living room metricon zero net home
The Delta 29MR by Metricon Homes its first ever Zero Net Carbon Home

To celebrate Sustainable House Day in 2019, Metricon Homes launched its first ever Zero Net Carbon Home. This display – the Delta 29MR – was built in Officer, Victoria, and is available to inspect today to prove that Zero Net Carbon Homes look no different to any other.

What is a Zero Net Carbon Home?

You might have heard the term “Zero Net Carbon Home” before – but what exactly does it mean? A Zero Net Carbon Home is a home that is designed, built and tested for energy-efficiency and comfort. It is specifically designed to be cooler in summer and warmer in winter, aiming to maximise energy efficiency and lower greenhouse gas emissions. It’s a home designed to save you money over the term of your ownership and to ensure comfortable living through consistent indoor temperatures; which means a win for your hip pocket, and the environment.

How do you build one?

If you’re interested in building your very own Zero Net Carbon Home, here are the features of the Delta 29MR that helped Metricon achieve Zero Net Carbon.

Solar Power System

The first one might be the most obvious – equip your home with a solar power system. Solar panels on the roof convert sunlight into affordable, sustainable energy. That saves you money on your power bills.

You can further enhance your solar system by adding a solar battery. These batteries store excess power captured during the day and allows you to use it at night or during overcast periods.

Benefits of a solar power system:

  • Renewable energy source
  • Can reduce electricity bills
  • Low maintenance
  • Can be used in areas without access to the energy grid


You might not be able to see the insulation, but it’s one of the most important considerations when building a sustainable home. Insulation works hard to increase thermal efficiency of your home. It’s fitted into the ceilings, walls (including wet areas) and façade and works to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer. Insulation has an “R-value” to indicate how efficient it is. You’ll find insulation with a higher than standard rating inside a Zero Net Carbon Home.

Benefits of high R-Value insulation:

  • Increases thermal efficiency, keeping your home hotter in winter, cooler in summer
  • Less reliance on heating/air-conditioning – your power bills will likely reduce

Draught Seals

I’m sure we’ve all felt a cool breeze coming through the cracks in a door or wall during winter. This is one of the quickest ways to lose heat in a home – through the gaps between your doors, walls, air vents, skirtings and the ground.

Draught seals minimise heat and cool leakage, keeping you warmer in winter and cooler in summer without relying on heating/air-conditioning. They also make your home a whole lot more comfortable by keeping nasty dust and pollutants out.

Benefits of draught seals:

  • Increases thermal efficiency
  • Can reduce power bills
  • Great for allergy and asthma sufferers as they minimise dust and allergens

Double-Glazed Windows

This is important in any energy efficient home – double glaze your windows. Trapping air between two panes of glass is a smart energy-efficient move. It acts as a barrier to keep warm air in during winter and hot air out during summer. It also provides you with more security as they’re harder to break!

Benefits of double glazing:

  • Increases thermal efficiency
  • Can reduce power bills
  • Harder to break and more secure
  • Limits condensation, mould and dust

Extraction Fans with Humidity Sensor

This might be a new feature to you. Having ceiling extraction fans with humidity sensors means they automatically detect excess moisture and switch on to reduce condensation, and automatically switch off. They only work when needed, saving energy and reducing your power bills. They’re another great option for anyone with asthma and allergies and they’ll minimise dust in your home.

Benefits of a fan equipped with a humidity sensor:

  • Automatically works when needed
  • Reduces mould and mildew
  • Saves energy
  • Minimises dust – great for people with asthma and allergies

LED Light Bulbs

Finally, LED lighting is an excellent energy efficiency measure – although you’ve probably already heard people talk to the benefits of LED over the last few years. LED light bulbs require much less wattage than compact fluorescent lamps or incandescent light bulbs. And they last longer than other bulbs too.

Benefits of LED light bulbs:

  • Low energy use – can decrease downlight wattage by 75% or more
  • Can reduces electricity bills
  • Low maintenance
  • Long lifespan

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  1. So if you have an extraction fan that senses moisture, where does the fresh air come from….? Oops. This isn’t good practice let alone best practice. With this design it will just induce air to come in through all the cracks in the poor construction as per business as usual which could lead to all sorts of issues Especially if you’ve accidentally made it airtight. Otherwise you’re reliant on opening the window, letting all the noise in, your noise out, smells and pollutants in (e.g. Cars and bushfires) and you can forgot the efficiency of the air conditioning system with the window open. You’ve got to chose between acoustic comfort, air quality and energy consumption vs fresh air. Lovely.

    A legitimate design solution would be an energy recovery ventilation (ERV) system to provide fresh air AND extract the stale air, transferring the heat from the inside of the house to the incoming air and managing dust, moisture etc. whilst providing fresh air from a clean source and even through a filter. This system could operate and maintain clean fresh air levels without compromising acoustics and privacy whilst reducing energy consumption through reusing the heat already in your home.

    Next time just ask for a Passivhaus 😉 if looking for a simple way of doing this properly.

  2. That is great news! However, the article has just provided principles of such a design – would be really Helpful to know the features specific to the house eg size of solar power, battery size, R value of the insulation in various elements etc.