Design

Sustainable & Passive Architectural Designs

Sustainable & Passive Design Specialist Architects Brisbane

Minimise the environmental impact of your home through sustainable passive design.

One of our recent projects  was awarded a high effiecient star rating of 8.7. Your average home usually rates around a 3 or a 4. See what makes our project so much more eco-friendly.

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Begin your Sustainable journey today with our Design Advice Service as it may be the perfect first step for you.

Sustainable & Passive architects

Specialising in Sustainable & Passive House Design

It is important to consider sustainability when choosing an architect to design your home. Apart from the far-reaching social and environmental benefits of sustainable home design, it is also financially desirable as it lowers the running costs of your home significantly.

It might, however, surprise you to know that not all architects are what you would describe as ‘sustainable architects’. Yes, they would have learnt about sustainable home design at an earlier time, but for many, it’s not an area that they specialise in. In fact, many architects and building designers choose to do the bare minimum.

Generally speaking, sustainable home design is a relatively modern concept. This is because we, as a society, have only begun focussing on the importance of water conservation and energy efficiency in the past few decades. It is, nevertheless, an important concept that we, at dion seminara architecture, have fully embraced. So much so, that we have invested heavily in solar production for our own office. Feel free to check out our solar analytics display here. It will show you our solar production as well as the kilograms of CO2 we save each day.

Given our dedication to eco-friendly passive architecture, we have built a stellar track record for this type of home design across Brisbane. By choosing sustainable architects to design your new home or renovation, you can enjoy all the benefits associated with ‘built-in sustainability’. These include lower running costs, healthier living conditions, and lower water consumption to list a few.

The 3 major benefits of sustainable & passive house designs

It’s little wonder that sustainable home designs have become so popular when you consider all the benefits they offer.

Environmental

In a world of ever-changing climatic conditions, environmentally sustainable home design is more important than ever. Our experienced architects will design a breathtaking home for you that is tailored to your local conditions. We will, in other words, harness the unique potential of your property to create a comfortable home that is both economical to run and beautiful to live in.

First, we will get a full understanding of your needs and the prevailing conditions around your home. From there, we will carefully plan every aspect of your home design to the finest detail. By the time we are finished, we will, without question, have brought your dream home to life.

Your eco-friendly home design will feature passive climate control so as to dramatically reduce the need for auxiliary cooling. We will also carefully select each material and appliance to enhance your home’s ability to respond to our changing climate. As a matter of fact, making even the simplest adjustments can significantly improve your standard of living and comfort. For instance, selecting materials that repel heat, rather than absorbing it, and screening key areas from direct sunlight creates spaces that are naturally cooler in summer, and warmer in winter.

The key to eco-friendly and sustainable living is design. As experts in home design, it is our priority to capture your vision while still making your property as energy-efficient and environmentally friendly as possible. As a result, you will no longer need to rely on HVAC systems or other forms of artificial climate control.

Social

The measure of great architecture is how comfortable you feel within your home. Great home designs are created around the needs of the individuals. They are built around the types of social interactions that are important to you, the owner. We therefore also analyse your social needs in great detail to ensure that your renovated home truly compliments your lifestyle.

Do you work from home? If so, do you need more privacy in your working environment? What are the key social considerations in your daily life? Do you like to entertain? If so, what type of social atmosphere do you want to create?

Once we have a detailed understanding of your needs, we can begin creating a space that is perfectly tailored to your lifestyle. One that is spacious and open yet offers privacy, comfort, and a more secure living environment. What’s more, your home will capitalise on all the natural light and cooling breezes your property has to offer. Above all else, it is our mission at dion seminar architecture to create a space for you that you will just simply love to come home to.

Economical

Perhaps one of the most important aspects of sustainable architecture comes in the form of economic sustainability. Your budget is equally important to us. We know that the design of your home needs to achieve your goals while still catering to your budget.  This is why we offer cost estimates very early on in the design process.

