Achieving a 6 Star Home Energy Rating is not all that difficult if good design practices are implemented during the early design stages of the project. The benefits of achieving 6 Stars and beyond will see many benefits, such as increased comfort, cost savings on energy bills, whilst making your residence more resilient to climate change. In any case homeowners should be looking beyond the minimum 6 Stars as a way of future proofing your home. As a smaller initial investment will pay off for years to come, as electrical prices are ever increasing. Not only will you receive short term benefits but your investment will pay off in the longer term through reduced energy bills and an increased resale value of your home if you decide to sell.
The number 1 key to achieving a 6 Star energy rating is good design. So it is important that your designer bears this in mind during the initial stages of their design concept.
The location and orientation of the dwelling also needs to be considered. With living spaces generally located to the northern side in order to make the most of the Winter sun.
Ensure optimal insulation is used and installed in the following areas: Walls, Ceilings, beneath Suspended timber floors. This will help reduce the amount of heat loss in winter and prevent excessive heat gains in Summer. Insulation also happens to be the most cost effective solution in achieving a higher Star Rating.
Consider the types and colours of materials you use and select to construct your house. As the materials you choose will have a significant bearing on how your building will act and perform. This affect will also be down to its geological location.
Consider the layout and design of your home so as to enhance its energy efficiency. A good and energy efficient design will utilise cooling summer breezes, this can be achieved by locating windows opposite each other to utilise the cooling breezes.
You could also look to minimise large stairwells so as that your home will not loose valuable warmth in these spaces.
Consider the size and location of windows in order to achieve a greater energy efficiency.
Protect windows from the sun, orientation specific. This can be done by using specific shading devices such as eaves, external blinds and tailored landscaping.
Consideration also need to be taken into account when selecting the type and amount of lights installed, as this has the potential to detract from the overall rating.
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