Insight and analysis from our expert team

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We have a team of experts with extensive experience in sustainable homes and neighbourhoods.  Longstanding and stable, our team can offer technical insight, analysis and expertise to your projects.

Case study: Warrant of Fitness advice

Beacon assisted the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment in assembling information on potential Warrant of Fitness requirements for state rental housing.  One issue on which Beacon advised was the question of whether a ground vapour barrier could be substituted for underfloor insulation.

Our analysis produced a value case for both ground vapour barriers and underfloor insulation which showed clearly that they have different functions and equal value.


Case study: Waimahia Inlet neighbourhood and house design

Verney Ryan, our New Homes Programme Manager, applied Beacon’s knowledge of home and neighbourhood performance to the concept phase for Waimahia Inlet, an affordable housing development by the New Zealand Housing Foundation.

Beacon provided detailed comments on the masterplan and house designs for the development to highlight where improvements could be made to the affordability of the homes. Operating costs in terms of heating and doctors’ bills are an important consideration for low income (and indeed all) households.

Verney focused on the overall orientation, shape and location of the houses and the design features within each house, recommending a range of changes including maximising solar orientation, reducing west-facing glazing, improving window placement and design for daylighting and ventilation, and matching hot water systems to household size for greatest cost effectiveness.

Auckland Council’s Unitary Plan required houses in Special Housing Areas to achieve a minimum HomestarTM rating of six stars. Verney, who is also a certified Homestar assessor, assessed three basic 4-bedroom house designs prepared for Stage One of the Waimahia Inlet development against Homestar requirements.

His analysis indicated where each of the design could be upgraded to achieve a six star rating in a cost-effective manner.  Recommendations included:

  • Insulating concrete slabs
  • Upgrading to double glazing
  • Upgraded insulation
  • Improved construction waste management
  • A range of water-saving features
  • Ticking off low cost and easily achieved credits

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Lois Easton with homeowner

Build Back Smarter programme leader Lois Easton with one of the homeowners

Nick Collins with CERA boss Roger Sutton

Beacon CEO Nick Collins with CERA boss Roger Sutton

Here’s what our clients have to say


“I like the collaborative nature of Beacon. They pull a range of people from different backgrounds, experience and skillsets together to create innovative approaches and change. I like the people involved - they are enjoyable to work with.“

“Beacon talks about the rationale for doing things, explaining ‘why’ in ways that builds on practical experience helps the decision making process and understandings of why it’s worth investing in. Beacon has credibility because it’s not just academic and they know the real life pressures people are under.“