Passive systems: Improving the R-value of insulation installed in your home will help you experience a more stable year round temperature, reduce unnecessary ongoing heating and cooling costs, and enjoy a more comfortable living environment.
Site orientation: The sun’s a great heat source so orienting your home to take advantage of sunlight will mean less energy is required to heat it.
Design: Taking advantage of the natural warmth of sunlight during winter can assist in saving energy costs to heat your home. Conversely, shading windows from direct sunlight can help stop your home overheating during summer and incurring cost to cool it.
Active systems: Heaters, heat pumps or fire places can adjust the internal temperature but, because they represent an ongoing cost, shouldn’t be seen as a substitute for appropriate orientation, design or passive systems.
Lifestyle: Different households have different lifestyles. A professional couple who work long hours and have no children will have a different lifestyle, spend different amounts of time at home and different temperature preferences than a family with small children and a stay-athome parent.
Generally speaking, if you get your orientation, design and passive systems (including insulation) right then you’ll spend less money in the long term to heat and ventilate your home adequately.