Got the right day but got the wrong week: the 14 houses living in the '70s

Got the right day but got the wrong week: the 14 houses living in the '70s
Got the right day but got the wrong week: the 14 houses living in the '70s

The red brick Cronulla house used as the location of the Vickers' family house in the Channel 10 series Puberty Blues (pictured below) sold at recent auction for $1,382,500.

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The home, last sold 47 years ago, was very much in mint 1970s condition, including the seven different types of wallpaper, patterned carpet, coloured bathroom and wood light fittings.

The television series location manager Peter Hicks scoured for months to find the right house with authentic '70s interiors.

Inspired by the recent Puberty Blues series – which seems set to return to our wide screens again – and the home sale, Property Observer has taken the trip back to find the top 1970s homes that are currently on the market or have recently sold.

The list is mainly populated by Victoria and New South Wales properties, but other states do get a mention. The list is organised by the style features that are indicative of a 1970s property.


Orange and brown

Maybe it was all the John Lennon tinted sunglasses, but people in the 1970s loved orange and brown. The world couldn’t get enough – orange and brown pants, orange and brown carpet, orange and brown typewriters and orange and brown homes.

21 Trentwood Avenue, Balwyn North, Vic 3104 (pictured above)

In excess of $1 million

The fire, the furniture, the brown carpet and the wood veneer show this house's makeover in the 1970s. Walk into the open home day and you’ll likely hear Bee Gees’ Trafalgar pumping from the stereo. This home was actually built in the 1960s but underwent a hefty renovation in the '70s. The property was designed by Kevin Borland. The four-bedroom brick home is listed through Dawn Kay from Fletchers BALWYN NORTH.


Exposed Brick

Brick was best, according to the 1970s psyche. Big, imposing (orange) brick walls were a key feature of Australian homes in the 1970s.

8 Vernon Street, Hunters Hill, NSW 2110 (pictured above)
$3.49 million

There’s a big brick wall here, but the owners have adorned it in true '70s style with a lovely big hanging tapestry. The roof angles down leading onto a concrete entertainer's deck. Settle back in the period futon and get groovy, man. The home comes with 180-degree views over the bay. It comes with its own pool and private access to the bay. Nicholas McEvoy from McGrath Hunters Hill is listing the property.

19 William Edward Street, Longueville, NSW 2066 (pictured above)
$1.59 million

The interior is stylistically similar to the previous property. The dining room here is framed by the big brick walls to give a homely feel. The Longueville property comes on 1,250 square metres for the true Australian dream lifestyle. It is being listed by Mary-Anne Fitzgerald from Blunts Real Estate Lane Cove.


Tiled kitchens and bathrooms

Big tiles were the big thing back then, and who can blame them? Patterened tiles, striped tiles, orange tiles – anything to make a statement.

112 Hooke Street, Dungog, NSW 2420 (pictured above)

Big and bold are the words to describe these tiles. The fern in the upper right does inject some greenery into the earth tones of the bathroom. The brick home is in Dungog, North of Newcastle. Natasha McElwaine from McElwaine Hunter Valley is selling the property.

833 Park Street, Brunswick, Vic 3056 (pictured above)


Very similar tiles here, maybe Waltons was having a sale at the time. Offered for the first time in 28 years, this property is a blast from the past. Property Observer particularly likes the lovely blind just peeking into the frame. Property Observer notes it's not quite authentic though, with a complete lack of any Macramé. The solid-brick Californian bungalow is close to Melbourne and comes with the classic three bedrooms and two bathrooms. Chris Goulding from Barry Plant Brunswick is selling the property.


Billiards and pool rooms

Someone in the 1970s decided that billiards and pool rooms were a good idea. The space-hungry rooms are a common feature of homes of this period.

5 Belmont Street, Surrey Hills, Vic 3127 (pictured above)

$1. 4 million

There’s ample room to play a few rounds of pool around this table, there’s no need to buy shorter cues, which are so often required in pool rooms. The generous space is a sure feature from the '70s. The four-bedroom Surrey Hills home comes has no shortage of space at all, as it’s set on 1,139 square metres. It’s being sold by Loger Chen and Janssen Xiang from Aussie Home Real Estate Kew.

