Home Style Green - Sustainable Design and Building (general)

This week I attended a BRANZ seminar titled 'Building for our changing climate'. Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland was the last stop on the BRANZ seminar tour of the country and it's encouraging to think that rooms of designers, builders, product suppliers, building officials and others, were interested enough in this topic to take four hours out of their week. 

A key takeaway is that we're not prepared. We're already handicapped by having insufficient standards in our building code to deal with our current climate. With the forecast being 'warmer and wetter', the situation is set to get worse.


Direct download: Build_Aotearoa_10__Warmer_and_Wetter.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:10pm NZST

Steve Penny is the founder and director at Honoris, a building services consultancy in Christchurch, New Zealand. He is also the host of his own podcast, A Penny for Your Thoughts.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa__9_with_Steve_Penny.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:27am NZST

Many people might be surprised to know that the New Zealand Building Code does not require any consideration of overheating in homes. The energy efficiency requirements in our code are based only on the ability of buildings to keep warm without excessive heat loss. There is nothing to prevent homes from being designed with large areas of unshaded north or west-facing glass.

Siân Taylor is an Architect and Passive House Designer based in Queenstown. She has experience creating homes that are designed to perform well all year round, in some of the most challenging and spectacular locations.

Follow Siân on Instagram and check out Team Green Architect's latest work at https://www.teamgreenarchitects.co.nz/.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa__8.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:15pm NZST

Stärke has been in the window industry in New Zealand since the 80s. They were at the forefront of supplying aluminium frames to the building industry but have recently made some big changes. With a focus on building performance, Benjy Simmons describes the new direction of Stärke as a 'once-in-fifty-year' change. While the company has a long legacy, they've experienced rapid change over the last few years. 

Benjy credits some of the openness to change to him being from outside the industry. He's come in with a different perspective. "We're beginning to see ourselves as a building performance company not just a window and door company", says Benjy. 

Check out the full range of Stärke products along with their education pages and other resources.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa__7_Starke_Windows_and_Doors.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:36pm NZST

Denise Martin has been involved with many of Aotearoa's Passive House projects. As one of the most experienced blower door testers in the country, she's been involved with verifying a range of residential and commercial buildings both in New Zealand and Australia.

I caught up with Denise to chat about how she got into building science in the first place and some of the challenges and opportunities facing the building sector in New Zealand. We also discuss the building code, energy modelling, thermal performance and air tightness.

If you don't already, I highly recommend following Denise on Instagram, TikTok and LinkedIn.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa_5__BEO.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:30pm NZST

I found it confronting listening to Tova O'Brien's guest this past week as she described the experiences of staying in motel emergency accommodation with a young daughter. From my relative privilege (of choosing the right parents and having things turn out ok for me so far), I find it hard to imagine being in this situation. But it's the reality for nearly 6,500 people across Aotearoa, half of whom are children. 

This is an emergency, and the problem is complex. The solution will require more than simply building more houses because the underlying issues are more complex than that.

Related to this is a proposal from the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) to review the building consent process in New Zealand. This is something I'd like to look at in more detail because we must get the balance right.

In 2023, MBIE sought public submissions in response to an options paper on a review of the building consent system. This week MBIE published a summary of the 270 submissions received.

At the other end of the spectrum, I caught up with Jonathan Holmes about living in a Certified Passive House Premium home and working on assessing the embodied carbon in our buildings. 

Other links for this week's podcast episode:

Be sure to register for Reimagine Buildings '24

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa_4_Quality_and_Quantity.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:01pm NZST

Last week, February 22nd rolled around. This was a significant date in the Cutler-Welsh household thirteen years ago when our house was located close to the Avon River in Christchurch. While it was a life-changing day for us, life has gone on. We ultimately lost our recently renovated home in Richmond as a result of the Canterbury Earthquakes, but many lost so much more. 

What would a moratorium on consenting new buildings in known floodplains, tsunami or fire risk areas, look like? How would the resulting plummet in land values impact the economy and further inflate the cost of housing?

But if not now, when? The risks are likely to get higher and ultimately we have to ask ourselves if we're prepared to keep making our stop-banks higher or retreat to higher, less shaky ground.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa_on_Safeish_Ground.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:43pm NZST

There are fundamental gaps in what the New Zealand Building Code covers and how well it covers the aspects that are included. These reasons should be enough to justify using standards like Passive House or Homestar to go above and beyond the building code.

In this series, I'll be looking at reasons why it's better to ask about the value and risk minisation resulting from higher performance standards rather than focussing only on perceived upfront cost. 

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa_2_Principles_and_Performance.MP3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:56pm NZST

As I draft this episode, there's a chorus of cicadas outside my window. The sun is shining and there's a faint breath of a breeze. It seems calm where I live, here in a relatively leafy part of Tāmaki Makaurau. 

But all is not calm everywhere in Aotearoa today, Waitangi Day 2024.

