Price change notice

Price change notice

You’ve likely heard the recent discussion around timber price and shipping issues which has been a growing concern for the construction industry and home builders around the world. A significant increase in demand for building products has put pressures on supply, which has led to timber prices climbing steeply.

This has been largely due to the pandemic, which has caused havoc and disrupted life and the economy worldwide. As a result, the following factors are impacting YZY Kit Homes price and supply:

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NatHERS

How Energy Efficient are Solid Timber Homes?

With the increased focus on sustainable living in recent times, the energy efficiency of new homes has become a hot topic. A home that uses less energy has less impact on the environment and on our back pocket, which is something we’d all like to include in our new home builds.

However, the trouble is that when it comes to building an energy efficient home, the ratings and requirements used as a standard can be confusing and may not tell the full story. This is particularly true when it comes to solid timber homes—currently there is no formal way to assess their actual energy efficiency in Australia, which often means they are undervalued.

So, if you’re considering building a solid timber home but are looking for clarity around just how energy efficient they are, read on as we share some key tips that can help guide your decision.

How is energy efficiency in homes rated in Australia?

The standard national energy efficiency tools used across Australia are The Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) alongside the mandatory energy efficiency requirements set out in the National Construction Code (NCC). The trouble with the NatHERS system is that R-values are the only measure used to determine effective thermal performance—but in solid timber homes, the actual thermal performance is often higher than the steady-state R-value shows due to the ‘mass effect’.

In New Zealand, the importance of mass effect is recognised by a Building Code Clause that allows for alternative minimum R-values for solid timber construction where the thermal mass of the building must be taken into account.

What’s the difference between R-value and mass effect?

When there is a difference in temperature between inside and out, heat will conduct from the warmer side into the material, then slowly move through to the colder side. The R-value measures this resistance to heat flow in a steady state, which applies when the temperatures are constant.

However, in reality, there is often a fluctuation between temperatures both inside and out, depending on the time of day, season and climate. This will alter or even reverse the direction of heat flow, sometimes multiple times in the course of a day. Under these conditions, the shifting heat flow results in less heat transfer, giving walls made from high-heat capacity materials such as solid wood, a thermal performance which is more effective than the steady-state R-value shows. This dynamic process is referred to as the mass effect.

Another situation where mass effect comes into play is where the outside temperature changes but does not cross the indoor temperature. In this case the direction of the heat flow stays the same, and the time delay or thermal lag creates efficiency by delaying the peak heating or cooling load. While this will not affect the amount of heat flowing through the wall, the lag can save energy and reduce running costs.

A study on the energy performance of log homes backs this up, finding that although they often have lower steady-state R-values, log walls have been shown to provide equal or superior annual heating and cooling performance when compared to lightweight wood frame walls. For example, a log wall with a R-9 value performed similarly to an insulated lightweight wood frame wall in a temperate climate with values of R-13 to R-15, for both heating and cooling loads.

Which factors impact energy efficiency ratings?

Custom designed - living room
Custom designed – living room

NatHERS energy ratings take into account a wide range of factors when determining the rating, including the location, orientation, subfloor, roofing, lighting, ceiling fans, flooring and even the colour of the external walls. There is no generic ‘one size fits all approach’ and with 69 different climate zones identified by NatHERS across Australia, the results can be widely variable.

How energy efficient are YZY Kit Homes?

YZY Kit Homes are constructed with timber mass walls, which act like ‘thermal batteries’, storing heat during the day and gradually releasing it at night. This makes our cabins and granny flats an eco-friendly and energy efficient choice that will benefit you and the environment for many years to come.

LGL laminated timber, glulam
YZY Kit Homes are built with solid wood LGL timber

To achieve your desired energy efficiency, there are two options:

1) Build your cabin or granny flat with 60mm, 80mm, 95mm, 120mm or 140mm thickness LGL walls that will not require extra insulation, even in the hottest or coolest regions of Australia.
2) Have a minimum thickness of the walls required structurally, with external cladding or internal lining and extra insulation added in between. Cladding options are available that are low (or no) maintenance and some can also be fire resistant.

What are the NatHERS ratings on YZY Kit Homes?

Iceland Display Village Ourimbah 2020
Iceland 2-bedroom granny flat, Ourimbah Display Village

As discussed, there are many factors that impact how the NatHERS rating is calculated, which means the rating of your home will always be project-specific. In addition, the actual energy efficiency and comfort felt living in our cabins and granny flats will be better than the ratings reflect, owing to the mass effect of our solid timber walls.

