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  • Writer's pictureSoba Faris

New for 2023: Sustainability Assessment

Wellington Lane - an exemplar example of a sustainable dwelling we designed to passive house standards

As energy prices continue to rise, we are all thinking more carefully about how we consume energy in our homes. We often delay turning on the heating at home during autumn/winter which not only decreases our comfort levels but could also lead to issues such as increased condensation, black mould, and other problems that may affect the building fabric and create long term damage.

It can be difficult for homeowners to know what areas of the home are best upgraded and what the expected benefit, feasibility, and approximate cost could be. To help with this, we have been busy developing a sustainability assessment as part of our services which identifies areas of the home that could be improved to offer an enhanced level of comfort and energy efficiency.

During our site survey, we will produce a detailed report highlighting what is currently in place, and options for improvement and what the expected benefit, feasibility, and approximate cost could be. The report is broken down into two main key strategies:

Fabric First Approach

Designing to make dwellings much more comfortable and easier to heat in winter and cooler in summer, whilst providing a healthy indoor environment. Upgrading the building fabric such as walls, floors, roofs, windows, doors, etc. will minimise energy loss and maximise energy efficiency. Some of the topics in this insulation, airtightness, ventilation, passive design

Energy Focused Approach

Assessing the existing mechanical appliances within the home and looking to upgrade these appliances and/or implementing new strategies for heating, cooling, ventilation, etc. Some of the topics include heating, cooling, lighting, mechanical ventilation, water usage, and on-site energy generation.

A snippet from our sustainability assessment from a live project is shown below.

Fabric First - An understanding of the existing wall fabric will provide us with an idea of current heat loss and how best to go about making improvements to keep heat within the home for longer during the colder months.
Energy Focus - Understanding what appliances are currently in place will help us provide strategies for improving the heating strategy depending on the needs of the occupant

As shown in the examples above, we aim to offer multiple solutions which will vary in their cost and expected benefit. By providing a range of possible improvement options, we can discuss in detail with our clients which we think might be best for them and their home according to their budget and their needs.

This is a service we will offer as standard as part of our new renovation projects. We can also offer this service independently of any design work if required.

If you're thinking about building an extension or looking at a new build, get in touch to see how we can be of help. As architects, we aim to build in a sustainable manner exploring many options to suit our clients' needs.

You can read more about Wellington Lane here.

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