Direct download: Build_Aotearoa.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:21pm NZST

Brad Wills is Director: Strategic Customers & Programs at Schneider Electric. Based in Tennessee, he has three decades of experience with the organisation. We discuss the diverse range of products and services now offered by Schneider as well as the exciting opportunities for smart metering, microgrids, onsite battery storage and more.

Direct download: 273_Schneider.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:01pm NZST

In 2007 when Kim Feldborg arrived in New Zealand he was surprised at how cold and inefficient the houses were, despite growing up in much colder European climates. Originally from Denmark, Kim has built houses in Greenland, Norway, Germany and England. He now enjoys life in a Certifed Passive House he built himself in Taupō.

Direct download: 272_Valhalla.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:39pm NZST

Growing up in a typical kiwi home, it wasn't until he had lived in the UK for a bit that Damien McGill realised we don't need to be suffering through winter in cold, damp houses. Damien is an engineer and knows how things should be put together so they don't fall apart. But he's interested in more than that. In this chat, Simon Cator and I discuss how Damien got into the Superhome Movement. We also review his experience working on his own 'Super-Reno'.
Direct download: 271_SuperReno.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:52pm NZST

Bert Sarkkinen has built a successful timber framing company around a solid philosophy grounded in the style and craftsmanship of a unique and timeless form of building. Bert appeared on the Home Style Green podcast back in episode 176. A couple of years on, Arrow Timber Framing has expanded into a larger facility and Bert has recently released the second edition of his book, The Art of Hybrid Timber Framing.
Direct download: 269_Arrow_Timber_Framing.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:30am NZST

Zola Rose has a vision for regenerative housing as a solution for improving communities and sustainability. She brings diverse and international experience to Aotearoa New Zealand where she now calls Nelson her home.

Real estate has long been used as an investment and a means of making a profit in New Zealand. Zola explains how this has tended to undermine the values that we should otherwise associate with where we live. Housing should protect, shelter and foster community, but we've tended towards the commoditisation of housing.

There are solutions that can help provide better housing and helping people implement these solutions is the basis for Zola's social enterprise.


Direct download: 268_Common_Ground_-_26-03-22_15.20.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:27pm NZST

Mariano Croce is an Argentine entrepreneur who relocated into Queenstown with his young family just before the first COVID lockdown in 2020. He has a background in prefabrication, having co-founded a modular building company in Argentina when he was 24. More than 15 years on, Mariano has created Modulo.nz to provide architecturally designed, high-performance, modular homes built in New Zealand.
Direct download: 267_Modulo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:40pm NZST

Darren O'Dea is a self-confessed building physics nerd. Along with co-founder David Carroll, he has helped to create Speckel, a platform for designing low carbon, healthier, durable and energy-efficient buildings. Having proven popular with architects and consultants in Australia, Speckel is now available in New Zealand. Find out more at https://www.speckel.io/

Direct download: 266_Speckel.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:51pm NZST

Sabine Schoenberg is co-founder of the Smart Healthy Green Living network, a collection of videos and streaming content on everything from tiny homes and carpentry to interior design and gardening. Through her network, Sabine is promoting the 'Do One Thing' campaign to help everyone take a step towards living a more sustainable life.

Direct download: 265_Smart_Healthy_Green.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:08pm NZST

My third conversation with Simon Cator in our series on the control layers of a well-performing building envelope. In this episode, we cover the why and how of airtightness.

Direct download: 264_Simon_Cator_3.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:54am NZST

Hemp is an extremely versatile material. It may have a complicated recent history due to medicinal and other uses, but the benefits of industrial hemp have been known for a long time. Jo Say, co-founder of the Hemp Building Association New Zealand explains why it's a great time to start rediscovering some of the many benefits of building with hemp.
Direct download: 263_Jo_Say.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:54am NZST

Following my previous chat with Simon Cator we continue our discussion about how to construct a good building envelope. This week we're focussing on keeping the weather out. We cover the benefits of a monolithic membrane instead of a microporous one, the importance of being resistant to water while maintaining permeability to vapour, and how to keep everything connected.

Direct download: 262_Weathertight.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:47am NZST

Casey Curtis shares tips on how and why to create airtight buildings, the benefits of mid-build open homes, and using collaborative design to create the right house on any given site.

Direct download: 261_Casey_Curtis.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:56am NZST

Simon Cator is passionate about helping people to build better homes. Prior to becoming Regional Sales Manager for the Upper North Island at Pro Clima NZ, he worked for New Zealand's online architectural products library - EBOSS and also HRV before that.

In this introductory episode, I spoke with Simon about the diversity of his role at Pro Clima and how he talks with people throughout the whole building industry to help change the way we do things.

