The Queenslander home is iconic in the greater Brisbane area but considering their age, many could use a revamp. 

If you own a Queenslander, you should consider yourself lucky to have one of these incredible houses… with so much character, unforgettable features and plenty of veranda space, these houses are well-loved for a reason.

However, when it comes to renovating a Queenslander, there are a few challenges that might hinder your project.

Lucky for you, there are plenty of solutions to remedy these problem areas. We take you through what to watch out for and how to push forward:

1. Connecting Indoor and Outdoor Areas

One essential feature of a Queenslander is its elevation. Almost all Queenslanders are built on stilts, protecting the occupants from flash floods and cooling the house down.

However, this elevated style also means that there is a significant disconnect between the main living areas and the backyard. To access the garden, you would need to go down the stairs to go outside, which poses a problem particularly for those with little ones.

To solve this, building underneath your Queenslander as a part of your renovation is a must. 

You can move your kitchen, dining or even bedrooms to the lower level of your house, creating ease of movement between your home and the backyard.

This will also utilise the often redundant space under the house, creating more room for you and your family. 

You may need to raise your house slightly to ensure that you have adequate ceiling height depending on how low your stilts sit.

2. Bringing In Natural Light

Queenslanders often have rooms stacked together and a wide layout. This is great for creating long verandas and the front and back of the house but can also darken some rooms towards the centre of the house.

The covered verandas, while great for the Queensland climate, also contribute to this as they limit the natural light the windows receive.

While this is tricky, it can be solved. Strategically placed windows, skylights, glass doors or walls and creating a more open plan design can all contribute to ensuring light can enter, drastically improving the feel of your home.

3. Dealing With Structural Issues

Due to Queenslanders’ age, it’s almost inevitable that you will come into some trouble with the structure of the house.

Most of these properties were built pre-1946 and many will have issues with its foundations, whether its rotting timber, termites, water damage or uneven floors.

To solve this, hire a reliable and quality builder to ensure that your house’s foundations are solid and won’t cause you problems down the track.

4. Staying Within Regulations

Many Queenslanders are protected due to their age and cultural significance. Before you begin your renovation process, check to see if your home is listed on the Queensland Heritage Register or in a suburb where there is “Character Protection” or heritage overlay legislation.

If it is, you will need to get the proper permits from the council before you begin building. 

The team at JM Homes can help you obtain these and stay within regulations during your renovation, taking it off your plate!

5. Poor Layout

The layout of the rooms in Queenslanders don’t often optimise the potential of your home and may not suit your lifestyle.

For example, kitchens and living areas are usually toward the front of the house and the toilets and laundry are often located near the back garden as that is where the septic tanks were once located.

This doesn’t make sense with your modern lifestyle. Having your kitchen and living areas at the front of the house doesn’t get the most amount of sunlight throughout the day, especially at the times when you want it most. Additionally, the laundry and toilets take up valuable space and sunlight that could be better used for entertaining. 

To solve this, you can use what you have but modify the layout to your advantage.

A good idea is to put the kitchen toward the back where the plumbing facilities already are. This creates an entertainment area that links to the back veranda and utilises the day’s sunlight. 

With clever building and design, anything is possible…

Have a project in mind? Talk to the team at JM Homes to get your dream home underway.