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Functionality vs Thermal performance

Posted on: October 6 2016


Don’t hang your hat on star ratings alone…

It’s simple to measure the Thermal performance of a home with stars.

It’s relatively simple to measure the Energy usage of people living in the home with money spent.

But, what cannot be measured is the functionality of a home!


Functionality is a level of opinion…

What is functional for one, may not be functional for another.

When ‘Functionality’ meets ‘Thermal performance’ there is always a compromise!

9 out of 10 times people come to us wanting star ratings!


…. Unbeknown to them, the star rating tools only measure thermal performance and don’t consider everything in this respect!

More often than not the ratings can be achieved…

But we don’t want to sacrifice livability or pay BIG $$$ for stars!

And we don’t have to…


The key is to find the sweet spot between ‘thermal performance’ and ‘functionality’!

Every family is different, every site is different and everybody has their ‘MUST HAVES’!

Design is KING…

Ensuring the home functions for the family’s lifestyle, designed for the environment and includes the ‘MUST HAVES’!

The common energy rating systems under NATHERS (Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme) don’t take every aspect into account…

They can miss simple ventilation aspects and don’t consider water usage or efficient electricals.

The point I’m trying to make is don’t get too hung up on star ratings!


At the end of the day you have to be happy in your home!

The last thing you want is to build a new home, live in it and discover it doesn’t suit your lifestyle.

Designing for sustainability is all about finding the sweet spot between functionality, thermal performance and longevity!

I’m not saying we should turn our back’s on the thermal performance rating tools, just to look at the project holistically!

10 Things you must know before building a sustainable home

SHM on 3AW 693 News Talk

Simon & Michael were exceptional throughout the build of our home. I was initially worried about the challenging design of the home and the access to the site, but this proved to be little issue throughout the build. They were very thorough in explaining everything to me from the paperwork side of things right through to final handover. At no point did they neglect to communicate with us and were extremely reliable. The job was done on time and to the standard they promised. I am still very proud to call this place home.