Direct download: 259_Simon_Cator_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:56am NZST

Matariki is a festival that makes sense for New Zealand. It feels good to respect and learn from the wisdom of those who have inhabited this place for generations. It may have taken us 200 years, but we're creating our own vernacular; our own geographically appropriate culture of design.
Direct download: 258_Matariki_-_3-07-21_20.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:50pm NZST

Germán Molina trained as an engineer in Chile and has recently completed fascinating research posing the question 'what is comfort? at Victoria University in Wellington. Having come from what he describes as the 'warm side of engineering, he's long had an interest in energy efficiency. He didn't expect to be looking so much into human behavior. Germán has made some of the output of his research, freely available - The Atlas of Comfort. Find it at https://buildingsforpeople.org/

Direct download: 257_German_Molina.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:17am NZST

Tim Ross featured on Home Style Green back in episode 191 to talk about getting starting on New Zealand's first Passive House co-housing project. I interviewed Tim again a year ago as we were kicking off the Passive House Podcast, and the Dunedin High Street Co-housing project was well underway.

Direct download: 256_Tim_Ross.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:32pm NZST

Georgia Ezra has a lot on the go. Based in Melbourne, she's the Founder and Director of her own interior design practice Studio Ezra. She also sources and supplies artisan tiles through Tiles of Ezra and bespoke homewares via AHW. Georgia calls herself a 'treasure hunter and market maven'. She has a passion for pushing the boundaries of modern design to create truly unique interior spaces for her clients.

Direct download: 254_Studio_Ezra.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:48am NZST

Danielle King moved into the sustainability field about fifteen years ago and has built up her consultancy Green Move Australia with a diverse range of services. We discuss some of the typical advice she provides to clients and Danielle shares some of her own advice for running a viable sustainability business.

Direct download: 251_Green_Moves.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:46pm NZST

Stuart Lee loves what he does, which is mostly building Passive House homes in Victoria, Australia. He was an early adopter of sustainable building and it was during a Master Builder Green Living event that he heard Clare Parry speak about Passive House. It all made a lot of sense and Stuart enrolled himself on a Passive House Tradesperson course. In this interview, he describes what makes a home really perform, and why he loves what he does.

Direct download: 250_Enerhaus_Stuart_Lee.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:16am NZST

Mike Pickering is building an affordable but high quality, healthy and very energy efficient home for himself and his family on a lifestyle block in Napier. He's taken some learning from his experience building tiny homes and is sharing his project online. Check it out at https://ourlifeblock.co.nz

Direct download: 249_Our_Life_Block.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:02am NZST

Scott Stewart used to fly in high performance aircraft with the Royal Australian Air Force. Now he helps architects, designers and builders with the high performance details of Passive House homes.

Direct download: 248_LAB_Design.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:39pm NZST

Hamish White is Director of Sanctum Homes, based in Victoria Australia. He's a registered Domestic Builder with a marketing degree! Since discovering Passive House, Hamish has been inspired to become a Passive House business. Architects, designers and other builders can be encouraged that there's a market out there and willing clients who want healthy, comfortable and energy efficient homes. I discuss with Hamish, how he got into the building industry and any advice he has for others interested in building better.

Direct download: 247_Sanctum_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:48am NZST

The Hawea Flat Passive House in the middle of the South Island is a very special home. It boasts a number of 'firsts' for New Zealand and the journey of its creation has arguably changed more than just the way Jonathan Holmes lives.

Direct download: 246_Hawea_Flat_Passive_House.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:25pm NZST

Michelle Rohrer-Lauer is an interior designer and business owner with nearly four decades of experience. She works with discerning clients out of her studio in Chicago, but her approach to sustainable design is applicable everywhere.

Direct download: 245_Michelles_Interiors_-_27-02-21_13.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:14pm NZST

Jason Scheurer has always been a business owner and he's always been motived to learn. Today, he and his wife Penny own and operate Best Techs Contracting where they design, build and remodel homes. But not just any homes. I connected with Jason during an online Passive House event recently. In this interview, we discuss how he's gone from an inquisitive general contractor to a newly elected board member of Passive House California.

Direct download: 244_Best_Techs_Contracting.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:21am NZST

Richard Keech lives in a zero-carbon home in Melbourne. After some time in the Royal Australian Air Force and then as a software engineering and consultant in the private sector, Richard now helps people to understand energy. Specifically, renewable energy and energy efficiency. We discuss why it's a good idea to get rid of gas and electrify your home.

Direct download: 243_Energy_Freedom.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:06pm NZST

Susan Inglis has always been a conscious consumer. In 2007 she helped set up the Sustainable Furnishings Council to promote awareness of all the 'stuff' we bring into our buildings. From curtains to carpets, and fittings and furniture, the products we bring into our homes have a huge impact on the environment. The Sustainable Furnishings Council works with industry to help inspire designers and consumers to make better choices about all the products inside our buildings.

John Stulen is Co-Founder and Communications Director for Innovatek. He's passionate about wood and through the WoodWorks brand, John helps the construction industry by promoting the many benefits of engineered wood.

Direct download: 241_Woodworks.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:58am NZST

Dean Hoggart found geology fascinating. He followed this passion hoping for a career in geothermal energy. After becoming a successful geotechnical engineer and drilling holes looking for oil and minerals, Dean realised he wasn't really doing what he'd like to be doing. So he took a leap and changed career. Today, he's a Certified Passive House Designer and is very happy to be applying science to the design of energy efficient homes.

