Residential Compliance

Residential Compliance


The Building Sustainability Index, BASIX, was introduced into the development approval process in NSW to assess the performance of new homes against sustainability indices for water, thermal comfort and energy. The team at Efficient Living have a thorough understanding of how the calculating engine works and we have extensive product knowledge of the fittings and appliances addressed within the BASIX tool. With the 2017 increase in performance targets in the thermal comfort and energy sections of the BASIX tool, now more than ever, choosing highly trained professionals will deliver better outcomes for your projects.

We stand by our claim that our knowledge and expertise results in healthier and more comfortable homes for less investment.

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The National House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) was introduced into the Australian market to mandate a minimum thermal comfort performance for new housing stock. Well designed and specified buildings should be able to maintain comfortable temperatures and a healthy indoor environment without the need to mechanically heat and cool.

Efficient Living has specialised in this niche area since the program’s inception. Our passion for delivering the best solutions to our clients has seen the Efficient Living team grow and become one of the largest and longest established energy efficiency consulting teams nationally.

Our clients include design firms and construction companies, for which we assess projects ranging from backyard cabins to high-rise residential towers. Many engineering firms chose to partner with us in this specialty area as our large consulting team allows us to turnaround substantial projects to within agreed time frames.



The Built Environment Sustainability Scorecard (BESS) is an assessment tool created by local governments in Victoria. It assists builders and developers to show how a proposed development demonstrates sustainable design, at the planning permit stage. Like the NSW BASIX tool, BESS addresses water, thermal comfort and energy efficiency. The BESS framework also dives into other critical areas for holistic building sustainability outcomes like; transport, waste and indoor air quality.

Efficient Living can complete BESS assessments on your behalf or help guide you through the process to ensure you achieve the best outcomes.

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Onsite Compliance

Energy Efficiency framework in Australia revolves around buildings in the design stage. The ‘As Built’ outcomes delivered to homeowners is not always as promised in early stage documentation.

There is now a lot of work being done to further educate certifiers and builders to improve build quality. In NSW following the final inspection and prior to issuing a final occupation certificate, the certifying authority is required to issue a BASIX completion receipt. It is now becoming more common for certifiers of multi-residential and commercial building projects to request the final check to be completed by a Qualified Assessor rather than the builder.

Efficient Living provides this service to further support our building clients, reduce their liabilities and improve quality control. We aim to make the compliance process as easy as possible by providing installation certification documents for clients to distribute to all relevant trades, we then complete the site inspections as required to ensure the builders deliver on their promise and produce a building that complies with Section J, Energy Efficiency of the National Construction Code (NCC).

Free BASIX Review

Efficient Living offers an OBLIGATION-FREE BASIX REVIEW to ensure you are getting the best value outcomes for your project.

Assessment results can vary significantly based on the Consultant’s technical expertise and product knowledge. As a result, designers and developers can incur costly compliance solutions or end up with inclusions with inferior performance. In the case of large-scale residential projects, unnecessary specifications can add millions of dollars to the construction.

Specifications will impact the performance and desirability of the building, so it is important that practical solutions which achieve the best outcomes are selected.

A second opinion can provide reassurance that your project has been reasonably assessed or provide recommendations for areas for improvement. Our recommendations can be addressed with your current assessor or we can work with you to remodel the project to achieve a better-built outcome.

Simply email us a copy of your plans and existing BASIX report and we will offer our professional advice – obligation free.

Efficient Living works closely with policymakers and industry associations to contribute to the advancement of better-built outcomes. Our collaboration on research projects has resulted in increased accuracy and quality of services offered in the construction and sustainability industry.


  • We’ve had very thorough and efficient service from Efficient Living with each commission. In particular, we appreciate their willingness to test different options and problem solve for complex and unusual design situations.

    Alexandra Matyear, Whitcher Matyear Architects

  • Efficient Living have for the past few years provided excellent service at a reasonable cost and always on time. They make helpful suggestions to resolve any problems. I would recommend them to anyone needing advise in building thermal efficiency.

    John Smit, Mirvac Group

  • Our design had large amounts of glass to maximise the available view and included appropriate shading devices and thermal mass internally. Using the standard BASIX DIY program we were unable to comply even using high performance windows. Using thermal modelling provided by Efficient Living the building easily passed the BASIX requirement and the information enabled us create a building that performed even better thermally using simple design solutions.

    Peter James, Watershed Design

  • Efficient Living make us look good and help us deliver better outcomes. They make our buildings more efficient and our clients enjoy the benefits, then we take the credit. Thanks, Efficient Living

    Adam Pressley, All Australian Architecture

  • Efficient Living has provided me with energy assessments and advice, Section J and BASIX certification and advices for the last 8-10 years. On every occasion, it has exceeded my expectations in regards to timeliness and efficiency and all at a reasonable cost. On the occasions where adjustments have been required, they went out of their way to accommodate the project design intent with highly gratifying results. I recommend them very highly.

    Emile Jansen, Jansen Architecture

  • We have worked with Efficient Living for over ten years and have always found Tracey and her team to be responsive and professional. Our projects are far from standard and we have always been able to arrive at a workable solution in terms of BASIX compliance, that keeps everyone happy - including the environment.

    Kristin Utz, Utz Sanby Architects

  • We count on Efficient Living for all our BASIX needs, including reviewing and improving BASIX reports when we purchase sites with approved DA’s. Efficient Living has been able to standardise requirements across our developments, saving on compliance costs and making implementation easier. We would highly recommend Efficient Living’s professional services to provide solutions for saving water, reducing energy and improving thermal comfort.

    Mona Chao, Meriton Group

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