Early intervention – minimising the cost to achieve 7 star compliance

The new standards and their effect on building costs

The updated energy provisions of the National Construction Code 2022 have increased the energy efficiency requirements for residential developments from 6 stars to 7 stars, effective from October 1, 2023. These amendments are designed to create an uplift in energy-efficient building practices and enhance the liveability and sustainability of housing stock Australia wide. But with the rising cost of building (and living), anxiety in the marketplace as to the impact these standards will have on business viability and housing affordability certainly isn’t unwarranted. At Ecocert, we believe the answer to reducing costs associated with energy compliance lies with early intervention during the pre-construction phase of projects.

The power of early intervention

Up to now, energy efficiency requirements have been commonly left as the last item on the checklist during the pre-construction phase of a project. Modifying designs late in the game often requires reworking multiple interconnected elements, which often isn’t feasible due to time constraints and client expectations. The limited options for compliance at this late stage often results in costly upgrades to glazing and materials. With more stringent energy standards afoot, there is a strong argument for the industry to revamp their processes and introduce a preliminary analysis of their projects during the concept development phase.

Preliminary analysis and design optimisation

As opposed to simply conducting an energy assessment of a design and identifying non-compliance, a preliminary analysis shows the impact different orientations, colours and glazing options have on the project’s energy efficiency. This data is collated into a report, allowing designers and builders to make informed design decisions that optimise energy use and reduce need for costly upgrades.

Achieving 7-star energy ratings under the National Construction Code 2022 demands a proactive approach that prioritises early intervention and design optimisation. The benefits of addressing energy efficiency concerns at the pre-construction phase are multi-faceted:

  • reduced project costs,
  • minimised construction delays,
  • enhanced design flexibility,
  • and a positive impact on the environment.

To optimise the energy efficiency of your project, reach out to the team at Ecocert on 1300 457 700 or you can email us at info@ecocert.com.au. We are always happy to assist.