Direct download: 240_Dean_Hoggart.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:35pm NZST

Jennifer Crawford first appeared on Home Style Green when Our New Home Coach was just getting started. Six years on, she's back to discuss her journey and why she still believes strongly in helping people build the right home.

Direct download: 239_Our_New_Home_Coach.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:53am NZST

WD Homes (Wayne Dyet Homes Ltd) is a family run residential construction company, established in January 2005, based in Dunedin.

'Certified Passive House' or 'Passivhaus' Construction has quickly become a speciality for WD Homes.

In this episode, we discuss how Wayne got started as a builder and what he enjoys about building Passive Houses.

Direct download: 238_Wayne_Dyet_-_28-11-20_07.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:54pm NZST

Steven Glaze is an expert in the exterior home remodelling industry and specialises in siding and gutter protection systems. He started in the business working as an assistant at his father’s roofing company at the age of 16 and was estimating projects and managing crews by the time he was 18 years old. Today, Steve serves as Vice President of Sales for Smart Exteriors LLC, an award-winning home improvement company serving the greater Kansas City metro area. Steven works tirelessly to find the best exterior products and to educate homeowners on the best options for their goals and budgets. In fact, he recently wrote a homeowner’s guide for siding that is now available on Amazon.

Direct download: 237_Smart_Exteriors.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:20am NZST

Sheryl Owen's purpose is to create a sustainable environment where everyone can thrive. The environment, says Sheryl, should not be a commodity available for a select few. In order for us to elevate, we must be aware of our impact on the environment and marginalised communities. In her day job and her numerous volunteer roles, Sheryl Owen helps companies find opportunities to link their environmental goals with how they can support their communities.

Direct download: 236_Sheryl_Owen.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:39pm NZST

While on tour as a young US Marine, Josh Oqueli was stationed in Spain for 6 months. In Barcelona, he walked into the Basílica de la Sagrada Família. At the time, he didn't know about the architect and master builder, Antoni Gaudi, but the experience of entering this enchanted space inspired Josh to find out. Gaudi's skill as both a designer and a builder resonated with Josh and led him on the path to creating the Bonsai Design + Build.

Direct download: 235_Bonsai.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04am NZST

Robert Sroufe, PhD. is a Professor of Sustainability, Operations and Supply Chain Management at Duquesne University. His practical experience comes from sustainable supply chain management. He was ‘co-opted’ into the green building movement by experts that he invited him to present to their students about the business opportunities associated with building green.

Direct download: 234_Robert_Sroufe.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:55pm NZST

Living Shelter Architects is a design firm led by Terry Phelan in the Northwest of Washington State. The focus of their work is to provide healthy, resilient homes by combining natural materials with the "gifts of the site".

Direct download: 233_Living_Shelter.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:43am NZST

VCA Green provides green building consulting and commissioning. Their mission is to help clients achieve sustainability goals and long-term cost savings. I spoke with Principal Moe Fakih about where buildings sometimes go wrong and how companies like VCA Green can help with energy modelling, building rating, and commissioning. 

Direct download: 232_VCA_Green.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:07am NZST

How is overlighting of our internal environments, and overshading our cities, affecting our wellbeing? Antony DiMase is a thoughtful Architect based in Melbourne, Australia. We discuss the role that architecture can play in making better places for people and the planet.

Direct download: 231_DiMase_Architects.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:55am NZST

Enveloped provide all the products and systems you need to take an ordinary house and make it a high-performance home. Murray and his team help with the selection and installation of airtightness systems, insulation, ventilation, high-performance windows, heating and water heating systems for homes throughout New Zealand. "Remember, the Building Code is the minimum level of performance you are legally allowed to build to."

Direct download: 230_Enveloped.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00pm NZST

Through his work, Simon Croker is showing that designers can make a difference and be significant wherever they are. From big city firms to small country town practices, everyone can play an important role in creating sustainable, healthy buildings for the benefit of everyone.

Direct download: 229_Be_Significant_-_26-09-20_07.58.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:21am NZST

Architects shape the places where they work. Good Architects are themselves also shaped by their surrounding environment.

Living and working in Wanaka, Beth Chaney is very aware of being part of a place that most people only get to visit on holiday. This acknowledgment provides motivation for looking after the environment through her work as an architect.

In this episode, we discuss how Chaney and Norman incorporate environmental ratings along with PHPP energy modelling from Passive House to create sustainable architecture.

Direct download: 228_Chaney__Norman.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:59am NZST

CarbonLite is a producer of prefabricated Passive House and high-performance buildings, based in Victoria Australia.

Founder Burkhard Hansen explains some of the problems with typical Australian building practices, and how CarbonLite is using building science and experience to produce fit for purpose homes. 

Direct download: 227_CarbonLite.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:59pm NZST

Idealings Architecture is based in Fremantle, Western Australia and serves Perth and the Southwest of the state. Run by Timo and Najwa Bleeker, the aim of Idealings is to help future homeowners and organisations to create healthy, comfortable, energy-efficient and sustainable buildings.

