Ngati Whatua o Kaipara housing project

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ExDefence Force houseBeacon’s Home Assessment and Prioritised Plan Builder has assisted Ngati Whatua o Kaipara in the first stage of an ambitious project to improve housing for its whānau. 







House moving to siteTwo ex-Defence Force houses were moved from Hobsonville to a new site on Kaipara College land in Helensville to be a real life demonstration to local whānau of how a home can be retrofitted to be warmer, healthier and cost less to run.







The Plan Builder tool was used to assess the houses and develop a plan, not only for addressing deferred maintenance issues but to retrofit the houses to higher standards of performance. Alongside roof, wiring and structural maintenance and redecoration, the houses have had ceiling, walls and under-floor fully insulated in a quality installation by InsulPro.  This should make these older homes considerably warmer - in fact, there is no heater although the option is open for a wood burner to be installed in the future.  Energy efficiency has been improved by removing downlights and replacing them with more efficient lighting.

The first house was blessed and opened in June 2014, and is open to whanau and the local community as an example of what sort of house they can achieve and what the cost is. 

NWOK house opening


What is the Home Assessment and Prioritised Plan tool?

The Home Assessment and Prioritised Plan (HAPP) tool is designed to:

  • Assess a home’s performance - indoor environment quality (warmth, dampness), energy efficiency (hot water, heating and lighting) and water efficiency.
  • Produce a prioritised tailored upgrade plan to help homeowners decide on the steps to take to improve their home. 

The tool was first developed and tested in the HomeSmart Renovation project.   Trained assessors from community organisations across New Zealand applied the tool to 650 homes in all three climate zones.  This enabled the team to optimise the ease of use, consistency of output advice, and effectiveness of the prioritised plan.  

The tool was subsequently used by building consent officers and Eco Design Advisors to assess approximately 400 homes in the Retrofit Your Home Programme (Auckland/Waitakere councils).   It also underpinned the development of the online version of the Homestar rating tool.