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Byron Shire
January 29, 2022

Step inside these beautiful, practical and sustainable homes

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One of the beautiful, practical and sustainable open houses you can visit this weekend. Photo supplied

Four fabulous examples of sustainable housing will be open to the public on Sunday, September 16, as part of the annual Sustainable House Day Open Homes event.

The nationwide event has been running since 2001 and this year three homeowners from Byron and one from Tweed will be showcasing their homes and gardens.

They’ll also be sharing their stories and tips to create sustainable homes that are comfortable to live in, cheaper to run and better for the environment.

‘The open day is a great way to meet like-minded people, see living examples of sustainable houses and learn practical, sustainable solutions and information on how to transition toward greener living,’ Sustainable House Day Coordinator Andia Cally says.

Rammed earth

Included in this year’s showcase is Elwood Farm, in Limpinwood, a stunning owner-designed home, designed with self-sufficiency in mind.

The three-bedroom house has been built with rammed earth and an array of recycled building materials. The home contains a number of energy-saving features and an extensive edible garden that includes fruit, nuts and vegies, which the homeowners capitalise on year-round, turning them into wine and pickled goods.

From upcycling to award winning

In Mullumbimby, the Repurposed Shed is a great example of how to upcycle an existing building in an affordable way. The owner/builder from Balanced Earth has given a new lease of life to an 80-year old farm shed, converting it into a gallery and one-bedroom home using non-toxic recycled materials.

Balanced Earth’s healthy hempcrete home in Possum Creek will delight sustainability stalwarts with its innovative energy efficiency features, including underground cool tubes to make fridge run more efficiently.

This low-footprint home won the Masters Builders Association’s Energy Efficient Building Award in 2017.

Fig House in Bangalow was inspired by a 150-year old strangler fig that offers natural shading in summer and a wonderful sense of privacy and welcome haven for wildlife. The solar-powered home offers a multitude of water-saving features, passive design and recycled building materials and its north-facing aspect and outdoor areas allow year-round outdoor living.

Expo on Saturday

And that’s not all.

A Sustainable Living Home Expo on Saturday, September 15, offers an all-day program of activities for the whole family to help create more affordable and environmentally friendly homes and lifestyles in our region.

The Tweed Expo runs from 9am-3pm at Kingscliff TAFE and entry is free.

All houses participating in Sustainable House Open Day on Sunday 16 September will be open between 10am – 4pm.

Most offer free entry with some asking for a gold coin donation. These details, along with addresses and a fuller description of the sustainable features are listed on the national website.

 


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