NatHERS moving from minimum 6 stars to 7 star designs?


In the ever-evolving landscape of environmentally sustainable design, Australia’s Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) has taken a significant step forward. NatHERS, the system responsible for assessing the energy efficiency of residential buildings in Australia, has recently elevated its standards, moving from a minimum requirement of 6-star designs to a new benchmark of 7-star designs. In this blog post, we’ll delve into this groundbreaking development and its implications for the future of sustainable architecture in Australia.


Why the Change?

For those unfamiliar with NatHERS, it’s essential to understand that it plays a pivotal role in reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions in residential buildings. The 6-star standard, which has been in place for years, signified a considerable leap in energy efficiency compared to previous practices. However, as we grapple with the urgency of climate change and the need to minimize our carbon footprint, the Australian government and environmental organizations recognized the need for a more ambitious goal.

  1. Enhanced Energy Efficiency: The shift to 7-star designs means that new residential buildings will be even more energy-efficient. This will translate into reduced energy consumption, lower utility bills, and a smaller environmental footprint for homeowners.

  2. Improved Comfort: Higher-rated buildings tend to provide better indoor comfort, with more stable temperatures throughout the year. This is particularly significant in a country like Australia, with its extreme climate variations.

  3. Economic Savings: While achieving a 7-star rating may require some upfront investment in sustainable design and technologies, the long-term cost savings are substantial. Homeowners can expect reduced energy bills, making sustainable living more affordable in the long run.

  4. Market Value: Properties with higher energy efficiency ratings often have a higher market value and are more attractive to environmentally conscious buyers and renters.

Challenges and Considerations

While the move to 7-star designs is undoubtedly a positive step, it comes with some challenges and considerations:

  1. Design Complexity: Achieving a 7-star rating may require more careful planning and design considerations. Architects and builders will need to pay meticulous attention to insulation, orientation, glazing, and energy-efficient technologies.

  2. Cost: Building to higher energy efficiency standards may entail additional upfront costs. However, it’s crucial to view this as an investment that pays off over time through energy savings.

  3. Education and Training: Architects, builders, and homeowners may need additional education and training to meet the new standards effectively. This can involve learning about new materials, technologies, and construction methods.



The transition from a minimum 6-star to 7-star NatHERS rating for residential buildings marks a significant advancement in Australia’s commitment to sustainable architecture and energy efficiency. It reflects the growing recognition of the urgent need to address climate change and reduce our environmental impact. While it presents challenges and demands more meticulous planning and execution, the benefits in terms of energy savings, comfort, and reduced carbon emissions are well worth the effort. This move sets a new standard for sustainable living in Australia and serves as an inspiring example for countries around the world looking to raise the bar for energy-efficient building design.

Scroll to Top