Why do we have energy ratings?
All new homes, home renovations, alterations and additions need to comply with the 6 Star Standard in the National Construction Code. An energy report is part of the application process of applying for building approval for new, extensions, alterations building works in Australia.
A Home Energy Rating is a measurement using computer modelling, of a buildings thermal efficiency, (keeping heat in or keeping heat out) given that 38% of a buildings energy use comes from heating and cooling, The more stars the more efficient the home performs, the more efficient, the more money saved on power bills.
Benefits of having an energy rating
A government study into ACT house prices establish that an energy rating increase, of one star would increase market value by three per cent on average, which can add up to tens of thousands of dollars.
There are several ways to increase energy savings.
For a family home it will mean a house that is more comfortable 24 hours a day, in summer and winter. A house that uses less energy for heating and cooling, should mean reduced energy bills, and for the potential for a higher resale value. Environmental benefits can also be seen through reduced greenhouse emissions with a reduction in energy consumption.
Negatives of poor performing buildings
The designs that can reduce an energy rating are long East & West walls with lots of glazing (windows/sliding doors) without adequate shading (eaves/verandas), large passageways & entries as these are connected to living rooms or kitchens/bedrooms which then require artificial heating & cooling, orientation of the house & what rooms face what direction (homes that have the living areas to the North usually rate better as the natural heating & cooling from the sun reduces the amount of artificial air temperature if the shading to the glazed areas are correct) unsealed windows/door & wall vents for gas bayonets.
Dollar value of having an energy rating
6 Star homes are estimated to use 24 percent less energy through heating and cooling compared to 5 Star homes. This will see Australians with 6 Star homes potentially saving a further $100’s of dollars off their energy bills each year. This is only an average saving, with home owners who use their energy features in their home wisely saving even more.