Seventies Homes

There were almost 280,000 homes built in the 1970s ranging from simple ‘spec homes’ through to larger and more expensive homes during the expansion of affluent suburbs. If they are still in original condition most people will want to complete renovations to update the house as fashions have changed and wear and tear will be evident in items such as floor and wall coverings.

Typical features of 1970’s homes include open plan living, plasterboard walls, softboard ceilings, lower pitched metal roofs, internal access garages, timber cladding and concrete slab foundations. Many 1970’s homes have been modified to increase living areas and to add a second bathroom. A typical speculative house would have a single open-plan living, dining, and kitchen, 3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom, and one laundry.

Common issues to look for when purchasing a seventies property are listed below:

  1. There were a large number of building materials used in the seventies that contained asbestos including:
  • Cladding,
  • Fencing,
  • Hot water pipe lagging,
  • Electrical meter boards,
  • Pressed metal roofing tiles,
  • Insulation,
  • Soffits,
  • Textured ceilings,
  • Vinyl backing.


If the materials are kept in good condition they will pose little risk, however, if they are damaged or worn it increases the risk of asbestos fibres being released. Removing products that contain asbestos can be expensive and in most cases is required to be completed by a professional.

  1. Generally, seventies houses had little or no insulation installed. If insulation has not been updated it most likely will not meet the new rental standard that are coming into effect 1st July 2019. Foil Sisalation was sometimes used to insulate the subfloor, this insulation can no longer be installed or repaired due to the electrocution risks associated with it. Insulation can be costly to install although significantly benefits the energy efficiency of a home.


  1. If purchasing a dwelling that was built in the seventies it is always recommended that the plumbing is checked to determine if Dux Qest is present. Dux Qest is a product that was available in the 1970s and 1980s – and removed from the market in the mid - late 1980s as it has a tendency to burst at the junctions.


  1. Aluminium windows became popular in the 1970s and are generally lower maintenance than timber because they will not be susceptible to rot and the window putty does not need replacing. Aluminium windows may suffer from shrinking rubber seals. If this occurs, it increases the chances of moisture ingress through the areas that have shrunk.

Shrinking rubber seals 1970s.JPG

During our building inspections we find that seventies homes do not often have significant weather tightness issues because direct-fix plaster was not used, soffits were an adequate size and building design generally were not complex.

If you are considering purchasing a home built in the seventies, give us a call today for a full building inspection including the above areas- 0800 487 884. 

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