Insulation should be a top priority when building your home

By Jarrod
4 Min Read

If you’re a homeowner, or about to become one, insulation might do more than keep your home warm in the winter – it can also save you money. 

As energy costs continue to rise across the country, a report by the Climate Council earlier this year revealed that insulation can play a massive role in reducing energy bills. 

Looking at the average electric heating and cooling bill for an average-size household in each capital city, data showed that adding insulation and fixing draughts helped Australian households save anywhere from $354 to a whopping $1,561 each year. 

The findings assumed this household had a 2-star energy rating, which is slightly above the national average of 1.8 but not very good compared to the minimum 7-star rating required of new homes.

Carl Tidemann, a co-author of the report, said the most cost-effective thermal efficiency upgrades were ceiling insulation and draught sealing.

“Interestingly, ceiling insulation and draught-proofing are two of the cheapest options, but they also have the greatest savings,” he said. 

According to the report, most Aussie homes do not have enough ceiling insulation, while around a fifth have none at all.

Warren Steward, Head of Product Development from Bradford Insulation, said they have already seen an increase in Aussie homeowners installing insulation in an effort to embrace more sustainable living. 

“Most recently, there’s been a buzz in the Australian home construction industry about the introduction of the new 7-Star rating by the National Construction Code (NCC),” said Mr Steward.

“This new rating system is all about ensuring better energy efficiency, which translates into numerous advantages for homeowners, including reducing energy consumption, lowering energy bills, healthier homes, as well as making significant strides in Australia’s collective efforts to combat greenhouse gas emissions.”

A better way of building

The new NCC 7-Star rating, coming into effect at the start of October, introduced new “modern home” requirements for accessibility and energy efficiency in newly built houses and better reflect community expectations for modern homes.

According to Mr Stewart, these requirements will improve the quality of living in new homes and their overall value. 

“A well-insulated home offers a more comfortable living environment all year round,” he said. 

“A major benefit of insulation is a reduced susceptibility to trapped moisture from condensation that can lead to mould and mildew in your home, potential health risks for your family, and long-term structural damage to your home.

“For asthma and allergy sufferers, some insulation products are approved by the National Asthma Council’s Sensitive Choice program, meaning they are asthma and allergy-friendly building products.

“As energy costs rise and home buyers become more environmentally conscious, energy-efficient homes become more attractive in the real estate market. Owning a 7-star rated home could likely be a solid investment for the future.”

The latest 7-star rating system will also reduce energy consumption in homes by including better insulation, glazing, sealing, and smart solar design, improving energy efficiency by 18-25 compared to the older 6-star rating.

“Approximately 40 per cent of household energy is used for heating and cooling in an average Australian home,” said Mr Stewart.

“The mandatory minimum insulation levels in newly constructed homes assist in reducing heating and cooling costs by around a third, but experts agree that higher levels of thermal insulation can reduce energy costs even further.”

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By Jarrod
Jarrod Brown combines his background in journalism, copywriting and digital marketing with a lifelong passion for storytelling. He has a strong passion for new and emerging consumer technology within the building sector. He lives on the Sunshine Coast - usually found glued to the deck of a surfboard.