Looking for technical information or design inspiration? HOUSING has rounded up a few supporting tools to narrow your search and advance your knowledge in the new year.


Designory ideas 

The Designory is a curated trove of home design ideas, products and material selection. The projects highlight ways to incorporate neutral tones or bring the outdoors inside, while the Designory’s online store, The Design Hunter, sells home products from local artists and designers. 

Instagram: @thedesignory


Interactive and green

The Build It Back Green initiative was developed by Green Cross Australia as a response to the Victorian Black Saturday bushfires, and in light of the 2019-2020 bushfires, selecting resilient rebuilding materials is as important as ever. To help with material selection there is an interactive guide that lists the best materials to use and where to source them. 


NBN training program

ABCB 2021 Cadetship Program 

The Australian Building Codes Board has announced that applications for its 2021 Cadetship are now open. The 12-month program – located in Canberra – provides participants with an insight into the development of the National Construction Code and the opportunity to develop skills relevant to the construction industry.

Applicants with qualifications in building or plumbing, or relevant industry experience, can apply by visiting the ABCB website.

Applications close Monday 21 September 2020.

container homes

Consider containers 

Container Homes is the perfect Instagram page to look at when trying to spark some unique inspiration for home design. The company creates residential buildings from shipping containers as well as transforming traditional home building materials into the conventional appearance of a container through rectangular features.

Instagram: @container_houses

net-poitive design

Sustainability star

Leading theorist on sustainable housing design, Janis Birkeland, has released her latest book Net-Positive Design and Sustainable Urban Development. It presents micro-level reforms in new sustainable planning analysis and collaborative design processes. She has also implemented a digital design computer app called STARfish that outlines net-positive benchmarks and includes features that correct the conceptual problems of green building rating tools.

The book is available at leading retailers and STARfish can be downloaded at

your home

Making your eco-home

The latest government guide in building eco-friendly homes has now been released. The book Your Home: Australia’s guide to environmentally sustainable homes 5th edition, has been written by architects, designers and builders for Australian practitioners and homeowners. The Australian Government says the manual is a ‘powerful tool for making your home great to live in, affordable to build and efficient to run’. 

Cost: $38.50 incl GST

HIA training

Training support

Now is the perfect time to sit down and brush up on your knowledge and engage in some up-to-date training. HIA offers a number of state and federal government supported courses and qualifications to HIA members who meet certain criteria – putting money back in your pocket. The HIA website provides in-depth information on how to make a claim in each state and territory. 

TAFE is also offering a number of free online short courses across Australia to get you through COVID-19 quarantine. 

Hunting for inspiration? Hunting for George is dedicated to providing a unique approach to inspiration for home design. The company’s Instagram features modern design styles for home exteriors and interiors, and alternative ways to vamp up a project.
The HIA Charitable Foundation (HIACF) has been in partnership with Beyond Blue for the past five years working towards improving the mental health of those in the building industry, where one in four people are affected by anxiety, depression and substance abuse. In December 2019, the HIACF donated $100,000 to Beyond Blue to support its work in offering mental health resources and support for sufferers. HIA members can access resources about managing mental health illnesses as well as how to approach conversations with colleagues, friends and family by visiting HIA or Beyond Blue
Beyond Blue support services are available via phone on 1300 22 4636, email or online chat forum
Keeping up with industry changes can prove exhausting, which is why HIA works hard to provide practical help and advice to members year-round. But if you’re ever looking for a quick reference point online, the Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) website has a surprising mix of tools and resources beyond the National Construction Code. 
Be sure to watch the video detailing verification methods in the National Construction Code. It compares a building’s energy usage with a reference building model, teaching you how to meet the minimum performance requirements of a six-star design. 

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