Sustainable Homes for Modern Living

Our Approach: Sustainable, Creative, Flexible and Functional

Passive House Design.

Our award winning designers adopt Passive House principals which was founded in Europe as a certification scheme for best-practice energy efficient, comfortable homes.

This performance standard is fundamentally about an integrated design and building process which ensures a truly energy efficient, comfortable and ecologically home for the lifetime of the building.

It reduces the need to add expensive additional technology onto a poorly performing building.

The international Passive House Standard differentiates from the existing notion of Passive Solar Design which essentially requires north facing orientation and inclusion of thermal mass.

Our Passive House designed homes aim to ensure solar gain is optimized not maximized. It focusses specifically on ensuring that the building fabric performs to the highest standard of airtightness and thermal insulation essentially regulating the internal temperature of the home.

Each design consists of simple, cost effective forms with less surface area which reduces heat loss and therefore requires less energy to heat, cool and ventilate the internal spaces.

Passive homes are:


According to the Australian Passive House Association Passive House buildings allow for energy savings of up to 90% compared with typical existing buildings and over 75% compared with average new bestpractice constructions.


Passive House buildings are also praised for their high level of comfort. They use energy sources inside the building such as the body heat from the residents or solar heat entering the building – making heating a lot easier.


Special windows and a building shell consisting of highly insulated exterior walls, roof and floor keep the desired warmth in the house – or undesirable heat out.


A ventilation system consistently supplies fresh air making for superior air quality without causing any unpleasant draughts.

sustainable building.

Each Ecoliv Building has been designed to achieve a minimum 7 star energy rating. Our HIA GreenSmart Accredited display home won the 2010 HIA GreenSmart National Home of the year demonstrating Ecoliv's ability to reduce impact on human health and the natural environment by achieving six environmental goals:

01. Siting and Design Efficiency

Design Efficiency

The objective of Ecoliv Buildings is to to design a minimalist contemporary aesthetic with an environmental conscience that achieves flexibility through the modular concept. The compact nature of each module minimises wasted space, resources and money. Ecoliv has been designed to incorporate 900mm building material increments which aim to reduce construction wastage. Our lightweight footing system is removable and recyclable which allows site adaptability and minimal excavation.

Siting Efficiency

Our highly qualified and experienced professionals will assess each individual site and make recommendations to harness the maximum siting potential. Ecoliv Buildings are designed around passive solar principles to take advantage of natural lighting and to reduce the reliance on artificial heating and cooling. A 900mm eave overhang, optional shade battens and double glazing minimises solar absorption. Site specific strategically placed windows allow cross ventilation and potential for natural temperature control.

02. Energy Efficiency

Solar Hot Water System

Heating Water is the single largest source of emissions in homes, equating to around 25% of energy use. A solar hot water system can provide a home with up to 90% of its hot water needs from a free and renewable energy source. Savings can be approximately $500-$700 per year on electricity bills. As much as 60% of the average hot water bill can be attributed to heat loss from pipes. To minimise this, Ecoliv Building designs group rooms that frequently use hot water as shorter water pipes minimise heat loss. The most energy efficient system will be selected for each individual project based on usage requirements.

Solar Electricity

In just 60 minutes, enough sunlight hits the earth to power us for an entire year. To harness this, a grid connect solar power system acts as a mini power station for your home, supplying power and sending surplus power back to the electricity grid. When surplus power is fed back to the grid, your energy retailer credits your account - with the potential to substantially reduce or eliminate your power bill.

Energy Efficient Light Globes

Ecoliv Buildings use low energy Compact Fluorescent Light (CFL) globes which can save around $45 in energy costs over the lifespan of the globe. CFLs produce a third less greenhouse gas emissions than regular light globes.

03. Water Efficiency

Water Tank Configuration

The average Australian family uses about 1,300 litres of water around the home every day. Installation of water tanks for harvesting for domestic usage and practising water conservation measures around the home can save money and future water resources. A 10,000 litre water tank configuration is a standard inclusion for each Ecoliv Building to eliminate the need for mains water.

Water Saving Plumbing Fittings

Ecoliv Buildings incorporates 6 stars WELS rated plumbing fittings which restrict the flow of water saving about 14,500 litres of water per year. Toilets fitted to Ecoliv Buildings feature a 4 stars WELS rating and save water by offering a half flush, resulting in a saving of up to 8 litres per flush.