Direct download: 226_Idealings.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02am NZST

After studying Japanese and international business, Daniel Gudsell's plan was to go to Japan and sell New Zealand produced milk, but he ended up selling wood in the South Pacific, an enterprise that led to the creation of Abode Wood.

Direct download: 225_Abodo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:24pm NZST

Murray Robertson took a liking to technical drawing during intermediate school, which he carried on through college. After considering both industrial design and landscape design, he eventually settled on Architecture. He 'did his time' at a few practices and then found himself at McLaren Associates in Edinburgh where he was introduced to the environmental rating processes of BREEAM. Back in New Zealand, Murray spent over a decade at Stephenson & Turner before starting his own practice, Robertson Architecture Design in 2016.

Direct download: 224_Murray_Robertson.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:54am NZST

In 2019 Anne Salmond was made a Distinguished Fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Architects, a high honour available to a maximum of only ten people at any one time. As a trailblazer throughout her career, Anne is a worthy recipient of this title. At one time Anne was told that she was running the largest architecture firm in the country that was directed by women. In our interview, Anne and I discuss her growing interest in sustainable architecture, passive solar and Passive House, Living Building Challenge and some of the exciting projects she's currently working on.

Direct download: 223_Anne_Salmond.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:18am NZST

Simon Wansbrough is the Founder and Director of Third Little Pig, a custom home builder based in Christchurch. We discuss how Simon got into building in the first place, what building better homes means to him, and how he's been able to become more selective about the projects he takes on.

Direct download: 222_Third_Little_Pig.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:23pm NZST

Before Reece Beresford trained as a builder and started his own company, he did some time working on oil rigs. Now he's aspiring to build Certified Passive House for clients in Perth, Western Australia.

Direct download: 220_TruLine_Construction.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:23pm NZST

Viktoria Nikitina is Managing Director of Blue Sky Windows, a manufacturer of high quality, high performance uPVC windows based in Melbourne, Victoria.

With so many locally manufactured options now available, there are plenty of reasons why you should consider windows and doors like these for your next project.

Direct download: 219_Blue_Sky_Windows.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:36am NZST

Simon Cator of Pro Clima New Zealand recently caught up with Kirstie Brown at a sustainable house that Kirstie has built using ECO-Block Insulation Concrete Forms (ICF) in Tauranga.

Simon finds out about the advantages of using ECO-Blocks and how an airtight construction is already contributing to great performance.

This episode and accompanying article originally appeared on Eboss, https://www.eboss.co.nz/ebossnow/pro-clima-intelligent-air-barrier-tauranga-sustainable-home

Direct download: 218_Ecoblock_Home_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:33pm NZST

Browsing the photo gallery on Jeff Bogard's R.E.A Homes website, 'sustainability' is not likely the first word that comes to mind. Can large, luxury houses actually be sustainable? This is one of the topics I discussed with Jeff who's been providing high performance homes for discerning clients in Saint Louis for over fourteen years.

Direct download: 217_REA_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:32pm NZST

I'm always interested in the perceptions of architects and builders who have been trained or have experienced living in Europe and then come to the Southern Hemisphere. Their reaction to typical houses in New Zealand and Australia usually involves a level of disbelief. A common sentiment is that they've never been colder, despite this being a milder climate.

Direct download: 216_Studio_Origami_Architects.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:47am NZST

Joachim Herrmann developed an interest in building biology while working as a teacher. As a trained biologist, he describes the science of life as "endlessly fascinating". We discuss the 25 principles of Building Biology and how they contribute to creating healthy places to live.

Direct download: 215_Joachim_Herrmann.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:59pm NZST

Robert Whitehouse wants to build houses that work the way they should, and he's thinking about how to make them affordable for everyone.

Direct download: 214_Energy_Efficient_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:19pm NZST

The uPVC window market is relatively small in Australia right now, but it's growing fast. I caught up with Kathrin Sender, Managing Director at Integra Windows recently to find out what's so good about uPVC windows and doors.

Direct download: 213_Integra_Windows.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:49pm NZST

Ian Chamberlain learnt his craft as a cabinet maker and joiner in the UK. Nearly 40 years on, he's now crafting beautiful and high performing homes in Taupo, New Zealand.

What are the most important things to ensure you get the comfortable, energy-efficient home you deserve and can afford?

More at https://homestylegreen.com/212

Brought to you by Endurobuilders and LABDesign.

Music attribution: Carefree by Kevin MacLeod Link: https://incompetech.filmmusic.io/song/3476-carefree License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Direct download: 212_Chamberlain_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:22pm NZST

Guy Shaw, Energy Architecture

Guy Shaw of Energy Architecture originally trained in Wellington, New Zealand. But it was his experience working as an Architect in the UK that introduced him to more sustainable design and lead him to become a Certified Passive House Designer.

Upon returning to New Zealand in 2013 he set up his own practice, Energy Architecture. Since then he has focussed on Passive House design and has become an expert on working with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs).


