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We build passive houses in Tauranga and throughout New Zealand that are healthy, comfortable and energy efficient

Passive houses change the way we live. Considering a new build or interested in a renovation to turn your existing home into a passive house? Find out just how you can benefit from one at very little cost.

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The benefits of a Passive house for you



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Low energy use and big savings

The most obvious upside to a home that heats and cools itself without an air conditioner or a furnace is the monthly energy costs: They’re typically close to zero.


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High indoor air quality (less sneezing!)

Conventional buildings don’t give you much control over the ventilation because they’re not airtight, Since a passive home has a killer ventilation system, it filters out pollen quickly, a major bonus for anyone with allergies.

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A totally quiet house

Another benefit of airtightness is sound quality. When the doors and windows are shut, the house is almost completely silent. Even ambient noise is reduced since there isn’t central air turning off and on.


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A future-proofed home

By building a passive house now in Tauranga, Mt Maunganui or Papamoa, your home will more than likely still be compliant in 30, or even 50 years.





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Passive houses are the future of the house building industry in New Zealand

A passive house is a fabric ­first approach to achieving comfortable and healthy buildings. Designing a passive house demands a great understanding of energy flow in houses. A passive house can save you up to 90% on your annual energy bills for heating and cooling.

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What is a Passive House?

What is a Passive House?

What is a Passive House?

The sun is a powerful building tool – by altering a house’s orientation paired with other passive design techniques like quality insulation and ventilation and crafting high performing, airtight doors and windows, we can maximise the sun’s potential within the home. This is followed up with highly efficient heat systems to get every last ounce out of the home. NZ is a developed country with a cold, damp home epidemic – we can make a drastic change for the better with Passive Houses.

Heating Systems

Heating Systems

When all else is said and done with the design and build of a Passive House, it’s time to select heating systems. That’s right, our Passive Houses do have heating systems – they are just far smaller and far more efficient than the average NZ home, leading to shockingly low power bills. Thanks to the quality design elements of the Passive House, a small heat pump or boiler is all you’ll ever need to efficiently heat or cool your home.

Breathe Easy

Breathe Easy

Good quality air leads to safe, healthy homes which is why ventilation is a vital part of the Passive House movement. Our houses often use mechanical ventilation systems to circulate fresh air throughout the house, releasing stale air outside of the home without losing heat.

Airtight Construction

Airtight Construction

If a building is not airtight, these seemingly small spaces for air transfer have massive implications on the house’s ability to hold onto heat. Warm interior spaces despite cold outdoor weather is part of the Passive House promise, which is why our houses are designed to avoid any air leaks and cracks, gaps and holes. Passive Houses are tested to make sure that their airtight construction is up to the industry’s incredibly high standard.

Quality Framing

Quality Framing

To people from colder climates, it’s surprising how cold an NZ home can be – and a lot of this comes down to draughty window and door framing. In Passive Houses, quality craftmanship is essential, and door and window frames are designed and built to stringent standards so that they can live up to their important role of preventing the flow of warm air.

Well-Insulated Homes

Well-Insulated Homes

Unlike standard NZ homes, floor and ceiling insulation is not enough for a Passive House. Here, every element of the thermal envelope is considered so we can insulate houses in the most efficient and comprehensive way. The type, style and amount of insulation is climate-dependent, so we are not fighting against nature to insulate the home. Using everything from concrete to batts to wool to vacuum insulation material, Passive Houses are heated evenly and to a high standard, limiting heat loss.

Shape and the Thermal Envelopes

Shape and the Thermal Envelopes

Thermal envelopes are a concept crucial to Passive Houses – they are the dividing line between a living space and the environment beyond and include any element that helps keep the living space warm, dry and safe. The shape and configuration of a building is kept simple in a Passive House because this makes the most of the thermal envelopes. The simpler the thermal envelope, the less heat will get lost.

Properly Positioned Homes

Properly Positioned Homes

Passive Homes harness the power of the sun efficiently through thoughtful attention to the house’s orientation on the land. We consider sunshine and shade in relation to the home, directing principal windows towards the equator to utilise solar power to its full potential. This is a key factor to ensuring that the house absorbs and retains the sun’s heat, staying toasty warm throughout winter and cool and comfortable in summer with little heating required.

What is a Passive House?

What is a Passive House?

A Passive House is one built with an emphasis on energy efficiency, health and comfort. Through careful design, Passive Houses result in houses that are comfortable and dry year-round, yet use less energy than standard-built homes. Passive House technology uses and applies the physics of energy to create healthy homes with small ecological footprints.

The 5 Steps to Building a Passive House

Pre-planning, positioning, insulation, windows, and air are good components on their own. However, when they work in collaboration together they are great and can achieve the highest standard of efficiency - Passive House. Talk to our Tauranga builders today.
1.
PRE-PLANNING
A home’s components all interact and affect one another. Each of these components such as, architectural form, framing, insulation and other systems must be planned for in conjunction to each other.
2.
POSITIONING
Before building can begin, a site for the Passive Home must be mindfully selected. The site must have good solar access, maximize cooling breezes yet remain sheltered from cold winds.
3.
INSULATION
In order to minimize heat gain in the summer and heat loss during winter materials such as; concrete, brick, stone, and tile on the insulated layer will help even out temperature fluctuations as they occur.
4.
WINDOWS
The selection of high-performance windows will help maximize heat gain during winter and minimize heat gain during summer months. Window eaves should also be used to limit exposure to the high summer sun and allow the low winter sun in.
5.
AIR
With the home so well sealed and insulated the indoor air quality must be maintained through the use of a Heat Recovery Ventilator or a HRV. A HRV brings in fresh outdoor air while removing the warm stale air/pollutants. .

What our clients say

  • I would have no hesitation recommending Passive House Builders to friends or colleges to carry our building work. They arrived when they said they would, they did what was asked, they completed the work in the time frame allotted, came in on budget and where a pleasure to deal with. When changes had to be made they sought the best alternative, there were no dramas or anything in the too hard basket. 

    I have pencilled Passive House Builders in for a building renovation in the new year and look forward to many more successful projects together.

    Paul Devitt
  • The biggest thing for us was trust, having a builder that you can trust to give you an honest days work but also someone who cares about the project and working with you to get a great end result. Passive house builders were tidy, methodical and well equipped.

    Building a house is stressful and it was great to have someone who is approachable, takes the time to explain the process and keeps you in the picture, which is especially helpful so that you can be prepared for whats coming next and plan accordingly.

    Jono Moynan
  • Our build contained a number of features that differed from the norm (ply lined ceilings, negative detailing, full height glazing, an insulated concrete pad on cupolex formwork etc). Ricky was open to new ideas, consulted the plans and executed the build efficiently and accurately. He was happy to bring up and discuss changes to plans where there was a better way to manage a part of the build.

    We thoroughly recommend Ricky as a quality builder, we’re very happy for anyone to give us a call and visit our home to see the excellent work that he’s undertaken. We wish him all the best in his future work and we’ll be calling on him ourselves when we need a quality builder.

    Vince Ford
  • Being new to the Bay of Plenty, we asked around neighbours and local tradesmen for recommendations for a good builder to assist us with renovations to our home.We were recommended Ricki Helagi from Passive House Builders, whom we were assured, is honest, reliable and has a reputation for completing high quality builds.

    It was a very good experience for us and we would highly recommend Passive House Builders to others.
    Peter & Dee McCrea

Watch our positive reviews from Omokoroa Road

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