Architect designed to achieve the ultimate in thermal performance and an easy approval under Complying Development - up to 60sqm.

Also called a 'secondary dwelling', these small homes can give you a lot of flexibility with extra living space for guests, family, the nanny or solely for rental return. It's a sure way to increase your properties value, while saving the planet.

Small houses can be cost effective, beautiful and very comfortable to live in - which is why we've tried extra hard to maximise the thermal performance and achieve a 10-star NatHERS rating.

We can style it how you want from beach house to Hamptons or just contemporary ...

10 Star Granny Flat Floor Plan
Twinmotion Render

Architect designed homes, Sydney

Northern Beaches | Eastern Suburbs | North Shore

Enjoy a home that is cooler in summer, naturally warmer in winter and cheaper to run all year round.

Adam Pressley FRAIA
Principal Architect

Secondary dwellings

We can show you what's possible on your block, and how to modify or style our design to suit your specific needs. Under CDC, which requires no council approval, the limit on floorspace is 60sqm, but if you are willing to get planning approval, we can enlarge the plan and add additional bedrooms or living areas.

The design we've pictured is Hamptons inspired and we've shown both a timber weatherboard and a painted cedar shingle version.

Reverse brick veneer

One of the secrets to creating a home that requires almost no heating or cooling is to use a walling system that has high thermal mass (brick) on the inside and insulation and lightweight cladding (weatherboard, shingles, Colorbond, fibre-cement etc.) on the outside.

The thermal mass works to maintain the internal temperature and the insulation and cladding works to protect (insulate) it from the outside hot and cold, day / night and seasonal temperatures. It's all part of 'passive solar design' which can massively reduce your energy bills and increase your comfort.

Twinmotion Render

Carbon Neutral Designs

Think about the future with OPTIGY

To achieve a sustainable comfortable home that good for your wallet and for the planet, ask Optigy.

James Gleeson
Assessor from OPTIGY

Understanding NatHERS

The thermal comfort requirements for new homes and additions (NSW) are governed by BASIX (, which set limits on both maximum heating and maximum cooling loads as determined using accredited NatHERS software and protocols.

The output heating and cooling loads from NatHERS software are entered into BASIX to determine a thermal comfort pass or fail for the home, respective to its climate zone. These limits set in BASIX are expected to deliver an overall energy efficiency equivalence of 6 stars NatHERS rating or better.

Nan's Cottage

The achieve 10-stars requires the house to reach a maximum energy use of 6.5mj/sqm per year. To accomplish this very level of performance (and low running cost) we needed to consider many factors such as; the best orientation to north, insulation, construction, materials & colours, window specifications, cross-ventilation paths, external shading & eaves.

Insulated waffle-pod concrete floor slab, dual cavity insulated reverse brick veneer walls and well-insulated ceiling with a reflective roof space in the attic insulate the home from the outside summer heat and winter cold temperature extremes. Ceiling fans to the living areas and bedroom provide relatively low-cost cooling in summer.

Nan's Cottage winter theme render in Twinmotion

Winter is coming theme ...

Nan's Cottage country theme render in Twinmotion

Country theme rendered in Twinmotion

Nan's Cottage vintage theme render in Twinmotion

Vintage theme rendered in Twinmotion

Take a walk through Nan's Cottage

Yes you can navigate through this model directly in your web browser in 3D Full Screen mode.

Nan's Cottage Walk-through

Secondary Dwelling - Concept Design

See your home before you build it ...

Get started now

Email or call 0412 348 575 and speak to our principal Architect about your project.