Found in New Zealand, this home is constructed from 6 shipping containers. Photography by Simon Wilson. Image via.
Trend Report: Eco and Green Home Design
This post is made possible with the support of Australian Solar Quotes.
The trend towards greener, more efficient homes is nothing new. Over the last few decades, housing design has slowly evolved beyond simply looking good, to being good. Smart planning, sustainability and clever, innovative building materials, means it is becoming easier for home owners to tread more gently on the earth when they are building their dream home.
Recently we’ve seen this trend towards eco and green home design gather more momentum. It has moved from a fringe passion shared by a few, to widely accepted as an integral element of good design.
Here are some of the eco and green home design trends that have everyone talking.
Eco and Green Home Trend #1: Solar Energy
Luminous solar panels have been mounted in a rusted-steel-beam grid to form a modernist canopy that frames the façade. This imaginative “solar umbrella” hides the household power plant in plain sight. Photo by Marvin Rand via dwell.
In the last few years our power bills have doubled making Australia’s electricity prices amongst the highest in the world. As a result, more and more households are turning to solar energy, making it an economic choice, not just an environmental one.
Today, there are more than 1.2 million households getting their daytime power from solar panels. If you’re considering solar energy, check out Australian Solar Quotes. Fill in their very simple form and they’ll organise three independent, competitive quotes so you can find out what it really costs to make the switch.
Eco and Green Home Design Trend #2: Resilience
A storm and weather proof home in New Zealand can be completely sealed off from the elements with a layer of perforated metal screens.
Sustainable design is increasingly married to conversations about a home’s resilience and how it is prepared for changing environmental conditions. After all, it doesn’t matter ‘green’ a building is if it can’t withstand flooding, earthquake, fire or other natural disasters.
Clever design means these two issues do not have to be mutually exclusive. Just look at this home, which sits on 20 acres of bushland in Victoria and is fire and storm resistant. Custom shutters that are made from corrugated iron have been designed so you can incorporate a fire blanket behind them. When the shutters come down they seal the building. Plus, when they’re up in winter they maximise sun penetration, while in summer they keep the sun out by acting as eaves.
Eco and Green Home Design Trend #3: Container Conversions
This Brisbane home by Todd Miller of Zeigler Build is constructed from 31 shipping containers. Image via The Zine.
It’s generally too expensive for a dock to ship empty freight containers back to the country of origin. Instead, businesses buy new containers every time they need to ship their products around the world. This has lead to an abundance of unwanted containers languishing at docks.
Recognising that shipping containers are an ideal building material – durable, stackable, movable, plentiful and easy to modify – a number of architects are stepping up to the challenge and creating homes out of recycled shipping containers. Compared to your average house, they’re also more affordable and quicker to assemble – so it’s a win for the environment and homeowners!
Eco and Green Home Design Trend #4: Upcycling
Reused materials account for 60 percent of the structure of this house and 90 percent of the interior. Architects: 2012Architects. Image via dwell.
Everything old is new again. Found materials are being reclaimed, reused and repurposed to create a home that it entirely unique.
Whether it’s as simple as creating a bookshelf from old timber crates and boxes or building a home from recycled materials, upcycling is an innovative way of building today for tomorrow.