When we started dreaming about building a sustainable home we were frustrated to discover these types of homes seemed reserved for two categories – big budget architecturally designed masterpieces or hardcore green homes with owners who didn’t mind sacrificing comforts and lifestyle.

We didn’t fit either category.

So we set off on a mission to smash the stereotypes of the building industry.

Surely it was possible to build a passively designed, energy efficient, off-grid, beautiful home on a budget without a life of sacrifice?

What we quickly discovered was a huge information gap.

So we hope that by sharing our home and our journey we will continue to disrupt the status quo, to help any of you who are building, renovating, extending (or just dreaming of) to access simple, independent information and become believers that homes CAN be built better, use less and still be comfortable and affordable.

The Sandhill

Land size: 22 acres

Prior use: Sand extraction mine

Location: Kyvalley in Northern Victoria

House size: 28 squares, four bedrooms, two living

Power source: Off-grid – 8kW solar panels with 24kWh lithium battery back-up

Building Materials: Recycled timber, bricks, zincalume, concrete, steel & lots of glass

Builder: We are owner builders and employ local builder Leigh Huggard

Design: Two north facing interconnected pods

Brick: B grade recycled reds

External cladding: Spotted gum

Deck: Iron bark

Floors: Burnished concrete for improved thermal mass

Windows: Double glazed black allumium

Cooling: Ceiling fans in every room and evaporative cooler

Primary Heat Source: Biofuel heater currently burning feed grade wheat

Secondary Heat Source: Gas log fire for quick top ups

Shearing Shed House includes the following sustainable design principles…

passive design

thermal mass

north orientation

recycled materials

double glazing


strategic shading

local trades & suppliers

bio-fuel heating

For comprehensive info on the build head to

The Victorian Families Putting Sustainabilty First and Living Off the Grid 

The Shearing Shed House (Our Home Magazine)

Designing and building our sustainable home

How (Not) To Build A Sustainable Home

Or read about Bullara, the 100 year old farm house we renovated using passive design principles.

2 thoughts on “About The Build

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