Theory and Practice

During his initial training, Guy thought New Zealand was pretty sustainable. He learnt a bit of building science, as required by most architects at the time, but it wasn't what we'd probably call building science today.

During his time working in England, Guy was more or less immersed in BREEAM and was then introduced to Passive House. This experience put New Zealand practice at the time, into perspective.

Designing and Modelling

Guy credits having some good mentors in the UK, as well as having some good projects to work on, for his knowledge of Passive House modelling. He was able to learn to model using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) while on the job.

He explains that designing and modelling go hand-in-hand. It's a smoother process to design with some key concepts right from the start, rather than being given a design and asked to model it.

"Once you've been doing Passive House projects for a while, it becomes intuitive," says Guy, "... you understand the implications of various design decisions...". He still checks all his designs in PHPP, but Guy says that nowadays, he's really just double-checking the performance assumptions that he's made along the way.

[Tweet ""Once you've been doing Passive House projects for a while, it becomes intuitive." Guy Shaw, @EnergyArchNZ"]

Voice your Values

I asked Guy about how other designers can attract clients who want to go down the Passive House route, or something similar. With Energy Architecture, he's been very clear from the start about what he stands for. And he wasn't afraid to voice these values. If someone is looking for cheap and 'just-to-code', they're probably not going to seek out a practice like Energy Architecture.

Guy has received positive feedback from being very clear about what he stands for. And it seems his clients tend to self-select. He's only had to turn away one job to date.

While he does acknowledge that it may be more challenging for an existing practice to change tack, Guy says that every client relationship starts by explaining what your values are.

Get Inspired

Energy Architecture is based in Wellington and specialises in Passive House design with leading expertise in designing for SIP construction. Check out Guy's stunning work on their website.

Category:general -- posted at: 5:20pm NZST

Energy Architecture is based in Wellington and specialises in Passive House design with leading expertise in designing for SIP construction. Find out more, and contact Guy Shaw via their website.

Direct download: 211_Energy_Architecture.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:48pm NZST

Enduro Builders is quickly becoming one of the leading builders of high performance and sustainable homes in Australia. I met up with Jackson while he was nearing completion of another stunning home in the Adelaide Hills during a trip in late 2019.

In this chat, we discussed how Jackson got into building in the first place and how Enduro Builders is helping to lead an important change in the Australian residential building market.

Direct download: 210_Enduro_Builders.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:14pm NZST

Ben Ingledew has a background in teaching, but following the Canterbury Earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, he took a new path which eventually lead to Livewel Construction.

Livewel Construction focusses on energy-efficient, comfortable homes and renovations. Ben in Certified Passive House Tradesperson and a member of the Superhome Movement.

Direct download: 209_Livewel.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:28am NZST

Aluminium is stable, completely recyclable and relatively abundant, but it's also a great conductor of heat. It's the dominant choice of material for window and door frames in New Zealand, accounting for 90% of the market. But how can you make it a more sustainable choice? OMEGA Windows and Doors offers some good options.

Dyann Stewart learnt computer-aided design (CAD) while working as a receptionist for New Zealand sailor Digby Taylor. With this valuable skill, Dyann soon found herself working as a junior designer for Nulook. From Nulook, she worked briefly with Fletcher Aluminium as a Technical Advisor, and then on to Fairview where she eventually become Group Technical Manager.

She is now the Business Development Manager at OMEGA Windows and Doors where she's already helped the company achieve the significant accreditation of becoming the first Red List Free aluminium joinery supplier in New Zealand.

Direct download: 208_Omega_Windows.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:13am NZST

Design Basics has as unique point of difference. They value and promote the input of women in the design process. I discuss with Executive Vice President Natalie Wendling, and Vice President of Business Development, Paul Foresman; the concept of 'Women-Centric Home Design' and how it can benefit everyone.

Direct download: 207_Design_Basics.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:32am NZST

Green certification of building projects faces multiple challenges; from sourcing appropriate products, documenting and verifying materials, through to minimising, sorting and recording construction waste. Compiling all this information in a form that's useful for the certifying agency can be yet another big challenge. Through Green Badger, Tommy Linstroth's goals is to make sustainability in the built environment as easy as possible.

Green Badger is a cloud-based software platform that helps builders and contractors streamline and automate green building compliance. Simplifying these compliance processes allows builders and contractors to focus on building their building properly instead of chasing paperwork.

Direct download: 206_Green_Badger.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:35pm NZST

John and Nikki decided to put all their energy and attention in the home they’ve created. John gave up the idea of an office in Auckland and saved substantial city rent in the process. Now, rather than having an empty and sterile show home in a remote location, they have their own comfortable home, that's already drawn some attention. And their home is the base of their new venture - a prefabricated sustainable and architecturally designed house called modhouse.

Direct download: 203_modhouse.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:26pm NZST

In 2001, Lindsay Schack and Lindsey Love both started a Masters of Architecture at Montana State University. A decade on, the two friends created Love Schack Architecture together, from their respective home towns in Montana and Idaho. Love Schack Architecture combines Lindsey Love's experience and passion for natural materials, with Lindsay Schack's Certification as a Passive House Institute-US, Consultant.

