Innovative Living Homes Quality Residential Builders, South Australia

Innovative Living is an experienced Quality Builder of New Homes and House Extensions based in the Adelaide Hills. Our passion is to build your Dream Home or House Renovation.

After 25 years in the building industry I have come to appreciate new and innovative building ideas and designs. It's so good to see people being creative with their building projects and thinking outside the square. I believe the most important part of a new home or extension is the client. The people who will live there. Is it really what they want, what meets their expectations and budget? To me the building process is forming a relationship with the client and working together to see their dream come true. It's an exciting industry to be in and I’m passionate about building.
I love my job.

6 Star Energy Rating – Is it a good thing?

On the 1st September 2010, SA will be adopting the BCA (Building Code of Australia) 6 Star Energy Rating requirements for all new homes and additions built. This will apply to all building approvals that are granted after this date –one can only imagine how many applications will be made prior to that date. This rating system is in operation in Queensland and will probably find its way to all states eventually.

What this will mean is that every house plan will have to go through a very rigorous evaluation as to the energy rating of that house. There will be computer programs similar to the ones being used now that will have the parameters of the house entered and a star rating will be given. Some of these programs are ‘NatHERS’, ‘AccuRate’, ‘BERS’ and ‘FirstRate 5’.

The process of rating is fairly complex and too hard to explain here but factors like the house size, construction materials, window size and location and the type of insulation and the list goes on. Gone are the days of simple answers like ‘what is the best type of window glass?’. It will depend on its location and application. We will have to look at planning a lot more carefully. This will be interesting for the lazy developer who picks out a house that will fit on a block of land and gives it no more thought. That just will not work any more.

What the 6 star rating is based on in simple terms is a house that is air-conditioned or heated and its ability to maintain that altered atmosphere inside the house in regards to heat loss or gain from the outside air.

Sounds good so far. Build the house right and you won’t have to use so much cooling or heating. Great! The trouble is that it only addresses the outside shell of the house and not what happens inside that house. The house itself is designed to save energy but what about the people inside. We may feel good for doing our bit for the planet and move in with all our energy inefficient Plasma TV’s, fridges, washing machines, etc. Then we stand in the shower for ages, leave the fridge door open, have the air-conditioning up too high, leave the lights on, leave the curtains open and……. well there goes the energy rating.

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s about time we built houses right rather than trying to fix then later. I just think we have a long way to go before we can feel good about ‘doing our bit’ for the environment. People just need to get back to basics and change their lifestyles.

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