18-20 Robinson Place, Portsea, Vic, 3944 (pictured above)
$1.6 million

Big pool room, big tiles, orange stylised furniture – this has to be the feature home on our list. The wood-panelled roofing leading out into the entertaining area is lovely. The four-bedroom home comes on 2,000 square metres and is close to the local tennis and golf club. It’s being sold by Ilze Moran and Lloyd Robinson from RT Edgar Portsea.



Home builders in the 1970s loved their fireplaces. If there’s one way to quickly tell if a home was built in the 1970s, rush to the lounge room and see if there’s an open fireplace. Big and brick and likely orange.

6 Clarke Street, Walkerville, SA 5081 (pictured above)
$875,000 to $950,000
Built in the 1970s, this home was recently renovated to bring it up to date. But it’s been tastefully done and keeps its original styling cues. White walls started to creep into fashion in the 1970s as architects advocated large modern-looking rooms. The original builders took an interesting take on the requisite 1970s fireplace and have made it a feature point of the open-plan dining and lounge room. It’s being sold by Judy Morris from Klemich Real Estate.

13 Small Street, Woollahra, NSW 2025 (pictured above)
Above $2 million

There’s some '70s-influenced styling here with the fireplace and the Organic-style architecture. It comes with views over the city skyline, which would have looked somewhat different in the 1970s. The rest of the house is furnished with period furniture and detailing. It’s being sold by Walter Antonelli from Raine & Horne Double Bay.


Trippy patterns

Stare at some of the patterns around in the 1970s long enough and you’ll eventually lose your mind. There’s nothing subtle about the carpets and wallpaper around at the time.

44 Watts Parade, Mount Eliza, Vic 3930 (pictured above)

What a kitchen. Property Observer likes the styling and the big floor tiles. The kitchen is in a three-bedroom Mount Eliza home absolutely full of 1970s furniture. The property is being sold by James Crowder from Community Real Estate Mount Eliza.

5 Sheoke Grove, Sorrento, Vic 3943

This Sorrento property hasn’t been touched in a long time. There's wonderful wooden bedheads. The zig-zag carpet is unrelenting yet mesmerising. And then to complete the magic eye illusion, it’s offset by the fluoro curtains. The brick home is set on 776 square metres of land. It’s being sold by Liz Jensen from Kay & Burton Portsea.


97 Yarrbat Avenue, Balwyn, Vic 3103 (pictured above)
$ Undisclosed

This home was originally designed by  Dale Fisher, an Australian architect active through the 1970s. It has made use of the classic '70s wallpaper, but it’s used in restraint and works quite well. The interior of the home is like a museum of 1970s styling. The four-bedroom home comes on 1,812 square metres of land in Balwyn. It recently sold through Diana Healy from Jellis Craig Hawthorn.


Outdoor spaces

Entertaining has always been an Australian tradition, and this was no different in the 1970s. The spaces there were built to 1970s tastes.

7 Helenslea Road, Caulfield North, Vic 3161 (pictured above)

This is a classic 1970s outdoor space. The deck is concrete tiled, and the angled roof comes down to give a small timber-clad covering to half of it. The patio looks out to the expansive backyard and into the family room. The home has been updated over the years, but the undeniable soul of the '70s remains. The four-bedroom Caulfield North home is set on 835 square metres and comes with a kosher kitchen and an undercover car port.

30 Nelson Street, Bedfordale, WA 6112

That façade is so '70s it must have been designed right about the time Gough Whitlam was sacked by John Kerr. The façade is from a five-bedroom brick home on 5590 square metres in the semi-rural suburb in the south-east of Perth, Bedfordale. It’s being sold by Sam Saffioti from Roleystone Real Estate Roleystone.

Alistair Walsh

Alistair Walsh

Deutsche Welle online reporter

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