This section provides helpful hints for designing or renovating a home to make it more energy and water smart.
Whether you are building, renovating or wanting a more comfortable and eco-friendly home, there are a number of options to reduce your energy and water consumption and have a healthier and greener home. Around 26% of the energy used in a house is for heating and cooling. In addition, 31% is used for heating water and 16% for refrigeration. There are simple, cost effective ways to reduce your energy bills along with some replacement strategies in existing homes that will save you money over time.
Reach for the stars when building and discuss with your builder the best ways to achieve a 6 star energy rated home. The 6 star energy rating will be in full effect from 1 May 2012.
For more information on designing for energy and water efficiency:
A healthy sustainable home is one that uses mostly natural ventilation and sunlight for lighting, heating and cooling and mostly avoids volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in its construction and furnishings.
For home builders read the attachments located in the top right to assist with sustainable design:
Sustainable Residential Design Policy
Sustainable Residential Design Guidelines
Sustainable Residential Design Checklist
Also visit the Planning & Building webpage.
Existing Houses - Retrofit
If you have an existing house there are a number of things you can do to help achieve a home that uses less energy and water. Some of these may be through alterations, additions or renovations, though some may be assisted by simple behaviour changes.
Assess your home: borrow one of thefrom any of the City of Melville libraries for three weeks. These will help with determining the orientation of your home, where you are losing/gaining heat as well as how much energy your appliances are using and they come with lots of useful information.
Identify any changes that may assist with reducing heating and cooling requirements and saving energy. Look at your lighting, floor coverings, window treatments, any gaps around windows and doors, ceiling insulation and appliances as a starting point. Water savings can be found by detecting any leaks, changing tap washers, replacing old toilet cisterns, exchanging your water guzzling showerhead for a more efficient one and recycling greywater for your garden. There are a number of website resources that may help with this including the, , and .
Make the changes when you are able to.
Don't forget simple bahavioural changes like turning the lights off when not in the room and turning appliances off at the wall. Theis an excellent source of information and inspiration.
In addition, visit the Take Action section to find out what is happening at a Federal and State Level, as well as what programs the City of Melville are running.