Australia's Most Sustainable, Acclaimed Homes from the HIA Awards

  • Article by: Sally Wood

The Housing Industry Association (HIA) recently announced the winners of the 2020 GreenSmart Awards.

Recognising the best in sustainable housing, the GreenSmart Award program was established over 20 years ago. The Awards recognise the efforts of environmentally-aware residential builders, designers and manufacturers who make energy efficiency stylish and comfortable, contributing an important, positive difference to the environment.

Blue Eco Homes Cleans Up

Blue Eco Homes, a sustainable home building company in NSW, received four of the nine 2020 GreenSmart awards. This prize haul included the highest accolade—the 2020 HIA Australian GreenSmart Home—for their Sapphire display home in western Sydney. The Sapphire also won the Australian GreenSmart Display or Project Home category.

The Sapphire impressed the judges for not only its charming aesthetic but its unbeatable sustainability. The home is energy positive, meaning that its able to generate and store more energy than the home needs to operate thanks to its 5kW solar PV system equipped with a 10kW battery.

This home is nestled in New South Wales’ Blue Mountains but even in the summer it maintains a comfortable indoor temperature. This is due to its UPVC aluminium-clad, triple-glazed windows and doors that let in one-sixth of the heat that a typical Australian window would. But perhaps the most impressive feature of this four-bedroom bungalow is that it is entirely airtight, apart from its front door keyhole. This facilitates the regulation of temperature within the property and contributes to its eco-smart design.

Blue Eco Homes also took home awards for the GreenSmart Custom Built Home and Australian GreenSmart Professional. The winner of the latter, Joe Mercieca, established this family-owned business in 2003 and rebranded it to Blue Eco Homes in 2010. He was recognised for his admirable commitment to revolutionising the way homes are designed and constructed for a modern world.


Other Award Winners

The GreenSmart Multi Dwelling Development Award was won by both the ACT’s Light House Architecture and Science and Southern NSW’s 360 Building Solutions.

Using locally made materials, they were able to build a sleek co-housing project, dubbed ‘The Village’, with “exceptional energy efficiency and comfort”.

The same duo won the GreenSmart Energy Efficiency award for their home that accommodates up to five people yet consumes less energy than the average one-person household in Canberra.

The GreenSmart Renovation or Addition Project was awarded to Light House Architecture and Science and Indepth Building Solutions based in the ACT and Southern NSW respectively. Their clever transformation made a run-down property with a poor environmental footprint into a nearly seven star energy efficiency rating, still improving its amenities.

The GreenSmart Sustainable Home Award went to Beaumont Building Design in Victoria.

This attractive home received an 8.3 star energy rating thanks to clever features such as a green switch at the front door to turn off all non-essential power and its recycled glass insulation.

The GreenSmart Product was awarded to NSW’s Nu-Rock Construction. The winning product was their Building Block, created from industrial waste materials in a process that produces zero carbon emissions, which can be used in a variety of construction projects as brick, roof tiles, or even part of sea walls.

The 2020 HIA awards reflected the inspiring innovation and progress being made in the Australian building industry, moving us closer each year to net zero emissions and a more sustainable future.


Published: 18/09/2020
Author: Sally Wood