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“Homestar is setting new standards in the New Zealand housing industry”

“Homestar is setting new standards in the New Zealand housing industry”

Homestar™ is a comprehensive, national, residential rating tool that evaluates the environmental attributes of New Zealand's stand-alone homes, townhouses and apartments. Attributes evaluated are: energy, health and comfort, water, waste and more. The overarching objective of the Homestar rating tool is to improve the performance, and reduce the environmental impact of new and existing New Zealand homes, making them warm, healthy and comfortable places to establish a high quality life. 

Some of the criteria set up by Homestar are commonly applied in other countries. This criteria features dual flush toilets, low shower flow, eco-preferred materials, LED lighting, even solar hot water systems. These features can be achieved easily and make a big difference to improving the environment performance of a home. 

Homestar is rapidly gaining uptake in the market, as more projects in NZ aim for certification. 

In order to raise public awareness, several homes have been rated for high Homestar ratings. For example, the Zero Energy House in Point Chevalier, west of Auckland City, has received an 8 star Homestar for its sublime energy efficient design.

Another example is the Vinegar Lane Lot Four apartment, which has been given an 8 star Homestar rating. This home is finished to the highest standard on every level, architecturally, environmentally and efficiency-wise. It is a leading example for what high-density housing could be in Auckland. The building exemplifies desirable, comfortable and sustainable apartment living. 

Probably the most ambitious ongoing project is the Waiheke Earthship, which aims for a 10 star Homestar rating, the highest rating possible. This should lead to a 100% eco-friendly home.

The previous examples are nearly all consulted by EnviroSpec, one of the leading Homestar-specialized Consultancy Companies.

“Building a house or doing big refurbishments costs a lot of money, so when you are doing this it is good to do it properly” says Alex Reiche, Homestar Assessor and Senior Consultant at EnviroSpec. “It is important to choose the right eco-friendly products and materials and to design the thermal envelope to create a warmer and healthier home with lower energy costs and less impact on the environment. A Homestar Practitioner can assist you with advice about all this. Make sure you touch base with them early on in your project, usually at concept design stage is the best time”.

With the rise of public awareness regarding eco-friendly building and high quality housing, we all look forward to see how the New Zealand housing industry could exceed world standard.

More info on the Zero Energy House and Vinegar Lane see http://www.homestar.org.nz/success-stories 

More info about EnviroSpec and Homestar see http://www.envirospec.co.nz/our-services/homestar-services.aspx 

 

 

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