Self-sufficient - substantial home with a positive energy rating

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Eco-friendly family home.

Suburban home features a raft of energy strategies including solar power to achieve self sufficiency.   Owner Natalia Harrington talks about the home's energy-saving strategies.

Self-sufficiency is an ideal once associated with hippies and an alternative lifestyle. Today, with fast-growing populations and shrinking resources around the world, architects and homeowners are embracing this concept as a key way forward. A modern home is likely to reflect sustainability in everything from energy source to construction style to the choice of taps. 

Natalia and Jamie Harrington are the owners of a green housing company, Hybrid Homes. To prove that an inner-city family home could combine domestic comfort and a sustainable, self-sufficient lifestyle, the couple asked Jamie's father, architect Richard Harrington, to design a house with both these advantages. "The house was to be a show home for our business and had to reflect what is achievable in terms of the latest technology and attention to site orientation, passive heating and cooling and environment-friendly finishes. "Several design approaches came together to achieve the maximum results with this property. Initially, the west-facing site posed some challenges -- while it has great sea views, it was tricky to maximise the sun from the north and regulate its impact from the west."

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