Passive solar gains: Passive solar gain -- that is, the captured warmth of the sun -- is a primary source
of heat for a passive house, so the situation of the home on the section is important.
The size and position of windows are important factors.
Orientation of the house to the sun movement arc is an important consideration.
However, houses built on slopes which receive little natural sunshine ( such as some well-publicised sections / subdivisions in Dunedin where people want to build so they can have views of the southern ocean ), can still benefit greatly if they are built to the passive house standard. The will have hugely improved insulation, air-tightness controlled air supply,heat exchange and filtration, and much reduced need for gas and electricity for heating - with very significantly reduced cost as well.
They can still use technology to harvest some heat from the sun.
Would you like to see a passive house in New Zealand now?
You can follow the blog of the first build at
New Zealand's first Passive house blog-spot
Another NZ passive-house is documented on-line, on facebook. If you are a facebook user, you should have no problems viewing these pages.
A New Zealand Passive house set of informative pages
A New Zealand Passive house - the base page
Congratulations to Brooke the Architect (MOAA Architects) for what looks like a thorough job, and likewise the builder for following instructions so well. Lots of construction detail in here.
Links to pages about the seven precepts of Passive House design.
Very efficient Insulation
No thermal bridges
Passive solar gain
Prices / costs