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Home & Garden (900 Stories)

Brendan stamps his tiny feet on stamp duty

By 21 January 2014

For a man with no real power the Liberals’ Brendan Smyth uses the word “must” rather a lot.
In this case he’s telling the government to eat crow over their incompetent stamp duty fiasco:
The ACT Labor government must take every possible step to make sure homeowners are fully compensated after accepting that some of its stamp [...]

ACT Government Committed to Unaffordable Housing

By 20 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

The good folk over at Macrobusiness have been doing an excellent job over the past week highlighting the ACT Government’s outrageously terrible and damaging policy when it comes to supplying land for new homes (see here, here, and here).
Despite strong population growth, stratospheric house prices, and the ACT Auditor General finding the ACT’s land release [...]

What is a good rent yield for investment properties in Canberra?

By 20 January 2014

Hi,
New to Canberra. Thinking about purchasing a property as an investment. I’ve been told that investment properties are good here because you get high rental rates.
However, looking at your allhomes site, it seems that rental yields are quite low. Properties that are selling for 500k may be only renting out for $460-470 p/w. If it’s [...]

Empty rental property numbers surging ahead

By 20 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty survey of AllHomes rental listings has some bad news for property owners with houses piling into the market chasing renters who just don’t seem to be there right now.
It will be interesting to see if the start of graduate and student years does anything to remedy this.

The sunflowers have great timing. Images of Canberra

By 20 January 2014

The first of my sunflower crop.
Another couple of dozen are all set.
Just beautiful
[ED - Got an image of Canberra you want to share with the world? Email it in to images@the-riotact.com ]

Hot isn’t it? 5 easy tips to keep your house cooler next week

By 17 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

Every year around this time, Canberra gets its annual heat wave and the mercury hits around 40 degrees. Its something of a blessing in disguise to be able to go back to work, and the refuge of an air conditioned office only to dread going home to your sauna-like house. There are a few easy [...]

Canberra’s leafy suburbs 7 degrees cooler than treeless hell?

By 15 January 2014

New Scientist has an article on Australian climate policy (no, this is not an excuse for the nutters on both sides to break free, you know who you are) which contains an interesting aside about Canberra:
In an as-yet-unpublished study, Hanna and her colleagues found that older suburbs in Canberra with more trees were up to [...]

Rental listings surging back into the market

By 14 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty survey of rental listings on AllHomes shows the new year getting back into gear with a big rush of new properties listed as available for rent.
One suspects this is in part some holiday backlog but next week will tell the tale.

Rainwater tank installers in Canberra?

By 13 January 2014

Having thoroughly failed to find enough round tuits to install a water tank myself, I’m considering hiring someone to do it for me.
Have you had someone install a rainwater tank and electric pump (but not necessarily the plumbing to the gutters) recently? Who did you hire? Did they do a decent job?
At this point I’m [...]

Landlord/Agent breaking lease agreement

By 8 January 2014

One week before moving into a rental property, the landlord/agent decided to back out of the rental lease agreement which was signed back in mid-December. The agreement was counter-signed and witnessed by one of the agent’s assistants.
Since I wasn’t going to move in  until mid-Jan, agent had agreed to let me pay bond and 2 [...]

Chippy for Choppa?

By 8 January 2014

I have a carport that I would like to enclose.
Does anyone have any recommendations for getting a carpenter in Canberra to frame the walls?
Cheers!

New dog trucks for when Fido breaks free

By 8 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

TAMS are celebrating the arrival of all singing and dancing dog catching trucks:
Domestic Animal Services (DAS) has received two new state-of-the-art vehicles that will make conditions safer and more comfortable for dogs being transported, while also limiting the risk to rangers by reducing the need to handle heavy or aggressive dogs.
Manager of Licensing and [...]

Recommendations for a good Brickie?

By 8 January 2014

I am after a recommendation for a good Brickie that does breeze block/brick retaining walls at a reasonable cost with good workmanship. 
I’d go stone (using a Stonemason) but that is considerably more expensive apparently. 
Also the wall is to be build at the side of the house so aesthetics are not an issue for [...]

Supply shrinking slightly in the rental market

By 6 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty survey of the rental listings on AllHomes is showing some life returning after the Christmas break.
The total supply in the market is down slightly from recent weeks but still higher than in late November.

Like a strange Santa Claus, an extra bin arrives!

By 3 January 2014 FEATURED ARTICLE

I have lived in share houses with six people and gotten by with just the normal two wheely bins.
My nuclear family of 4 managed fine with the usual compliment of bins.
Living with Goosepig, however, I found we were in a constant battle with overflowing bins necessitating time consuming trips to the tip.
My initial reaction was, [...]

Swimming Pool Water Consumption in Canberra?

By 31 December 2013

Does anyone have first hand experience of how much extra water they used each year by installing an inground swimming pool?
And, how effective are pool blankets really?
Would installing a rain water tank be sufficient for topping-up the pool?
Perhaps someone has done a comparison before and after installing their pool.
After the first fill-up I suspect a [...]

