Although aimed at designers and builders, it can easily be used by anyone looking at having a new house built. Each of the pages described below has a great deal of information. Even if rebuilding is not going to be possible, the information provides useful ideas for assessing the suitability of any existing home you might look at.
The website (here) consists of pages dedicated to:
Site Analysis: "Understanding the site is the first step towards designing or substantially renovating a house that will minimise its impact on the environment, minimise the use of resources and be comfortable and healthier to live in."
- Looks at climate, hazards, weather, services and infrastructure, site conditions, landscape, culture and heritage.
- Looks at legal requirements (Resource Management Act, District Plan), positioning of house, location of other structures and features.
- Looks at building location and orientation on the site; building layout; window design; insulation (including window insulation); thermal mass; shading; and ventilation.
- Looks at water supply, water use, handling waste water, and suitable appliances.
- Looks at construction systems, choice of materials, minimizing waste, quantifying the environmental impact of the materials that might be used.
- Looks at heating, cooling, lighting, electrical design, ventilation, and the choice of appliances.
- Looks at statutory requirements, wet area design, structure and materials.