A new Wellington show home has proven its high level of energy efficiency by achieving a 7-star Home Energy Rating — the first home in Wellington to receive such a rating under the voluntary initiative.
Future-Proof Building will open the doors on its groundbreaking new show home, built by Primesite Homes, off James Cook Drive in Whitby on Saturday 27 September.
Future-Proof Building professional education manager Jamie Fear says the four bedroom home is clearly modern, stylish and comfortable — but it’s also much more.
“As the 7-star rating demonstrates, energy efficiency is a fundamental part of this home’s design which means it’s warmer, healthier, and better for the environment. We’re delighted with this outcome,” Mr Fear says.
Home Energy Ratings are a voluntary initiative led by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).
Energy efficiency has been built into this home right from the planning stage, with a well planned orientation and windows facing towards the sun. The home was designed to make the most of the sun’s free energy through passive solar design, double-glazed windows, extra insulation to hold in the heat, and solar water heating.
Primesite Homes director Mike Fox says home owners are increasingly looking for solutions around energy efficient, economical design.
“I believe the Wellington show home provides consumers with unparalleled working examples of practical solutions that work today and will meet the needs of tomorrow as well,” Mr Fox says.
EECA chief executive Mike Underhill has applauded the home, saying it demonstrates the importance of getting it right from the start.
“With a new home you’ve got the scope to design for energy efficiency at little or no extra cost. What you’ll get is a home that’s more comfortable to live in, and also reduces energy bills and environmental impacts over the whole life of the home.”
While Wellington’s new Future-Proof Building show home is at the cutting edge of modern home design, the principles that underlie the home’s construction and design are simple and practical, built on the philosophy that decisions that make a home more comfortable today save money in the future and add value to homes in the long term.
“I have seen a worldwide push towards creating more energy efficient homes,” Mr Fear says. “Using the Future-Proof Building principles takes building houses in New Zealand up to the worldwide standards.”
• Brick has been used as a solid mass in many areas of the house. As a thermal conductor and insulator, brick holds heat very well, increasing thermal mass and allowing heat to be stored over time. This also increases the insulation levels for the entire wall construction.
• Pink Batts insulation exceeding the requirements of the building code.
• An air sensing thermostat turns off heating when the desired temperature has been reached, ensuring that no heat is wasted and the home maintains a comfortable temperature.
• Underfloor heating used throughout.
• Many of the show home’s features are designed to improve energy efficiency as well as make the home healthier and more comfortable. The home also features double glazing, a Beam central vac system, a Real Fire 800 Gas Fire, acoustic insulation and a DVS home ventilation system.
• A Solartech closed loop solar water heating system which has the ability to generate up to 75% of the hot water requirement of the household. A $1000 grant from EECA helped with the costs of this system.
Heating the water in the household’s hot water cylinder is one of the biggest energy costs for householders, contributing around a third of a home’s monthly power bill.
• A Home Energy Rating, showing the energy efficiency of the home. Home Energy Ratings are a voluntary initiative led by EECA. They are done by qualified assessors who look at how the home’s design, construction, orientation and systems contribute to its energy efficiency, and what can be done to improve it.
• A Neo-intuitive home technology system that allows householders to control technology throughout the house through one integrated system. Using touchscreens positioned in key points throughout the house, the householder can control lighting, heating, home entertainment systems and access the Internet.
The system also provides extra security for the home, allowing access to security cameras and alarm systems.