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The Australasian by NewsServices.com


Why insulation is a top consideration when building and renovating

 

The idea of renovating or building is an exciting, yet often overwhelming experience, whether you’re a first-timer or seasoned professional. As a homeowner, it’s important you enter into the project both educated and informed, as there are a few crucial decisions that can be made early in the building process to ensure you build a home that is comfortable, well designed and energy efficient. A key consideration such as insulation will not only improve your lifestyle and comfort, but will reduce your heating and cooling costs for many years to come.

“We have seen an increase in Australian homeowners moving towards more sustainable living,” says Warren Stewart, Head of Product Development from Bradford Insulation. “Most recently, there's been a buzz in the Australian home construction industry about the introduction of the new 7-Star rating by the National Construction Code (NCC). Simply put, this new rating system is all about ensuring better energy efficiency, which translates into numerous advantages for homeowners, including reducing energy consumption, lowering energy bills, healthier homes, as well as making significant strides in Australia's collective efforts to combat greenhouse gas emissions.”

The new NCC 7-Star rating, set to take effect from 1 October, 2023, is a win for homeowners and a move that brings us one step closer to a more sustainable and energy efficient future. By embracing energy efficient insulation solutions, homeowners can go beyond merely ensuring a comfortable indoor temperature.

A more comfortable and healthier home

A well-insulated home offers a more comfortable living environment all year round. Whether it's scorching hot or chillingly cold outside, good insulation helps keep your home at a more comfortable temperature. Some insulation also reduces noise transmission, creating a quieter, more peaceful living environment.

A major benefit of insulation is a reduced susceptibility to trapped moisture from condensation that can lead to mould and mildew in your home, and the consequent health risks for your family, and long-term structural damage to your home. By including anti-condensation insulation products and selecting an effective roof ventilation system when building, the structure of your home can breathe and effectively release moisture. For asthma and allergy sufferers, Bradford insulation products are approved by the National Asthma Council’s Sensitive Choice program, meaning they are asthma and allergy friendly building products.

Energy cost savings

Approximately 40% of household energy is used for heating and cooling an average Australian home to achieve thermal comfort. The mandatory minimum levels of insulation in newly constructed homes assist in reducing heating and cooling costs by around a third, but experts agree that higher levels of thermal insulation can reduce energy costs even further.

The 7-Star rating is designed to reduce energy consumption in homes by including better insulation, glazing, sealing, and smart solar design. This means less reliance on your heating and cooling systems, significantly reducing your energy bills. With a 7-Star rated home, there’s a 18-25% improvement in energy efficiency compared to the older 6-Star rating.

Eco-friendly living now and in the future

As we become more conscious about our impact on the environment, living in a home that is energy efficient aligns with a more sustainable lifestyle. With the 7-Star rating, your carbon footprint can be reduced by using less energy for heating and cooling, which ultimately contributes to a greener planet.

As regulations continue to evolve in this direction, a 7-Star rated home is staying ahead of the curve, making it a smart choice for homeowners planning for the long term.

Improved resale value

A home with a higher star rating could potentially have a higher resale value. As energy costs rise and home buyers become more environmentally conscious, energy efficient homes are becoming more attractive in the real estate market. Owning a 7-Star rated home could be a solid investment for the future.1

Top tips when speaking with your builder

To help homeowners understand the new 7-Star Rating system and leverage the benefits for everyday living, here are some key questions to ask your builder:

  1. How the 7-Star Rating will impact the design of your new home. The 7-Star rating is not just about adding insulation; it’s about smart design and making the most of the natural environment to minimise energy usage.

  1. Understand the insulation material that will be used. Not all insulation is created equal. Bradford Gold™ High Performance insulation is an example of a product that not only has been independently tested but is also certified to Australian standards, meeting or exceeding compliance guidelines for heat flow resistance. This certification also assures fire safety, environmental sustainability, and health considerations.

  1. Ask about the orientation of your home. A well-oriented home takes advantage of the sun's path and prevailing winds, which is a key part of achieving a 7-Star Rating.

  1. Inquire about the type of windows that will be installed. Energy efficient glazing works hand-in-hand with insulation and can significantly reduce heat loss in winter and heat gain in summer.

  1. Understand the overall insulation plan of your home. For example, adding insulation to the roof space and walls during construction is standard practice for architects, designers and builders, however insulating the sub-floor space is one of the most overlooked areas for new and renovated homes. Smart ventilation solutions can assist with moisture control and prevent condensation, mould growth, and poor air quality. Proper sealing can prevent drafts, reducing the need for artificial heating and cooling.

 

For details about how Bradford Insulation products can help make your home more energy efficient, check out https://www.bradfordinsulation.com.au/.

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