Sustain & Enable Limited
Sustain and Enable is an Environmental Social Enterprise – a business set up to design and enable environmentally sustainable projects for the benefit of the planet and provide goods and services to individuals and organisations that enhance and encourage sustainable living best practice.
The majority of our team are volunteers but because we are about sustainability, some key team members do draw a salary to enable them to help others. Profits are directed into public good services and worthwhile initiatives that would not otherwise happen due to lack of funds.
Auckland has a critical shortage of affordable, accessible, warm, dry, safe, comfortable, healthy homes, whether you are an owner-occupier or a renter. People are being forced to live in cars, garages or overcrowded conditions; others are unable to find a home at all.
Sustain and Enable believes there are a number of ways to help alleviate this housing crisis, albeit over time.
Changing Our Thinking
First we need to change the way we think about property. We need to build up and out to be able to accommodate the additional number of people projected for Auckland. People need to decide if they really need to live in the big smoke, and businesses need to think about other places in NZ they could employ people to do the same work and about allowing their employees the flexibility to work outside the office more often.
We also need to build new homes cheaply but to a high standard, incorporating sustainable practices that actually cost less to build and live in than traditional homes.
Lastly, we need to look at economical ways to retrofit existing homes that don’t meet present day minimum building code standards. By adding or improving insulation, ventilation, heating and efficiency of devices we can help reduce hospital admissions through ill-health and lower the cost of living.
Sustainable living really does begin at home. We can all learn how to use the homes we already live in, better. This could be incorporating materials and technologies, but may simply be a matter of changing our thinking about how we can use our resources like power and water more efficiently.
If you are building a new home, we can advise you on the design and technology options to incorporate for an energy-efficient, cost efficient and economical new home that is healthy, warm, dry and safe for your family and doesn’t compromise on the lifestyle you wish to live.
In fact, if the right technologies are applied carefully then a sustainable home can be cheaper to build than traditional style modern homes and be a lot more comfortable to live in. It doesn’t have to be filled with high tech modern conveniences and green technologies, but you will get good results if you face it in the right direction and design it to minimise heat loss.
Educating the Builders
Sustain and Enable is not only working with individuals to achieve better housing outcomes. We are also working with home builders, property developers and specifiers to encourage new approaches to the way housing developments are achieved. Take, for example, mixed housing. This can bring together within the one subdivision, stand-alone homes, townhouses and apartments with smaller footprints and more than one storey, leaving room for a productive garden to help feed the people who live there.
We are also looking at helping people to develop ‘intentional’ communities where a group of homes share some space and facilities but also have some private areas.
Let’s Make Your Home More Sustainable
If you are planning a new home or renovation talk to us during the planning stage about how we can save you money and incorporate sustainable alternatives into your design. Because we are a social enterprise, we can also arrange HomeStar Appraised, Designed and Built rating assessments for you at lower than normal market prices.
Existing buildings: If your home has drafts, mould, streaming windows, cold or damp talk to us about how we can make your house healthier for your family or tenants and the customised reports we can write to show you if you comply with the new legislation and how to remediate any issues.