Comfort doesn’t have to come at a big cost



Inside an energy-efficient, thermally comfortable apartment

Inside the energy-efficient, thermally comfortable apartment

The Fifth Estate

For just $20,000 building designer Simone Schenkel and her husband managed to turn a brick veneer apartment with a miserable 0.8 NatHERS rating into an energy-efficient, thermally comfortable 8.4 star property.

The Gruen apartment, in the outer Melbourne suburb of Ringwood, is a “typical” ’50s-’60s vintage apartment, one of four in a low rise building.

Schenkel says the renovation did not need approval from the strata body, as almost all the changes have been on the inside aside from replacing the windows with imported thermally efficient double-glazed UVPC ones.

They also added a 1.5kW solar system on the roof at the north-facing rear of the property.

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