Water Saving Appliances

Around 10% of the average home's water usage occurs in the kitchen and much of this is attributed to use of the dishwasher. Standard Ecoliv Buildings include appliances with the maximum energy rating & WELS rating.

04. Materials Efficiency

Timber Framing and Trusses

Plantation timber from sustainable sources and recycled timber is utilised where possible. Timber is natural and renewable making it one of the most sustainable resources. Forest & Wood Products Australia research found 25 tonnes of carbon per Australian home could be saved by choosing wood where possible.

External Cladding

Ecoliv Buildings offers a range of sustainably sourced and manufactured cladding products such as Shadowclad, Weathertex, Colourbond Steel and Radial sawn timber battens. All are specified for their durability, lightweight and low maintenance qualities.


Environmentally friendly plasterboard that utilises recycled manufacturing techniques feature in Ecoliv Buildings interiors. The certified low VOC content plasterboard promotes internal air quality.

Insulation Batts

Ecoliv Buildings include high level roof, wall and floor insulation which can save up to 50% on heating and cooling costs. Our glass wool insulation batts are manufactured using recycled glass bottles and sand which are nonirritant, fully recyclable and thermally and acoustically efficient.

Double Glazed Windows

Ecoliv Buildings feature double glazed windows achieving WERS (Window Energy Rating System) of 5 stars. Our windows and sliding door systems aim to obtain the best energy rating, acoustics, reduce energy consumption and provide ultimate comfort for the home owner.


Ecoliv Buildings joinery is made to strict Australian/New Zealand quality standards using wood fibre from sustainable forests. Our range is manufactured in factories that meet environmental and social regulations and has been independently certified by Good Environmental Choice Australia.

Our range of reconstituted stone benchtops utilise reclaimed material content. The product is stain, crack, scratch and heat resistant, being the perfect choice for a sustainable maintenance free surface.

05. Indoor Evironment Quality

Low VOC Paints

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are released into the air while paint dries and are one of the causes of paint odour, which also contributes to air pollution. Ecoliv utilise the highest quality Low or no VOC outgassing paint for internal and internal surfaces.

Low VOC Timber products

Ecoliv Buildings minimise the use of plywood, MDF and particleboard due to their formaldehyde content. To reduce VOCs all manufactured timber products have a formaldehyde content of less than 1mg/litre. Ecoliv Buildings incorporates passive and active internal air circulation systems through strategically placed louvre windows to allow for cross ventilation therefore improving air quality.

06. Waste Reduction

Our green living concepts are followed through into the construction process of each Ecoliv Building. The design and layout of Ecoliv Buildings maximises the use of standard building sizes and lengths in common building materials to minimise material wastage. Prefabrication of frames and trusses reduces wastage by up to 52% and where possible any excess building materials are recycled. Our factory built Ecoliv Buildings generate less waste overall, which is important when you consider that building and renovation waste makes up to 40% of what goes into landfill. Ecoliv Buildings constructed 'on site' must also adhere to strict guidelines to minimise site waste and disturbance. The widespan joist and bearer footing system ensures minimal site impact with its lightweight and site adaptable properties. Efficient material allocation and usage result in minimal stockpiles and recycle skips collect any excess wastage. Garden beds and water tanks are installed early to reduce and divert stormwater runoff. Noise pollution is kept to a minimum via the offsite prefabrication of most components of each Ecoliv module.

The standard inclusions in Ecoliv Buildings are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout the building's life-cycle. This winning combination of passive solar design, waste reduction, systems integration and optimal operational performance will reduce energy usage by up to 40%. Composting toilets, grey and black water recycling systems and wind power systems can be adapted to any Ecoliv building for total self-sufficiency. Each design can alternatively be connected to existing services which also significantly contributes to reducing environmental impact for the long and short term.

sustainable design & exceptional value.

It was previously thought that the embodied energy content of a building was insignificant compared to the energy used in operating the building over its life, but CSIRO research indicates otherwise. The average household contains about 1,000 GJ of energy embodied in the materials used in its construction – equivalent to about 15 years of normal operational energy use.

Incorporating sustainable design components has immediate and long lasting lifestyle and health benefits and can even boost the value of properties. A recent Australian study found that, on average a one star improvement in energy ratings translates to a 3% rise in market value. An agreed contract price incorporating the available options ensures there are no hidden costs or unexpected extras. Ecoliv Buildings are delivered complete as ordered, ready to either connect to existing services or be totally self-sufficient.