MORE than 300 people toured the only green-certified homes in Orange during the weekend to see the future of housing construction in the city.
Orange builder Mick Fabar described the homes as “a glimpse into the way houses will be built in the not-too-distant future” as he gave the Central Western Daily a guided tour yesterday.
Mr Fabar has constructed two homes in Diamond Drive to serve as showcase models after he recently became the only accredited Green Homes builder in the region.
According to Mr Fabar residential households contribute up to 40 per cent of total green house gas emissions in the country.
The environmentally friendly homes constructed by Mr Fabar in conjunction with Green Homes Australia cut those emissions by up to 80 per cent.
Mr Fabar said he expected to see an increase in construction of green-homes in the city because a “genuine desire” existed in the community to minimise impacts on the environment.
“People really to want to reduce their carbon footprint and the home is the best way to do it,” he said.
“It can be quite a simple process. These kind of houses don’t have to be architecturally designed jigsaw puzzles.”
The homes are designed to capture maximum sunlight and feature individual heating and cooling units, thermal window glazing and renewable building materials like bamboo flooring and reconstituted stone bench tops.
Water supply for the homes comes from a system of underground rainwater tanks that harvest roof-captured rainwater.
“All that water is captured, stored underground and goes through a treatment process before it makes its way back into the house for use in one hundred percent of the homes operations: taps, toilets, washing machines, everything,” he said.
“In the present water-environment that kind of system is invaluable.”
It is estimated that the extra environmentally friendly features cost an 10 to 15 percent to incorporate, however Mr Fabar said those costs are recouped in a matter of years.
‘When you consider the economic benefits of the house you save money everywhere, not to mention that a number of studies have been undertaken that show a home with a green star rating like this increases the property value by up to twenty per cent.”
The homes were officially opened by Chairman of Clean up Australia Ian Kiernan AO and the CEO of Landcare Australia Brian Scarsbrick on Saturday.