As a guide, below you’ll find some indicative ratings on our designs when built in certain conditions and climates.

NSW climate zone 15 (Central Coast NSW):
Iceland design built with 60mm walls on concrete slab = 7 stars, with 80mm walls = 7.9 stars.
(A pass for this climate zone is approximately 5.2 stars.)

TAS climate zone 26 (Hobart)
Greenland design built with 80mm walls = 6.4 stars
(A pass for this climate zone is 6 stars.)

ACT climate zone 24
Iceland design built with 80mm walls = 6.1 stars, 95mm walls = 6.7 stars.
Greenland design built with 60mm walls with insulation added to 3 walls = 7 stars.
(A pass for this climate zone is 6 stars.)

Note: A passive house must not exceed a total combined heating plus cooling demand of up to 108 MJ/m2/year (108 MJ is equivalent to 7.3 star NatHERS design in Canberra.)

There’s more to energy efficiency than a rating

While the NatHERS ratings provide some useful insights into energy efficiency, it’s important to be aware that there are other factors that impact the actual efficiency of buildings, in particular, those built with timber mass walls.

In the future we hope for a similar building clause found in New Zealand to be introduced into Australia which recognises the difference in rating thermal efficiency in timber mass buildings. Until then, it is up to the consumer to look beyond the ratings, and for the builders to continue to educate, to be sure the energy efficient homes being built are the best they can be.

Upcoming NCC update

The NCC is updated every three years based on regulatory practices, industry research and public feedback. The next update is planned in 2022 and the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) has opened consultation on stage 2 of National Construction Code (NCC) 2022 public comment. Responses are invited until 17 October 2021 and can be accessed here.

This stage of consultation seeks comment on proposed NCC amendments on energy efficiency and condensation. A consultation link was sent to all registered NCC Online users on 30 August 2021. We will submit our comments to the ABCB, to advocate for the energy efficiency of timber mass homes to be taken into account. Our recommendations will include the introduction of a clause that accounts for the importance of mass effect and allows for an alternative to minimum R-values for solid timber construction, similar to New Zealand’s current Building Code Clause to that effect.

$10,000 Grants Granny Flats Tasmania

$10,000 grants to build Granny Flats, Tasmania

  • The first 250 eligible applicants to build new ancillary dwellings will receive $10,000 grants.
  • Streamlined ‘no permit required’ approvals to construct ancillary dwellings, such as granny flats or self-contained studios.

On 29 June, Michael Ferguson, Minister for State Development, Construction and Housing announced the The $2.5 million Ancillary Dwellings Grant Program in now open for applications.

“To help meet the demand for rental properties, the first 250 new ancillary dwellings that are made available for long-term rental for more than two years will receive $10,000.” – Minister Jaensch said.

Contact your local council to see what’s possible in your area or contact Brian Best, our Authorised builder for Tasmania on 0438 966 533.

The Tasmanian Government is developing a broader housing policy framework that looks at the full array of housing market issues across the public and private sector to drive solutions, in line with PESRAC’s recommendations.

Although over the past year Tasmania had been building houses at a rate not seen in nearly a decade, Minister for Housing Roger Jaensch said more needs to be done.

In the media release ‘Comprehensive package to increase housing supply statewide’ Tasmanian Housing Minister Roger Jaensch said that the government will be providing a streamlined ‘no permit required’ approvals pathway for landowners to construct ancillary dwellings, such as granny flats or self-contained studios, on their existing properties.

Information source:

Check the Guidelines, eligibility criteria and to submit an application on the Department of State growth website.

Media release TAS government, 29 June 2021: Applications open for Ancillary Dwellings Grants Program

Media release: ‘Comprehensive package to increase housing supply statewide’, 16 March 2021

For current building regulations, please find more information on cbos.tas.gov.au > Consumer building information or contact our builder in Tasmania.

Meet Brian and Kate Agfest 2021

Meet the builder servicing Tasmania at Agfest

We are proud to announce that ShedBarn, a reputable local business based in George Town, has joined our builder’s network to supply and build YZY Kit Homes in Tasmania.

So, meet Brian and Kate Best, ShedBarn owners at Agfest 5 – 8 May, site S09 to discuss your project ideas building with YZY Kit Homes. 

