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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

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    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2017
     
    Anyone know of any ways to make it more affordable for a self-renovator like myself? Either some sort of discount, or maybe a way of making it better value (e.g. combination with a course or something)...?
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2017
     
    When I build my house I set my own targets, didn't pay any fees to other organisations, did pay for a thermal model and had one run on the very good and free Canadian Hot 2000 now probably Hot3000 to check predictions.

    Work on what you want to achieve, spend money on insulation, not fees.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2017
     
    I'm not paying money on certification, I just want an accurate energy model of the proposed renovations.
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2017
     
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 2nd 2017
     
    Can it do:

    - Overheating analysis
    - Incremental retrofit
    - Complicated house shape (downstairs different shape to upstairs with lean-tos)

    ?

    I watched some videos but couldn't see those.

    I am aiming to achieve something like AECB Silver (off the top of my head) but not certified. I want to play with the variables until I get the performance I want, iterating that alongside Sketchup for the look and also an eye on the budget.
  1.  
    I have PHPP v8 and would say it is very reasonable (given the equivalent cost of, say CAD software generally) and has a lot of functionality that, as you've pointed out above, is difficult to replicate in a single package elsewhere.

    At the time the SketchUp plugin (designPH) was not really worth the extra expense in my view. I had the time to input the data manually and wasn't convinced that automating this would be any more productive - you still have to check the numbers to be sure. It feels like something that was developed for those that are confident in PHPP and not in SketchUp and I was the other way around.

    Buying through the AECB was, I think, a marginally cheaper way to do it - you can join for a certain annual fee and then you get about that much off the cost of the software licence so effectively membership is included in the price.

    Finally I'd just say keep an ear to the ground for new releases. Just after I bought mine and signed up for the Passivhaus course, the Institut announced the biggest shake-up to Passivhaus since its inception - namely the 'Classic', 'Plus' and 'Premium' flavours. Doesn't affect my build, but if I was a self-employed professional relying on PHPP advice as an income stream I'd be forced to upgrade to stay on top of the new standards. Nothing worse than buyers remorse when you find out that waiting a few weeks would have got the new model for the same price...
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 7th 2017 edited
     
    Thanks Tom. Coupling with AECB membership sounds like a decent idea.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 8th 2017
     
    And you get the brillant, indispensable, data-filled Passive House Plus mag as well
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 8th 2017
     
    Posted By: Doubting_Thomas
    Buying through the AECB was, I think, a marginally cheaper way to do it - you can join for a certain annual fee and then you get about that much off the cost of the software licence so effectively membership is included in the price.
    Having looked at this, turns out membership costs £54 (for a year) and the saving is £18ish so it doesn't quite pay for itself... So it depends whether AECB membership is worth £36 to me.
  2.  
    Hmm.

    You're right, I think I was signing up for the Passivhaus course at the same time. Looking online the course fees are £400 cheaper for AECB members, so I was probably factoring that in.

    As Fostertom says above though, you do get Passive House Plus mag as part of the AECB membership so you'll need to work out whether that's worth £3 a month to you...
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2017
     
    Is Passive House Plus just H&R style eye candy or is it any good?
  3.  
    It's about 50% adverts (which publication isn't these days?!) and about 40% useful details and articles - particularly the section where they tell you all the products used and u-values etc. The last 10% is snazzy photographs. That's a better ratio than most industry publications.

    To get a flavour, you can order the first copy free I think if you register your interest. More importantly you can also look through all their old issues online. In light of the second point this you may decide you don't want to shell out. All comes down to whether you like physical copies of mags for later reference, reading on the loo etc...
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2017 edited
     
    Or look online.

    PH+ is seriously more substantial that almost any other trade mag I know - which are too often hack-journalist rewrites of press releases.

    PH+ does write its main articles in an irritatingly Homes n Gardens style (which it seems to be proud of, as accessible journalism) but it's worth wading through that, reading between the lines, and the data incl cost/m2 at the end of each study is unique and invaluable.

    The adverts are useful source notes too.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2017
     
    Thanks...
    • CommentAuthoralexc
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2017
     
    PH+
    I really like it. Sometimes there are pieces from 'the I have so much money i do not know what to do with pov' (ie as Tom noted above). In general tho, very knowledge building. As for the 40% of adverts. I am always wanting to see what is around. 30% something, 10% okay you have my attention/seen it noted. If AECB membership is 54 per year..i think i may sign up! I thought it was over 200, thus the free magazine. Extremely well priced. shame about about the multi year sub i have
    I stare at screens's the whole day, so staring at screens in off hours is not my thing.
    You have quite a bit of data online with ph+ about builds.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2017
     
    Thanks. £54 is individual membership, trade is more. Students can also get it cheaper.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 10th 2017
     
    I took the plunge.
    • CommentAuthorgravelld
    • CommentTimeAug 31st 2017
     
    Just wanted to follow up on this.

    Altogether I'm happy I did this. There does appear to be some useful extra info opened up on the AECB website. And Passive House Plus is actually pretty good. Lots of detail.
    •  
      CommentAuthorfostertom
    • CommentTimeAug 31st 2017 edited
     
    The latest PH+ is a stonker - staggeringly good, even as technical mags go, which so often descend into semi-informed journalism at best. The cost of producing all that high quality original material must be eye watering. Plus several pieces on the Grenfell scandal - trenchant anger informed by deep fact-research combined with Irish heart-felt tragedy. And one of the most beautiful buildings (Japanese) I've seen for a long time (tho it's not clear how it's remotely Passive!). So worth the AECB sub.
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