Home energy standards
An energy efficient home can save you energy and money without reducing your comfort or the visual appeal of your home.
In Queensland, there are energy efficient building standards that all homes must meet. New houses and townhouses, and major renovations to existing buildings, must achieve a minimum 6-Star energy equivalence rating. New unit buildings and major renovations to units must achieve a 5-Star energy equivalence rating.
This energy equivalence rating for new dwellings is determined by the design of the building envelope or 'shell' (i.e. roof, walls, windows and floors) and energy saving features.
Software accredited under the Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) can be used to assess your home's thermal performance at design stage and determine your home's energy equivalence rating.
The more stars the more energy efficient the home, and the more you'll save on ongoing home energy costs. There are different options to meet the minimum requirements, including:
- northern orientation of living rooms
- natural ventilation through windows and doorways
- shading with wider eaves and awnings
- insulation in roof space and walls
- treated windows
- light coloured roof and walls
- ceiling fans
- well designed outdoor living areas.
Talk to a professional
It's best to discuss energy efficiency options for your house design with your builder or architect. You can get expert design advice from professionals at Archicentre, Building Designers Association of Queensland or Association of Building Sustainability Assessors.
Talk to your local council about the latest building regulation requirements for your area or visit the Queensland Government website for more information on sustainable housing laws.
Where can I find more information?
Depending on the size of the renovation, each development is required to meet a minimum building energy equivalence rating. More important information on sustainable housing and rating requirements is available on the Queensland Government website.