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Minister To Open NZ’s First Best Home® in Havelock North

Date: November 19th 2012

Minister To Open New Zealand’s First Best Home® In Havelock North

Government is showing keen interest in Hastings District Council’s Best Home® initiative with Hon Phil Heatley, Minister of Energy and Resources and Minister of Housing, confirmed to tour the show home and speak at its official opening this week.

Mayor Lawrence Yule announced today that Mr Heatley, who had been briefed on the pilot project from the outset, saw merit in the sustainable new-build initiative and was looking forward to touring the home which he would jointly open with Mayor Yule this Thursday, 22 November.

The Council, together with local building company Horvath Homes, launched the sustainable housing project back in July in a bid to encourage the construction of more energy-efficient homes. It was hoped the pilot could exceed current building regulations to achieve a minimum six stars on the Homestar™ energy efficiency rating tool for no more than five per cent additional cost of a standard build.

“Best Home® is a model that initiates a fundamental change to the way new homes are designed and built in New Zealand to improve energy efficiency, comfort and overall cost,” said Mr Yule.

“I am proud that this system has been developed in Hastings with a local company and the pilot project is on target to prove what we set out to achieve.

“We believe Best Home® should not only be available to building industry professionals and potential home owners in Hawke’s Bay, but right throughout the country.”

Mr Yule said it was a great endorsement for the team to be acknowledged by the Minister visiting this week.

“We hope that a Best Home® partnership between local government and the government sector can be formed so that we can work together with industry to enable new-builds to maximise sustainable solutions affordably.

“The fact a minimum six star rated home can be built for no more than 5% additional cost of a standard build, compared to the whopping 20% extra outlay many believed was the case, is hugely significant.

“We have the ability to take ownership for the type of future residential new-builds popping up all over the country by putting a stake in the ground and ensuring we are guaranteeing our future generations homes that won’t need retrofitting to make them warmer, drier, healthier and cheaper to run,” he said. (Most new-builds today achieve a three or four star rating out of a possible 10).

The 187sqm 4 bedroom, 2 bathroom home in Havelock North has been the subject of case studies by building research organisation, Beacon Pathways Ltd. Information will now be developed into a Best Home® ‘tool kit’ – a support package of resources that could be utilised by any builder or designer wishing to meet Best Home® criteria. Included within the package is the processing of building consents within five working days.
Horvath Homes director Adam Horvath said constructing New Zealand’s first Best Home was a great achievement and he believed building industry professionals will get on board given consumer demand for eco-friendly houses was increasing.

“I hope to see new houses meeting Best Home® criteria popping up all over the country,” he said.“The time and effort to build a minimum six star home is minimal compared to the overall benefits.”

Mr Horvath said one of his team’s greatest achievements was waste management on site.

“Normally the construction of an average house would result in about five tonnes of waste going to the landfill but we have managed to recycle a significant amount sending less than a total of 200kg to the landfill.”

Following the official opening on Thursday, Mr Horvath said his team would complete the landscaping and open the house for public viewing from Saturday, 8 December.

Internationally star-rated homes carry a value premium in excess of 10 per cent.



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