Life with the robot. How I came to love the Roomba

By 30 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

In a desperate and forlorn effort to reduce the amount of screaming in my domestic situation I splashed out on an iRobot Roomba 630 which Costco at Majura Park is flogging for $500.
While the shouting has only intensified the floors, with very very little effort, are now spotless despite living with shedding dogs.
So I thought [...]

Few new rental listings over the Christmas break

By 30 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty tracking of rental listings on allhomes doesn’t have too many surprises this week.
As one would expect there were very few new properties listed over Christmas week (although one landlord found the time to trouble the scorers on Christmas day), while around 200 properties came off the market.
On the other hand the [...]

Malcolm Snow to head the National Capital Authority

By 30 December 2013

It seems to have missed everyone that on the 19th of December Jamie Briggs announced the appointment of Malcolm Snow to be Chief Executive of the NCA:
I am pleased to announce that Mr Malcolm Snow has been appointed as the new Chief Executive of the National Capital Authority (NCA)—Canberra’s key agency for planning and development [...]

Rental listings tighten very slightly

By 24 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty survey of rental listings on allhomes has seen a very slight reduction in available rental stock.
As one would expect there’s an easing of listings and more being taken than are being added, but not by a great deal.

Ascot townhouses in Harrison

By 24 December 2013

I’m thinking of buying a 2 br townhouse at the Ascot development in Harrison on the Flemington rd side to live in with my wife and small child.
I am wondering if anyone has any advice? In particular, how are they during winter?
The weatherboard part at the back seem to lack insulation and you can [...]

Sod turned for Common Ground

By 20 December 2013

Chief Minister Gallagher has joined with Mayor Rattenbury to kick off construction for a Common Ground homelessness facility:
Construction has commenced on what will be one of Canberra’s most significant projects to address homelessness, providing affordable and stable accommodation and support services to the most vulnerable in the community.
Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher, and Minister for [...]

Floriade numbers for 2013

By 20 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Andrew Barr is palpably thrilled with a booming Floriade and expanding nightfest:
Floriade has again achieved outstanding results in 2013, recording the second highest overall attendance, the biggest NightFest and the greatest economic return to the ACT in the event’s history.
A total of 448,987 visitors attended the capital’s 30-day spring festival, making it the second [...]

Real Estate Industry admits 2013 was awful, promises 2014 will be better

By 18 December 2013

The Financial Review is doing some serious cheerleading for Canberra property prices.
After a year of cherry picking numbers to say things are OK there is finally in hindsight a recognition that the last year was not good.
But never fear! Cherry picking the numbers again we can promise happy times are here again in 2014!

Simon wants a conversation about the construction industry

By 18 December 2013

Simon Corbell is kicking off a consultation on Canberra’s construction industry:
The ACT Government is calling on interested parties to contribute to a discussion paper on the regulation of construction design and inspection practitioners as part of the government’s commitment to improving building quality in the ACT, Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, [...]

Behind the scenes on Tennyson Crescent

By 17 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Screencraft media have sent in their spectacular look at all the Richards family have done with their Guinness World Record Christmas light display on Tennyson Crescent in Forrest, raising money for SIDS and Kids ACT.
Well worth a look.

Five beautiful Canberra residences?

By 17 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Property Observer is taking us through “five of the most gorgeous properties currently listed”.
I don’t think any of them will be troubled by Kevin McCloud.
I mean seriously. O’Malley twice?
They are taking votes but at the moment appear to only have two votes, one of which is mine, and I didn’t like any of them.

Rental supply still rising

By 17 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Our quick and dirty tracking of the allhomes rental listings is showing the torrent of new properties into the market has started to ease.
But the total number of properties available has gone up again (slightly) indicating they’re still not getting filled the way they used to.

Paving advice in Canberra?

By 16 December 2013

I need to get some back yard paving done and I’d be very grateful for any recommendations from rioters about who I should use.

Body corporate document inspection fees

By 16 December 2013

Has anyone recently attempted to inspect the documents of a body corporate before purchasing a unit/apartment?
I was quite surprised when advised it would be $155 for the place I was looking into. Does it seem [ridiculously] steep to anyone else?

Simon’s planning a park for Chisholm

By 13 December 2013 FEATURED ARTICLE

Simon Corbell has announced progress in his plans for a Chisholm park:
A vacant block in Chisholm, previously earmarked for development, has moved one step closer to becoming a park today following a move to change the land’s zoning.
“Draft variation 326 to the Territory Plan proposes to rezone Chisholm section 590 from CZ4 Local Centre [...]

Simon’s vision for Tuggeranong

By 11 December 2013

Simon Corbell has announced Draft Variation 318 to make Tuggeranong the Paris of Southern Canberra:
Draft variation 318 to the Territory Plan proposes amending the Greenway precinct map and code to raise maximum building heights in the town centre.
“While allowing greater building heights the variation will protect and accentuate key views of the distant hills [...]

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