Building a home isn't just for now. It's about envisioning a future for you and your family, and a house that will last and grow with you. Green is the future, as energy prices seem likely to only go up.
Building sustainably does take slightly more forethought and consideration in the planning process, but with care any site can be made energy efficient.
Features To Look For
There is a whole world of green tricks and building designs out there from the weird and wonderful world of self-composting toilets to water conservation systems. Here are a few to think about when considering your home. This list is by no means comprehensive:
- Natural airflow and light: Cross-ventilation in living spaces helps natural airflow, whilst ceiling fans can eliminate the need for air-con. Certain window types assist with ventilation and light too.
- Passive solar designs: Clever architecture, with deep eaves, carefully angled windows, use of heat-storing materials and an understanding of the way in which heat is conducted combine for houses which stay cool in summer and store the warmth of the sun in winter.
- Solar-heated water systems: What better way to exploit the Australian sun than with solar-powered hot water? Modern systems are extremely efficient and will incorporate back-ups, giving you hot water whatever the weather.
- Good insulation: It’s boring and hardly new, but a surprising number of new developments have uninsulated cavities tucked away. Plan now and save later.
- Design for your plot: No true eco-design comes as standard. A good design looks at the topography of your area, and takes into account the natural lie of the land, position of the sun. It will consider the precise orientation of your house and how best to conserve water. It will consider whether you can generate your own energy efficiently, whether by solar panels, wind or geo-thermal solutions.
Green Loans and Grants
Whilst building green can be more expensive, the good news is there are options to suit all budgets and a very wide range of support available. Some banks offer preferential loans to those planning sustainable developments, whilst the government has a range of grants and incentives to support green building, including solar panels.
The best news is the money you will save further down the line. An energy-efficient house is an investment that will be saving you money for years to come.
Here at FHOC, our architects and builders are experts on all this and will guide you through the process of designing an energy-efficient, sustainable home to suit all your needs. Our financial advisers will be on hand to help you discover which grants and loan packages you are eligible to help make your eco-home a reality.