Cottages NZ homes ideal for retirees
Changes to Hastings District Council’s District Plan have opened an opportunity for local builder Cottages NZ, which has recently built a 100sqm home for a retired couple on the site of their previous home.
Cottages NZ sales manager Kim Nilsson says Dennis and Annette Thetford’s daughter and sonin-law were looking for a new family home, and mentioned they wished they could ﬁnd a place like their parents’.
“They had a lifestyle block at the back of Bayview where they had been for 20 years,” he says. “They loved the spot. They offered to sell it to their daughter and son-in-law, and started thinking about where they would live.”
One of Cottages NZ’s regular subcontractors was at the property doing some drainage work, and when he heard of the family’s dilemma, he suggested they put a cottage on the same property.
“They came in and had a look, and we talked about some changes to the District Plan that allow for a supplementary dwelling of up to 100sqm, which is not a bad size for a retired couple.
“They now have a brand new, spacious home, nicely appointed, and they can now live the twilight of their years on the property they love, close to their family and grandchildren.”
The Thetfords’ new home has been designed to cater for retirement years, with ﬂ at ﬂoor showers and wide passageways.
As a qualiﬁed commercial electrician, Dennis was allowed the ﬂ exibility by Cottages NZ to do his own wiring.
He became very involved in the construction process and enjoyed the interaction with the builders. They enjoyed his involvement too, and the cakes Annette would send with him to work. “This project is an example of where our business is going,” Kim says.
“We’re not just looking at ﬁrst home buyers or worker or visitor accommodation, we’re looking at retired people who want to released their capital from their large family homes and are downsizing, using their money for the rest of their lives, for overseas travel or buying that campervan, but they still need a home base.”
He says the needs of this market are interesting and can be catered to by Cottages NZ.
“They might want to lift their standard of living up with a higher spec kitchen, so they talk to our kitchen guys and our plumbing suppliers to alter that particular component. They end up with the home they want – a nice warm, cost effective house with a few luxuries.”
Cottages NZ builds cost-effective, architecturally designed, timber framed, transportable buildings undercover at a factory and yard in Hastings. “A 100sqm takes about eight weeks to build,” Kim says.
“We’re not subject to any weather issues, and since our buildings don’t get exposed to the weather, they are built weathertight. We can control the environment to allow us to get these buildings ﬁnished quickly and efﬁciently.”
Even the consenting process is made more cost effective, with most inspections carried out at the factory, close to town.
Cottages NZ has identiﬁed another opportunity in modular homes, which can allow young couples and families to start with a small two-bedroom home and add bedrooms or bathrooms as their family grows. The crucial part Kim says is to plan early to allow for future expansion.
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