Homes free to good home

The Courier-Mail - Weekend Shopper - - Front Page - - KYLIE McIN­TOSH

SHOP­PERS look­ing for a free home – yes, free – can find it un­der the Houses for Re­moval sec­tion in Week­end Shopper.

Tech­ni­cally, the house will cost you the price of re­mov­ing it, but if you are pre­pared to move it, then it’s yours.

There aren’t a lot of homes avail­able but, then again, re­moval isn’t for ev­ery­one.

But for those in­ter­ested, it’s pos­si­ble to ob­tain a “free house for re­moval, 2.5 bed­rooms, VJ ceil­ings and walls, weath­er­board, A/C, clean and tidy at Woody Point, re­move at own cost” or “give away free, work­ers cot­tage, good con­di­tion, in­ter­ested party to re­move house, Hol­land Park.”

At­las House Re­movers is a third gen­er­a­tion fam­ily owned and op­er­ated busi­ness that sup­plies, trans­ports and res­tumps homes in south­east Queens­land.

Ac­cord­ing to Erin Wright from At­las, one of the most ad­van­ta­geous things about peo­ple choos­ing to ob­tain a pre-owned house is that they are re­cy­cling homes.

“Re­cy­cling is great for the en­vi­ron­ment. The best thing about our busi­ness is that a struc­ture is be­ing reused for its in­tended pri­mary use,” Erin said. “We don’t have to melt any­thing down or change the ma­te­ri­als in any way. Look at the tim­ber and forests we are sav­ing.

“We run an adop­tion pro­gram where we marry up peo­ple seek­ing a home with peo­ple look­ing to sell or give away their ex­ist­ing home.

“In many cases, peo­ple are will­ing to give away their home rather than have it de­mol­ished and be­come land­fill.

“Not only is this good for the en­vi­ron­ment, it’s also re­tain­ing our her­itage and our way of life. And be­cause it’s a pre-ex­ist­ing struc­ture peo­ple can see what they are get­ting. It’s a much cheaper op­tion and it takes a lot less time to re­con­struct.”

The time­frames in­volved in re­lo­cat­ing a home de­pend on the struc­ture of the home and whether it’s trans­ported in sec­tions.

If it’s trans­ported in one move, it takes about a week to put it back to­gether. If it’s trans­ported in two pieces, it takes two weeks.

While the idea of a home be­ing cut in two to be moved may frighten some peo­ple, it’s ac­tu­ally not as bad as it sounds.

“A home that’s cut into sec­tions and put back to­gether will have the same struc­tural in­tegrity as be­fore; if not more,” Erin said. “We al­ways choose to cut along nat­u­ral joins and en­sure all care is taken when it is re­joined.”

At­las House Re­movers sells preloved homes rang­ing from $50,000 to $150,000 and typ­i­cally, these are older homes re­quir­ing ren­o­va­tion.

“Many of them will need a new roof, kitchen, bath­room and laun­dry. At least this is the ad­vice we give our cus­tomers and any­thing that doesn’t need re­do­ing is a bonus. Ei­ther way it’s still a lot less ex­pen­sive than a new home,” Erin said.

“Peo­ple mov­ing a home onto an ex­ist­ing block will re­quire coun­cil ap­proval and they will need to ar­range for it to be hooked up to sewage, wa­ter and power.”

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