Direct download: 202_Love_Schack_Architecture.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:26pm NZST

After working as a Building Surveyor for over thirteen years, Nick Gaites is now turning his attention to the positive work of designing really awesome buildings that shouldn't need to the services a surveyor down the track. Nick has become a Certified Passive House Designer.

Direct download: 201_Nick_Gaites.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:04pm NZST

In 2003, thermal performance requirements for residential buildings were added to the Building Code of Australia for the first time. The initial performance requirement was 4 Stars in the National House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) as simulated using the benchmark software AccuRate. In 2006, the requirement rose to 5 Stars, then to 10 Stars in 2010. This all sounds great. The increasing rating requirements of NatHERS provides a measurable and predictable target for improving the energy efficiency of Australian homes. But the building products industry wanted to know, how accurate is AccuRate?

Direct download: 200_Mark_Dewsbury.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:11pm NZST

There's a new building enclosure consultancy in town. They're called Oculus and they've got a a great philosophy as well as a lot of international experience. I caught up with James Raimondo, a Senior Building Enclosure Engineer at Oculus to learn a bit more about the engineering and science of what they do.

Direct download: 199_Oculus.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:31am NZST

Within the Passive House Institute in Darmstadt, there is a small group of people dedicated to coordinating the efforts of over 20 Passive House Affiliate organisations around the world. This group is the the International Passive House Association (iPHA). Giorgia Tzar is the head of International Communications for iPHA and I caught up with her following the Passive House Conference in Heidelberg this year.

Direct download: 198_iPHA.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:13am NZST

SIPs - Structural Insulated Panels are pretty much what they say they are. Why aren't more designers and builders using this way of building energy efficient, warm, dry houses?

Direct download: 196_NZSIPv2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:24am NZST

Jessica Grove-Smith has a Masters degree in Physics from the University of Sussex, UK. She's studied in Australia and Spain, done volunteer work in Africa and India and completed an internship in Denmark. She wanted to do something meaningful with her knowledge of physics, and in 2008 Jessica began another internship, this time at the Passive House Institute in Darmstadt. Now she's a Senior Scientist and Director at the Institute.

Direct download: 195_The_Passive_House_Institute_-_220619_17.57.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:15pm NZST

Camilla Novotna always knew she wanted to build her own timber house. It was just a question of when and where. Despite not having a formal architecture or building background, Camilla has now done a lot more than design her future home. Along with her sister Pavla, she has created Ecokit - a prefabricated building system offering energy homes that can be put together by anyone.

Direct download: 194_Ecokit.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:58am NZST

International attention on Gaobeidian is set to increase up to October 2019 when Windoor City along with Passive House Institute China will host the 23rd International Passive House Conference. I spoke to the Head of International Cooperation at Windoor City, Peter Lee recently. Among other topics, I asked Peter about the perception we have in the West of 'Made in China'. My discussion with Peter confirms my belief that Passive House coming to Asia is going to make an impact in Australia and New Zealand.

Direct download: 193_Peter_Lee_Windoor_City.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:43pm NZST

After he won the Inaugural Passive House Slam during the Heidelberg Passive House Conference in March this year, I sat down with Marius Şoflete to talk about how he's inspiring people to build better places to live. Marius has a contagious enthusiasm which he's using to make Passive House fun!

Direct download: 192_Marius_oflete.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:06pm NZST

The first New Zealand Passive House was completed in 2012. Since then, about 20 more individual private houses have been Certified using the internationally recognised standard. Now, New Zealand is about to get its first Certified Passive House Cohousing project and Tim Ross has been involved almost right from the start.

Direct download: Tim_Ross_Architype.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:41pm NZST

Paul Jennings needed a project for his dissertation on fuel poverty in the UK when he came across some charity work funded by the then 'Greater London Council'. This was back in the 1980s. Not many people had heard of Blower Doors, but a team from the suppliers in Canada were willing to travel to the UK to train people on how Blower Doors could be used to help diagnose energy and health issues in buildings. At the 2019 Passive House Conference in Heidelberg, Paul shared some of his learning from over 30 years of airtightness testing. https://homestylegreen.com/190

Direct download: 190_Blower_Door_Testing_with_Paul_Jennings_-_110519_13.37.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:46pm NZST

Everett Norris always wanted to build his own house. As a boy, he also assumed that he’d own his own house. This sounds simple enough, but the reality is that home ownership is becoming more like Everett’s naive childhood dream for many New Zealanders. Everett now helps people achieve the dream of home ownership by teaching them how to build their own Tiny House.

Direct download: 189_Ever_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:27pm NZST

Paul and Pascale have created Park Homes for people like themselves. They were first time home buyers in the New Zealand market and they wanted something that would be worthy of living in for several years. Houses built to the current code are not up to this standard and so they created the change they'd like to see.

Direct download: 188_Park_Homes_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:26pm NZST

Where do you go to get beautiful, high performance doors and windows, made in New Zealand?

