FirstRate5 software evaluates the energy performance of each part of a house and, by testing the effects of design changes instantly, makes designing for energy efficiency easy. FirstRate5 allocates a point score for various design features leading to an overall rating on a scale from 0 to 6 stars.
The original FirstRate house energy rating software (referred to as FirstRate4) was developed by correlating the energy use predictions of the CSIRO's Nationwide House Energy Rating Software (NatHERS) with building element properties and based on the results of around 55,000 simulations covering the majority of Australian climate zones.
FirstRate5 represents a major upgrade, incorporating the next generation national benchmark software, AccuRate, also developed by CSIRO.
While FirstRate4 can continue to be used by Victorian accredited energy raters for assessing dwellings under the 6 Star standard, FirstRate5 utilises the AccuRate calculation engine and introduces a number of new features such as the ability to zone the house according to the purpose of each room.
As FirstRate4 underestimates the performance of houses with timber sub-floors, it is highly recommended that, if intending to employ this construction method, you seek the services of an energy rater who has been trained in the newer FirstRate5 software.
For more information see:
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an accredited energy rater