedback in a new thread.

We are expecting to receive the initial concept plans in the next few days. Our guy refuses to use CAD and so everything goes by snail mail.:rolleyes:

Very exciting for us at the moment.:):D

Will keep you posted.

Cheers.


Chrisv.

i just finished one in the Blue Mountains - it was a concept only for a friend of mine who then shopped it around to builders.

they're good fun but the trouble is to be totally "green" the house WILL require maintenance. the minute you're born you have a negative carbon footprint, so really - a balance is nice.
 
Rainwater tastes WAY better than mains water, and if the tanks were bad for you I doubt they'd be allowed to sell them, pretty much everyone out here has a tank or several. Over the years polytanks have replaced all the rusty old iron ones. They advertise them as being completely stable

they are stable - UV stable.

doesnt make them chemically stable.

i'd like to find out if they actually ARE made of HDPE - but i'll bet my left one that they're polyethelene.

it's like reheating milk in any plastic bottle. pthalates are released in the re-heating of plastic - including baby bottles - so i would be seriously concerned about a UV stable polyethelyne tank sitting in the hot afternoon sun - chlorine tablets or not.

the instability of plastic compounds used in the food industry hasn't even been tabled - even though we use it on a widespread basis. not even the CSIRO have a report on it - they do have a report on how oestrogen rich pesticides can help eliminate vertebrate pests though....:eek:

i have to laugh at some people though - i do remeber someone mentioning in conversation how "rainwater was bad for you". amazed, i asked why - apparently because it rots your teeth. how does water rot your teeth? "there's no flouride in it..."....i just walked off laughing, to have him yell out "you calling me a liar"? to which i explained that fouride has no proven benefit to teeth enamel.... and before mains water people had a fine time living on rainwater.... and how rural areas live without mains water... and if mains are so great, why are you drinking bottled water....

a rusty old rainwater tank would leach iron, zinc and tin into the water - all elements severley lacking in a modern diet.
 
Top