Incredible energy ratings on our straw bale homes
9 Star Strawbale Home – Our ‘Lickity Split’ home near Brisbane just got a whopping 9 star energy rating without us doing anything different in our design. We’re still gob smacked because we don’t design them to get good ratings, they just work out that way. 8.5 Star Strawbale Home – A two storey straw bale home called ‘the Shooting Star’ which is in a cold climate zone, got rated at an incredible 8.5 stars. It’s this home that won two MBA building awards. We still get impressed by the efficiency of our homes. 8 Star Strawbale Home – Another strawbale home called the ‘Stepping Stone’, which we designed and built in Canberra, got an 8 star energy efficiency rating. So, with a good design, the right building materials, and a solar passive design, you can have a beautiful home and change the world. We won two Master Builders ‘Excellence in Housing’ Awards
The first award was for homes under $500,000 so we were up against all conventional homes. The second award was for Environmental Management (how we build from start to finish). So when we get the soil, clay, sand and water on site and put them into the walls, that’s a good thing as there is little transport and what we dig up from the ground goes back into he walls (literally). That means, low carbon footprint. We prefer natural materials (over using man-made ones), low VOC paints, no termite treated timbers, no fibreglass insulation batts… basically no nasties. We were over the moon at winning the awards for many reasons. Award Winning 9 Star Strawbale Homes is great for our team to see the fruits of their labour. It also good to get natural building recognised
by conventional building standards and being on par with their standards. It’s good to differentiate natural building as being the ‘real’ solution to being sustainable. Man-made sustainable products are really only one small part of a sustainable lifestyle. The more people who build from natural materials the healthier we’ll all be. It’s also good to show that quality workmanship and refined finishes are possible in this industry: the more tradies who build with consistent quality, to a set timeframe and price, the better off the industry will be. Oh, our homes are also Gold Medal rated (eTools)
The rating system looks at the life cycle assessment and green star rating of the home and takes into consideration the carbon footprint from start to finish. It’s an international system of rating homes. For us, ratings aren’t hugely important – we had a home rated two years after we built it and it achieved a Gold Medal rating. The main thing is that we design our homes to be solar passive and energy efficient, and they are getting incredible ratings without us even trying to improve the results. They’re good, too, for the technically minded people, who like to show that these homes do out-perform the majority of homes being built.