Meet Brian and Kate Best, builder servicing Tasmania at Agfest 2021

ShedBarn has been supplying custom sheds barns, garages, farm buildings and now YZY Kit Homes will be added to their new range of products. With over three decades of experience,  ShedBarn has earned a reputation as a trusted quality Kit Shed builders. Above all ShedBarn are a team of problem solvers, and pride themselves on going above and beyond for their customers. 

ShedBarn offers:

  • Quotes and site inspections
  • Assistance with council approvals
  • Installation services available Tasmania wide

If you’d like to find out more, please get in touch with Brian Best before the show: 0438 966 533.  

Agfest event and venue information

Agfest is a multi-award-winning agricultural field days. There will be 515 fabulous Agfest exhibitors offering their special products, services and deals. Come and support Tasmania’s amazing small, medium and large-sized businesses.

When?
The 2021 Agfest event will be in the paddock from 5 – 8 May, Wed – Sat 8am-5pm and in the cloud from 8 – 15 May.

Where?
Quercus Park
415 Oaks Road, Carrick, Tasmania 7291

Find us at ShedBarn site S09, the corner of South Street and First Avenue.

Get Google Map directions below:

More details on how to get to Agfest, where to park and plan your day at the show, please visit the Official Organizer’s website: www.agfest.com.au

Featured Projects built 2020

Projects Built In 2020

Despite the global pandemic, the year 2020 was yet another great year with a number of projects built and many happy clients enjoying their new additional space. While larger buildings were used as secondary dwellings for family members, smaller cabins were used as Home offices, teenage studios and workshops. We at YZY Kit Homes are so pleased we could help families to get their life at home much easier with the extra room added to their property. We also had a custom design Tennis Clubhouse designed and built in the year 2020. The local community now has a new state-of-the-art Tennis centre they all can be proud of.

It all starts with the need for extra space. People contact the builder looking for possible ideas. At the same time, the builder takes into consideration the requirements and the potential restrictions present on the land. At the conclusion of several rounds of discussion, the ideal outcome is achieved through mutual cooperation. The feedback we are getting from our clients is a testament to it. Given below are some of the highlights of the year 2020.

“YZY Kit Homes features projects 2020” is a photo book published annually showcasing our most prominent projects of the year and can be viewed from any of the authorized backyard cabins builders and suppliers. The video given below is a compilation of the best work done by us in the past year, it consists of creative and finely crafted cabins.

We humbly wish that you enjoy our video and get new your home improvement ideas for 2021. Share the video link with your close friends and family or with anyone who is looking to add a Scandinavian quality space.

Below is a digital version of the Photobook about Featured Projects of YZY Kit homes built in 2020. Scroll down to view the featured projects and the purpose-built backyard cabins and granny flats.

Investment Property Ibiza Built by Owner-Builder in 4 days

Jim Rankin, the owner of IBIZA chose this model because he liked the design and layout. The client was happy he had great assistance from the local central coast builder of YZY kit homes. “We only had minimal adjustments to make in order to make it an ideal fit for the space. The construction was extremely quick and was completed within a matter of only 4 days” – said Jim Rankin.

DIY Ibiza project built in 2020

Space consists of an open plan living with a dining area, a single bathroom and two bedrooms. There is plenty of light flowing into the space making it airier and more spacious. “You can see how it looks when it’s all finished, it’s very spacious, airy and offers everything we wanted” – said Jim Rankin.

Inside DIY Ibiza project built in 2020
Kitchen DIY Ibiza project built in 2020

To view more photos or to get additional information on this project: Investment Property Ibiza Built by Owner-Builder

Multipurpose Room Skyros 19

According to Martin, the builder, clients are extremely satisfied with the new cabin and are thrilled having the double-glazing and doors and windows.

Skyros 19 project built in 2020

To view more photos or to get additional information on this project: Multipurpose Room Built in Armidale

Luxury Retreat Iceland Built for Father-In-Law

Property owner and son-in-law Richard said that Iceland was a special kit home. He was satisfied that he was able to make alterations to the design without any issues and that it was very convenient.

Iceland project built in 2020
Inside Iceland project built in 2020

According to homeowner Ulrich, it does not look anything like an ordinary granny flat. It is more of a luxurious holiday cabin which you can live forever. “We went along with Iceland as it offered a spacious living area and a large verandah. The doors of the bedroom open into the spacious verandah” – said Ulrich.

