February 27, 2024

Meet Felicity and Shane from 38 Albermarle Street, Kensington

27022024 ASSEMBLE 38 Albermarle Felicity Shane Fraser Mc Nally Header 001

We paid a visit to Felicity and Shane’s home at 38 Albermarle Street in Kensington to see what life’s been like since they moved in. From their energy-efficient home to the benefits of our purchase pathway, we chatted about how an Assemble home has been the right decision for them - and Klaus the cat too!

Thanks for having us. Can you tell us about yourselves?

Shane: My name’s Shane. I'm a public servant and work on Collins Street in Melbourne’s CBD.

Felicity: My name’s Felicity and I am a heritage specialist that works in the fields of history, heritage and urban planning for local government. Celebrating and protecting the history of place is very important to me. That’s something that shines through here in Kensington and one of the reasons that I love living here.

Shane: We lived in Footscray for the last 8 years and we've loved experiencing the inner-city culture of a suburb in transition. It’s much like what’s happening in Kensington and the suburb finding its new identity.

How did you come across 38 Albermarle Street and what made you sign up?

F: I’m a long-time reader of Assemble Papers and so Assemble's always been on my radar as a forward-thinking business in their approach to housing, design and architecture. We knew this was Assemble’s first project featuring the purchase pathway and we wanted to contribute to an innovation that’s needed in Australia’s housing system.

What appealed to you about our purchase pathway?

F: We didn’t think buying a home was possible for us and we didn’t feel good about investing our energy and money into something weren’t convinced of. Assemble’s purchase pathway has given us an avenue to achieve home ownership and our values align with their approach to design, sustainability, location and community.

S: Entering the housing market is risky with housing affordability skyrocketing and the purchase pathway presented a low-risk way of getting there.

Let’s talk inside your home - what are your favourite features?

S: I just love the modernity of our home. The idea that it's fresh, interesting, and sustainable in its design but also still homely. It’s the perfect size for us and Klaus. Another favourite element is the brightness; I love having the curtains drawn and an open facade that lets more natural light in.

F: Yes, the contrast between your typical apartment corridor and the open-air walkways is vastly different.

Have you felt comfortable in your all-electric home?

S: Very seldom will we need to put on the air conditioner as the temperature control is amazing. Whether it’s winter or summer, we get very consistent energy bills with AssembleConnect which is great when you’re saving for a home deposit.

F: It’s a contrast to the last place where we lived which had no insulation. It was very difficult to close off spaces and therefore difficult to heat and cool. It’s so comfortable here all the time and makes a really big difference to your quality of life.

What are your favourite aspects of the building?

S: One of our favourite spaces has been the mutli-purpose Albermarle Room. We've hosted many functions there with friends, family and our neighbours. Everyone's in awe of the space and the views when we invite them over. We also have the Lending Library and workshop to thank for getting our balcony garden underway.

F: I love the little oasis we get to live in. The planting by PopPlant seems to always be in your peripheral vision and adds such character to the building. It was almost render equals reality - which is very rare to achieve!

How has it been getting to know your neighbours?

S: You'll always run into someone you know and it's just so friendly and familiar. We have neighbours from all walks of life, professions and backgrounds but all aligned on how we want to live. I also love the menagerie of pets living in the building – it’s such a pet-friendly community and animals really bring people together.

F: One of the first activities organised with some of our neighbours was a kayaking trip along the Maribyrnong River. It was a great way to get to know everyone.

And you’ve found Kensington to be a well-connected place to live?

S: From leaving my front door to the top of Collins Street, it's a 20-minute commute. I can't think of a more convenient location in terms of public or active transport.

F: It’s been easy for me to jump on the highway or on public transport to get to the western suburbs. A special shout-out to the 402 bus - my favourite bus route in all of Melbourne!

Do you think you’ll purchase your home?

F: We absolutely plan to purchase our apartment. Our experience has been fantastic and it's something that we still want to invest in.

S: We feel lucky to be able to have this opportunity and we want to be in the best position to purchase our home. We love this apartment, the community around us, and that Kensington is only getting livelier by the day.

And who wants to speak on behalf of Klaus – how has he been enjoying his time?

F: Klaus loves it. His favourite spot is being on his Tatami matt on the balcony and munching on the plants. In the summer he usually gets very uncomfortable but hasn’t been impacted since moving here. It’s the perfect place for him.