Direct download: 186_ThermDura.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:37pm NZST

The term 'airtight' conjures up fears of hermetically sealed boxes. In this episode, I discuss what exactly airtightness is, and why we need it.

Direct download: 185_Airtightness.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:31am NZST

Jason Quinn used to be a NASA rocket scientist. Now he's New Zealand's one and only Passive House Certifier. He's just published a book summarising the first 24 Certified Passive Houses in New Zealand.


Direct download: 184_Jason_Quinn.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:56pm NZST

In 2012 Ben Adam-Smith founded House Planning Help to collect and share all the information he started to learn on the way to designing and building his own home. His mission is to encourage people towards the "...houses we should be building in the 21st Century."

Six years on, Ben and his family are enjoying their very own Passive House.

Direct download: 183_Ben_Adam_Smith.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57pm NZST

Sam Rogers thinks we've reached a tipping point where more people are seeking high performance homes and are willing to invest a little extra for a much better result. Sam and his team at Land Homes are on a mission to make high performance homes mainstream.

Direct download: 182_Land_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:42am NZST

Felicity and Marc Bernstein met at architecture school in Germany and have been working together since. During the last twenty years they've worked in Germany, Arabia and Australia. They now want to use modular design to bring high performance, zero-carbon homes to the masses. Felicity and Marc have recently launched Hütt - Tomorrow's House Today to achieve their vision. Through the crowd equity funding platform Birchal, they're inviting everyone to join the movement.

Direct download: 181_Melbourne_Design_Studio.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:14am NZST

Terry Brennan literally wrote the book on managing moisture for improved indoor air quality. He is a lead author of a landmark 2013 Environmental Protection Agency book titled “Moisture Control for Building Design, Construction and Maintenance” which has since become a standard reference document in the industry in the US.

In November 2018, Terry visited Australia as a keynote speaker for The Building Designers Association of Australia (BDAA) and Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating (AIRAH). We took this opportunity to bring Terry to New Zealand for a short visit and workshop at the pro clima HUB, where I caught up with him for a chat about building science, mould and how to build better.

Direct download: 179_Terry_Brennan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:29pm NZST

Tedd Benson refers to stick framing as pretty basic shelter. It went up almost overnight, but the legacy continues as a 'worse form of building that then become a standard'. Today, Tedd runs Bensonwood, Unity Homes and Tektonik. He is a passionate about combing the skills and values of traditional craftsmanship with cutting edge technology to make better places to live.

Direct download: 178_Cutting_Edge_Craftsmanship.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:52am NZST

In Episode 145 I spoke with Dennis Dowling of DCD Construction. On the episode, I talk with Annabelle Numaguchi who has a PR and marketing background. Why has Annabelle recently become a Homestar Assessor and what is her vision for DCC Construction? Find out in this episode of Home Style Green. http://homestylegreen.com/177

Direct download: 177_A_PR_Boost_for_Sustainable_Homes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:15am NZST

Bert Sarkinnen has been building homes since he was 16, firstly alongside his Father who was also his teacher and mentor. Along the way Bert fell in love with the craft and beauty of timber framed buildings, so much so that he created Arrow Time Framing to specialise in this type of construction. As creators of beautiful, high quality buildings, Arrow Timber Framing is now 'the enemy of ugly'. In this conversation, we discuss the importance and value of a craft, how being encouraged to makes mistakes helped Bert to learn, and the challenges of building a business.

Direct download: 176_Arrow_Timber_Framing.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:00pm NZST

The Headwaters in Glenorchy, just 45 minutes drive from Queenstown is a magical place and now home to another Living Building Challenge project.

I caught up with lead consultant, Tricia Love recently to discuss how she got involved and what the Headwaters is all about.

The Headwaters doesn't aim to re-invent the wheel. It is however a leading example of how we can learn from what's being done overseas and contribute our own expertise towards a positive effort of creating better places to live, work and play.

Direct download: 175_Headwaters_-_221018_11.04_AM.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:20am NZST

Karen Manson likes thinking about and designing housing, not just houses. With over 15 years of international experience, Karen now has her own practice in Christchurch. She focuses on high performance houses, including Passive House. I had the opportunity to chat with Karen at the pro clima HUB about her journey. In this episode we discuss the urban design, keeping it simple and what can be learnt from the process of designing standard, code compliant buildings.

Direct download: 174_Desing_Housing_Not_Just_Houses.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:21pm NZST

Nearly all building elements (roofs, walls, floors, window and door joints etc.) will leak at some point. Problems only occur when moisture gets in, and stays in. If moisture is allowed to accumulate for extended periods, then mould grows, timber rots and metal corrodes. Ultimately, people get sick and our buildings start to fail. This can be incredibly disruptive, stressful and expensive!

WUFI® was created to allow designers to check their designs before those designs become real buildings. By running scenarios with different combinations of products we can fail in the virtual world until we optimise the design. Then we can build with confidence that our real structure will stay dry, healthy and strong for decades.

Direct download: 173_WUFI.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:49am NZST