Real Estate

How to design, build and plant a dream home in FNQ in 2019

Written by The ReReport
As seen in the Source link, written by on 2019-01-13 23:00:33

A NEW year has brought a whole new focus on home and garden building and design but a yearning to bring the outdoors in will always remain a staple of Far North Queensland residences.

From open-plan areas to functional spaces that flow, vibrant greens and earthy tones, to an understanding and appreciation of the beauty of the tropics, these are the top trends you’ll be seeing more of during 2019.


No one wants to be stifled in a hot and stuffy house, especially at this time of year when the humidity bears down almost as hard as the monsoonal raindrops.

Koru Building Contractors’ Tony Newman said seamless indoor and outdoor spaces, especially in renovation projects was hotting up.

Boxy Queenslanders were often top of the list to undergo makeovers which often made the veranda a vital part of the whole house.

Mr Newman said a second lounge or media room would remain popular throughout 2019 as well.

“With these, they want light and airy spaces, a lot of people go white or paint in a neutral colour to help expand the space and bring colour in through furnishings,” he said.

“Kitchens, bathrooms and outdoors areas are our three major renovation inquiries and the longer galley-style kitchen all the way down one wall instead of a U- shape is quite in at the moment.

“It gives the room a nicer flow, and means the kitchen can flow through to the outdoors or to a deck area.”

And, forget a bathtub.

“Unless it’s a real family home people aren’t fussed on having a bath. A lot of people are looking to outdoor bathrooms though with an outdoor bath, screened by trees. I think everyone wants an ensuited master bathroom too, so two-bathroom homes are just the norm,” Mr Newman added.


Clever storage and earthy materials will be a feature of more and more homes this year according to ID Blinds and ID Living interior decorator Renee Bird.

She said a focus on design bringing convenience to a busy lifestyle, especially in kitchens, was leading to a “real shift” in how people live with concealed storage areas and integrated appliances all part of the change sweeping over the industry.

”That extends to furniture as well, which can really make or break a space,” Ms Bird said.

“It could be a chair and a drink table combined, or a coffee table with storage to hide remote controls.


Renee Bird, Interior decorator, at ID Blinds and ID Living on Spence St with some walpaper and curtain samples that Cairns people are choosing to spruce up their homes with. PICTURE: STEWART MCLEAN

“Interiors are also reflecting a connection with nature and there is a call to use timber or marble to make your home feel more welcome and calming. Timber is timeless, and there is a trend to go for blackened or oxidised timber, like an oak, rather than traditional sandy or whitewashed wood.

“Natural stone looks, even vinyl planking has come a long way and is quite popular at the moment. Tile-look vinyl has come out and that looks very effective and would be cheaper.”

Green is seeping into colour pallets too, with even cabinetry being painted the colour of the rainforest.


Goodbye concrete, and hello smooth slate, river stones or locally sourced porphyry, if you’re hoping to keep up with landscaping changes in 2019.

Miles of Landscaping owner Miles Mead said the versatile, natural products could be used as edging or paving in myriad ways.

Weekend Gardening for Sep 28

Tropical Foliage Cordylines Picture: Supplied

Cordylines Picture: Supplied

“Bluestone and limestone is beautiful too and they last in all weather conditions. They are usually a lot denser and don’t stick out like pavers which could cut kids knees if you fall on them,” he said.

Mr Mead also urged homeowners to think twice about planting palms citing their messy, falling fronds as just one of the reasons they could create a headache down the track.

“They also take up the ground so nothing else can grow in that area, they’re beautiful for the first couple of years,” he said.

“Smaller tropical plants which are easy to look after and give shade are the best. Colour cordylines and the lucky stripe plant are some of the more popular.”