Bedroom to verandah Iceland project built in 2020

To view more photos or to get additional information on this project: Luxury Retreat Iceland Built for Father-In-Law

Custom built Charmhaven Tennis Centre

The very modern looking and spacious clubhouse was a custom design to replace the old structure and cater better to the requirements of the members of the club and community.

Tennis clubhouse project built in 2020

Now members of the club enjoy the brand new, tailor-made clubhouse with kitchen, pro shop, office, toilets and showers for men, women, and differently-abled individuals. It also comprises a water tank, deck with disability entryways. The clubhouse is also equipped with security cameras for protection. This would revolutionize the facilities offered by the community for tennis along the Central Coast.

Inside Tennis clubhouse project built in 2020
Inside Tennis clubhouse project built in 2020

To view more photos or to get additional information on this project: Custom built Charmhaven Tennis Centre

Garden retreat built for a grown-up daughter in Canberra

Naturally beautiful Capri, a garden retreat, built for a grown-up daughter in Canberra. Featuring two bedrooms and an open large dining living area and positioned in the lush and green sizable garden, this secondary dwelling feels like a holiday retreat. Ideally created relaxing space to clear a busy mind, transforming it into one that is crystal clear and focused.

Capri project built in 2020

Soundproof music studio in Gold Coast

(left side of the page)

“It is an incredible space with a sense of homeliness” – said Russell & Kerryanne Neal, the studio owners. “Even with the delays encountered due to the pandemic situation, the process went without any issues. The builder was straightforward to work with and completed the project with exceptional quality. They were even able to accommodate any last-minute changes which we requested.

Pool house built in Sydney

(right side of the page)

Skyros 19 and custom project built in 2020

Homes and Cabins built in Australia

The very last page of the photobook has a collection of several different projects completed in NSW, ACT, QLD and TAS. The photos show how every cabin looks different and unique depending on the color of paint.

Projects built in Australia in 2020

If you have a project in mind, feel free to get in touch with us and start creating the unique space that is perfect for you.

We at YZY Kit Homes thank all of our clients for choosing us to realize their dreams. We are also very proud to have our teams of quality builders and grateful for their hard work to make even most complicated projects happen. The results are fantastic and we look forward with excitement to the next year 2021.

Visitors inside Sicilia at the Home Show

Grand Opening Day of The Largest Display Village, Ourimbah

Updated: 5 Dec 2020

New Display Village is now open. Visit Display Village page for images of cabins on display, contact details and driving directions.

Exciting news for Sydney, Central Coast and the Hunter region – the Largest Display Village of YZY Kit Homes will be opening its doors to the public on Saturday, 5th of December 2020 at 10 am in Ourimbah. (check the map below for driving directions)

Display Village Grand Opening in Ourimbah
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LGL laminated timber, glulam

Laminated timber vs Solid timber log homes

YZY Granny flats are made of glued laminated timber (LGL), also called Glulam. LGL timber has many advantages over the solid lumber and can also be more expensive than traditional timber. While smaller timber cabins would not justify the cost of laminated timber, larger buildings are worth considering the benefits of LGL. After all, the inside is what matters most in quality of the building.

Continue reading Laminated timber vs Solid timber log homes
10 day Council Approval Program VIC

10-day Council Approval Program in Victoria

The Victorian Government introduced a Secondary Dwelling Pilot Program to process ‘granny-flat or garden studio’ applications within 10 days. Exciting news for the Victorians as the state has the most stringent laws in Australia for building a secondary dwelling.

Check our granny flats and cabins and contact our authorized dealers and builders in Victoria.

What is a secondary dwelling?

A secondary dwelling can be defined as a dwelling which is either attached or detached from an already existing dwelling on the same plot of land.

Plan Melbourne 2017-2050, recognizes the demand to promote housing choice and to cater to the ever-growing needs of the household. In such a scenario, secondary dwellings provide:

  • An affordable yet wide selection of housing alternatives
  • Offering members of the extended family to live in close proximity
  • Option for couples to scale down
  • Added option of rental for members of the community

Secondary dwelling pilot program

Four different councils would conduct a trial run for the Secondary Dwelling Code from August 2020 till March 2021. These four councils are Greater Bendigo, Murrindindi, Kingston and Moreland councils.

Continue reading 10-day Council Approval Program in Victoria