How We Benefited From Sustainable House Day

Chrissy, my wife, and I opened our home for Sustainable House Day last year (September 2018) and had a wonderful experience. We designed our passive solar house 25 years ago and its features have provided us comfortable living and minimal energy costs over a prolonged period. As our home looks very conventional, many visitors were amazed that a home could achieve a Residential Efficiency Scorecard Assessment of 8 stars using traditional brick veneer, gable roof and verandah features expected on a rural living property.

Autumn House
Our day went quickly with volunteers arriving at 9.30 am for a coffee and a walk through to familiarise themselves with our home’s features. Visitors arrived in waves from 10 am and were greeted by volunteers from BREAZE (Ballarat Renewable Energy and Zero Emissions) who took down their details and showed them the key outside features. Chrissy and I were then able to walk visitors through in groups every 20 mins or so and point out internal features, design documents and answer questions. Visitors ranged from young first home buyers interested in exploring alternatives to Ballarat’s volume builder’s display homes to serious sustainability geeks wanting to impart all their knowledge. All our visitors were courteous and appreciative and respected our desire to keep bedrooms and study private.
An unexpected bonus was the free provision by Sustainable House Day organisers RENEW and their sponsors of a Residential Efficiency Scorecard assessment and the 5th edition of “Your Home” which is a fabulous resource book for the design, construction, renovation and maintenance of sustainable homes by the University Technology Sydney’s Institute for Sustainable Futures, commissioned by the Australian Government. These have allowed us to make further improvements to our home that will take it to a 9 star rating with minimal expense.

Sustainable House Day is on again on Sunday 15th September (the week after Fathers Day) and BREAZE again will be recruiting members to assist home owners who register to open their homes.

I encourage all readers to get involved by:
• Consider opening your home which can be done by registering on the sustainable house day website
• Volunteering on the day to help home owners by contacting BREAZE and we will put you in touch with home owners in our area needing assistance.
• Inspecting the many open homes in our region by registering on Sustainable House Day Website.

For further information contact me on 0467 220 442 or email me contact the organisers at Renew phone 03 9631 5421 or visit Sustainable House Day Website

Ian Rossiter
Secretary BREAZE