However, I've just sat through 30 minutes of "Building your dream home" (recorded a week or so ago) with a prime example of a pretentious and clearly ignorant architect who had just designed a £350k mobile home that met Passivhaus certification standards. Her level of ignorance regarding the physics of passive house design and construction, and her completely false statements about there being a substantial cost premium associated with meeting such a performance standard were simply beyond belief. For example, she stated that MVHR used recycling and mixing extracted air with incoming fresh air for heat recovery. She also mentioned the need for lots of South facing glazing for summer solar gain (which is plainly completely idiotic - the house will be like a bloody greenhouse!). She went on to say it could be heated in winter by, quote, "one person and a candle" which is total rubbish. She also showed a massive array of completely redundant high tech wizardry, and stated that this "essential" stuff added a lot of cost, but that this would be recovered as energy costs continued to increase. The reality is that it costs no more (in our case around 10% less) to build a passive house than a conventional house.
I appreciate that this programme seems to be a sales pitch for architects, and if they are competent and do a good job (as some in the series have) then all is well and good. However, when they choose to feature architects who clearly don't have a bloody clue when it comes to design, construction or costs of passive houses, yet profess to be "experts", then I'm afraid it makes my blood boil.
The good news is that, out of the eleven architects who have now visited our build, two have got what it takes to get to grips with the melding of science, art, technology and design that has to happen for a good low, or zero, energy house design. We need architects, as they can definitely add great value to the design and detail of a house. However, it seems to me that the profession is way, way behind the curve when it comes to low/zero energy design and the need for working closely with the engineering and technology disciplines that are an essential part of any house of this type.
Edited by jsharris, 27 June 2014 - 08:36 PM.