An African starter home

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Hi Jonno

I live in Zambia and am very interested in your designs. (We can buy Farmer’s Weekly at Shoprite stores here.) I’m planing to move to my 20ha farm and would like you to assist me by designing a three-bedroom house. I would like a sketch for a farmhouse built with concrete blocks and bricks made from anthills, plus a thatch roof. I will also need a borehole, two servants’ quarters, a chicken run, piggery and fish pond. My farm is situated alongside a road, and I also want to put up a toilet the public can use after paying a fee, some shops to sell farm produce and a place to relax, possibly with a cocktail bar.

Thanks in anticipation

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Hi Juston

Thanks for the request to assist with your envisaged development. I require a more detailed explanation of your needs, but decided to try and visualise and improvise on your basic description. The sketch layout shows a three-bedroom house in keeping with traditional African home building. It consists of the initial accommodation required for a young family starting off, but with space for further additions as the family grows – bedrooms two and three with connecting passage on the sketch.

The separate toilet between the two bedrooms can be converted into a passage that can be extended to serve another pair of bedrooms further back. This type of building is called a “starter-home”. I’ve included the fishpond partially inside the home, with a glass wall barrier separating the inside from the outside. As for the chicken run and piggery, I thought that they should be a good distance away from the house, as they’re a bit smelly! Your pay toilets, farm stall, cocktail bar and servants’ quarters should also be away from your private family home. Let me have more specifics on the public facilities and their placement, and I’ll respond further.Floor plan

All the best, Jonno

Author John Smith, better known as Jonno, can be contacted at
Hillbilly Homes,
PO Box 255,
Estcourt 3310,
Tel 036 352 3178,
fax 088 036 352 3178,
Cell 082 412 4459
Email [email protected].
Please provide details of the proposed development and any building material you have access to.