What’s more, our designs are also mindful of future costs. Each element of sustainable and/or passive architecture impacts the long-term running costs of your home in different ways. For this reason, we will incorporate sustainable design principles to create climate responsive designs in our work. These designs save money across your energy, water, and ongoing maintenance bills without compromising the function and aesthetics of your property.

All of this is, of course, only possible through careful planning. For example, something as simple as choosing the correct type and amount of insulation can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the lifespan of your home.

Rest assured that whatever your financial circumstances, our experts at dion seminara architecture, will create the perfect home for you.  That is, a home that offers the highest levels of comfort, and is perfectly tailored to fit your lifestyle, and budget.

Traditional glory

Sustainable & Passive Design was Used in the Early Days

As we noted earlier, sustainable house design is a relatively recent concept. However, this does not mean that it is completely absent from nonmodern properties. Many traditional homes boast a number of sustainable features.

For example, large verandas were once very common features of homes in countries across the southern hemisphere with warmer climates. Traditional Queenslander homes are a classic example of this. However, over time architectural trends changed and people began to demand more interior space. Eventually verandah’s became enclosed or ceased to exist at all. Free flowing breezes were therefore blocked, and the heat protection varandahs offered was lost. Because of this, more modern homes typically offered poor climate control, which caused homeowners to rely on air conditioners and appliances to keep their homes cool in the summer.

Fortunately, many homeowners in Brisbane are now seeking to return their Queenslanders to their former glory. That is to say, many homeowners are opting to expand the square footage of their Queenslanders through rear extensions. This not only gives homeowners the added space they need, but also preserves the original charm of the property and maintains an eco-friendly home with natural temperature regulation.

Considerations

Architectural Sustainable & Passive Design

Our accomplished architects understand that there is a lot that goes into a successful sustainable home design. At dion seminara architecture we take a number of things into account when designing an eco-friendly home. These include:

  • Low-impact building materials
  • Energy efficiency design including home orientation, prevailing breezes, shading and insulation
  • Design durability
  • Water harvesting and recycling

It is only once we consider each of these factors that we are able to create a more liveable home design for you that is uniquely tailored to reduce your consumption and overall running costs. If you want a design that integrates your home with the surrounding landscape, preserves the local habitat, and still provides you with the ultimate comforts and standard of living, simply contact dion seminara architecture today.

How to

Improve Your Home’s Sustainable & Passive Design

There are a few steps you can take to make your home more sustainable. Although some of these improvements are simple and can be put into practice immediately, others take longer and can involve elaborate structural alterations. Luckily, home renovations are the perfect opportunity to apply these changes and transform your property into an eco-friendly paradise.

Practical changes for improved sustainability

Insulation

If you have an older home with little to no insulation, now would be a good time to get some quotes. Beyond this, do whatever you can to keep your home insulated. If this is a recent issue for you, consider the possibility of installing exterior blinds or shutters to improve insulation, and/or fit weather-seals to your doors and windows.

Water

Dripping taps, leaking showers, and faulty toilet cisterns can significantly waste water. It is therefore important to fix any leaks as soon as you notice them.  It is similarly important to use water sparingly and replace showerheads with the water-efficient, slow-flow type fittings. In fact, a number of free showerhead exchange programmes exist in Australia to help you do exactly this.

Consider saving greywater to use in your garden. This water can, for example, be manually collected from your baths and basins or can be rerouted from your appliances via a reliable diversion system. At the very least, choose garden plants that are resistant to drought and don’t absorb excess water from the soil.

Whats more, your hot water service can also be upgraded with a solar-boosted service. Whether you use a solar water heater or solar powered heat pump, both are efficient and economical, and are one of Australia’s greatest inventions.

Many sustainable homeowners also install water tanks on their properties to catch fresh rainwater.

Electricity

When you buy new appliances, such as washing machines and dishwashers, make sure these have a high star rating.

You can also significantly save on energy costs by switching off lights when you leave a room, or resetting thermostats on all heating and cooling equipment. For one thing, this will esure that you do not constantly draw power from the grid. Don’t forget about swimming pool pumps and heaters as these also use a lot of energy. Finally, we recommend you install low-energy globes for all your lighting.

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