Homestar passes market test

14 November 2017

Guest post by Annabelle Numaguchi of Rilean Construction, a member of the New Zealand Green Building Council.

The first property carrying a Homestar rating was recently put on the property market in the lower South Island this Spring. Built by Evolution, a division of Rilean Construction, and designed by architect Mark Gray, this 220m2 property at 39 Hackett Road in Jack’s Point received a Homestar Six rating in 2016, which contributed to a premium price at the Bayley’s auction in August.

The rating tool is the New Zealand Green Building Council’s answer to the need for providing independent buyer assurance that a home is genuinely energy-efficient and sustainable and not just marketed as such.

Homestar rates a home on a scale of Six to Ten, with the highest score indicating international best practice. A modern home built to minimum NZ building code would not comply sufficiently to receive a Homestar rating.

“We’ve seen houses in Queenstown real estate marketed as being “energy-efficient” when the only point of difference from a minimum code house is a bit of increased insulation and some solar panels” says Adam Turoa, Sales & Contracts Manager for Evolution. “We encourage our clients to get their homes Homestar rated as a means of certifying that the home we built for them benefits from our holistic approach and increases the return on the investment when it comes time to sell.”

The Hackett Road property commanded the premium price of $1.45 million on the day of auction, compared to a similarly-sized property in the same exclusive development that sold for under $1.1 million.

“There is an awareness amongst the public that living in an energy efficient home brings many advantages in terms of long term health benefits for the occupants and reduction of immediate daily running costs. A win-win situation.” says Beata Pociecha, who represented the home for Bayleys.

Bayleys emphasized the energy-efficient aspects of the home as well as its Homestar rating through their marketing channels and it is believed this contributed heavily to the strong interest in this property.

“People understood and loved the idea, and the home has received passionate response from the buyers that translated on the auction day into a stunning result for the sellers in terms of price,” says Pociecha.

Homes that warrant a Homestar rating, which attributes points primarily to energy, health and comfort and also includes water-use, longevity of purpose and environmental concerns, are generally built by occupants who want to live in the homes. Registration for Homestar ratings has increased tenfold in the last two years, but very few have been put on the property market.

This Queenstown home was one of the first in New Zealand to sell as a Homestar-rated property. The premium price it commanded is largely attributable to the energy-efficient aspects of the home and its independent certification, which validates the purpose of the tool as a means of increasing the value of surpassing minimum code when building a home.

For more information and images, please contact Annabelle Numaguchi at or 021 51 2269.