Inspiring people to make a better place to live


When you're designing a new home, or getting one built, you should invest as much as you can to upgrade the thermal envelope. Put in as much insulation as you can, and invest in the best windows you can afford. In this episode, I walk through the minimum requirements of the New Zealand building code ... [Read more]

Many people have concerns about using foam (polystyrene) because of the chemicals used to make the stuff. In fact some of those chemicals are on the Living Building Challenge Red List. So why is foam such a good building material? It's all about R-value. Foam is an incredible thermal insulator. For the price, it's about the ... [Read more]

What's a great way to build a house quickly, with nearly zero waste and at a reasonable price? Prefab of course! And Metrapanel is a prefab solution created and produced right here in New Zealand since 1994. The original company was started in 1994 by Melissa Savage's father, Les Wykes. The current company has been ... [Read more]

When creating a building design, how do you calculate the R-Value of building elements and check the design for code compliance? As Albrecht Stoecklein, creator of Design Navigator describes, getting this right in construction design can be tricky. Albrecht Stoecklein is a building physicist and has an Energy Management Diploma as well as vast experience ... [Read more]

FREE 4 PAGE GUIDE shows how to design a sustainable home

The Building Guide is NZ’s independent step-by-step guide for home owners who are building new or renovating, with a comprehensive building product and services gallery.