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Sustainable House Day 2019

Updated 3 September with details of additional homes open in the area, bringing the total to eight!

Sunday September 15th is shaping up to be a cracker Sustainable House Day in the Macedon Ranges.

Five of our member families have generously volunteered to open their homes to share their experience in making their homes more comfortable, more energy efficient and cheaper to run, and our MRSG volunteers will be on hand to help everyone have an enjoyable and rewarding experience. A few other homes open in the area bring the total to eight within easy travelling distance.

There are two mudbrick houses, three strawbale houses and a couple constructed from more familiar materials. There are custom builds and homes that are evolving over time, places “in town” and places on acreage, people who’ve been working on their homes for over 30 years and people who are relative rookies. What they all have is people who are passionate about making their homes work better and sharing their experiences to helping others start or continue their own improvements.

Check out:

Anne Road Strawbale House in Woodend township: owner-built, last opened for SHD in 2017

The Cool Temperate Brick Veneer Retrofit at Newham: a “run of the mill” brick veneer saving electricity and becoming warmer in winter through a range of simple measures. First time open for SHD

Jocks Gully at Ashbourne (EV): a mud brick, net-positive energy house (follow the map carefully for this one!)

Lot 6 in Woodend (EV): mud brick house with a permaculture garden - including mushrooms. There is also a new solar carport to charge an electric vehicle. A representative of Evergen, who installed the solar system for the carport, will be in attendance to explain the system.

Ultimate Dream House in Woodend township: custom built all-electric home for its owners to “age in place”: lots of great ideas

Noonameena at Redesdale: a passive house constructed from straw panels. A popular destination in 2018, back in 2019

Ram Rock at Benloch (EV): an off-grid house built using insulated concrete forms and solar electricity. The house generates enough electricity to also charge an electric vehicle.

Inga Linga Strawbale House at Woodend: strawbale and stone for insulation and thermal mass, opening for the first time in 2019

A few special inclusions this year are:

  • A focus on sustainable transport: electric vehicles (EV) will be on display at three of the houses and their owners will be there to talk about them.

  • A focus on “waste”. If you’re starting to think about how your household will survive the change to fortnightly collection of red bins as the Food Organics Garden Organics program is rolled out from next year, come and see our householders for some tips and demonstration of practical segregation strategies.

  • An assessor for the Victorian Residential Efficiency Scorecard will be on hand at Newham to talk about how the new Scorecard program works and how it can help you improve the efficiency of your place.

To visit, you need to register at Registration is free, will give you access to the addresses of the properties, and helps with event planning. Some of the houses will be collecting donations on the day. The money raised will be used to fund activities run through the year by the MRSG Sustainable Homes Action Group.

Macedon Ranges Shire Council is running a free bus tour of some of the homes, for local residents. Places are limited, so book soon if you are interested.

We are still recruiting people to help the day run smoothly. No experience is required and with shifts of just a couple of hours you don’t need to miss out on the visitor experience. (You could do the bus tour in the morning and volunteer for the afternoon …) Contact us at or come and see us at the Farmers’ Market in Woodend on September 7th.

With eight homes open close by, it’s easy to plan a great day out. If you are coming from Melbourne or Bendigo, be prepared for the Ranges’ cool spring temperatures (up to 5°C cooler than our neighbouring centres) with a jumper or a coat.

We look forward to welcoming you on Sustainable House Day and helping you with your home improvements.

Earlier Event: September 15
Malmsbury Food Swap