House Planning Help Podcast

If the idea of going 'off-grid' excites you, then perhaps now is a great time to be doing it. We live in an era where the cost of items such as solar panels is continually dropping and this is juxtaposed with fossil fuel reserves that deplete day by day.

While you may even be forced off-grid if you move to a remote location, does it make sense going off-grid if you have perfectly good access (for example, in a town or village)? And with different grids -transport, gas, water - which is the easiest to unplug from?!

In this discussion (which was one of our Google+ Hangouts) we discuss some of the issues surrounding going off-grid.

The Panel

Mike Coe, who lives in the Cropthorne Autonomous House (and was our guest in episode 54).

Paul Scheckel, author of The Home Energy Diet and The Homeowner's Energy Handbook.

Ken Silverstein, an business journalist who specialises in writing about energy

Direct download: HPH061.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:46pm UTC

Graham Hunter from Parity Projects conducts an energy assessment of a country house. He talks through the process as he goes about it and explains how the collected data will be used.

Direct download: HPH060.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:58am UTC

Andrew Farr from Green Building Store explains what qualities mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR) should bring to a house. He also shares how to make sure you get a system that is properly designed, installed and commissioned.

Direct download: HPH059.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:18am UTC

Chris Parsons from Parsons + Whittley architects shares his experience of the costs behind Passivhaus.

Interview with Chris Parsons

Chris Parsons from Parsons + Whittley architects has always had a focus on making buildings as efficient as they can possibly be. With the issues around global warming and trying to reduce carbon emissions, this is why they found a great synergy with Passivhaus.

Direct download: HPH058.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:19pm UTC

Joe Atkinson explains how the LILAC cohousing community came together and why their project is affordable for everyone.

Direct download: HPH057.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:55am UTC

Piers Taylor from Invisible Studio Architects explains what a build system is, why you would use one over another and whether any are preferable when it comes to creating low energy houses.

Direct download: HPH056.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:18pm UTC

Steve Mouzon from Original Green helps answer a question (from Frank Wiley) about what houses we should be building in areas that are prone to hurricanes or other extreme weather.

Direct download: HPH055.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:57pm UTC

Mike Coe lives in an autonomous house with his partner Lizzie Stoodley. He shares the story behind this self-build project and why it’s ultimately left them with a deeper connection to their environment.

Direct download: HPH054.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:02pm UTC

Mark Tiramani, the self-builder behind the UK’s first certified Passivhaus, shares his experience of building Y Foel and how this got him interested in the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP). He explains what PHPP is and why it’s a valuable tool.

Direct download: HPH053.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:53pm UTC

Lisa Ann Pasquale from Six Cylinder Limited explains what thermal imaging is and how it can be used in quality assuring the construction of low energy buildings.

Direct download: HPH052.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:47pm UTC