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Franklin House

As Jigsaw Housing’s prototype sustainable house, our main aim was to create an 8-star energy efficient project home that struck a balance between practicality and affordability.

A small house built on big ideas

Set on a small 30m x 11m block in a newly developed residential area, the 135m2 house performs well above the expectations. Designed for maximum flexibility, the three-bedroom house can be divided into smaller spaces of activity or opened up to give continuity throughout the entire home.

Multifunction spaces, clean lines and a smart layout give it a sense of space, light and simplicity. A key element of the design is its seamless integration with the outdoors. Full-size bi-fold doors open on to private, landscaped courtyards, extending the living spaces well beyond their stated footprint.

Key features

  • 3 bedrooms, 2 living areas, 2 bathrooms (House floor area 136m)
  • 330m2 flat site with orientation
  • Double garage with laundry incorporated
  • Customised joinery including robes, generous kitchen and efficient study
  • Floor finishes include; concrete and tiles
  • Strategically placed courtyards to the north open up the living areas
  • Tailored to the site and designed to our client’s brief and budget


Sustainable elements

  • 8 Star Energy Rating
  • Recycled red brick used as entry feature
  • High performance PVC double-glazing
  • R1 insulated concrete slab (waffle-pod construction plus vertical edge insulation)
  • R2.5 insulation to exterior walls
  • R5 insulation to the roof space
  • Internal walls also insulated to prevent noise transfer and further enhance zoning within the house
  • All gaps around window reveals and doors were sealed with expandable foam, and penetrations through the plasterboard lining of the house were minimised
  • Passive solar heat gain supplemented with hydronic heating via radiator panels
  • Ceiling fans and cross ventilation only forms of cooling needed
  • Motorised awning windows are placed on the high side of the raked ceilings to allow the home to securely purge hot air on summer nights
  • Solar hot water
  • 1.5 kW solar photovoltaic system generates more electricity than the house uses