Sage Choice has won Geelong’s Business Excellence award for most sustainable business for the second year. The Sage Farm philosophy is built on 5R’s – Reuse, Repurpose, Recycle, Regenerate, Respect. The architect designed 6.5 star home built in 2011 overlooking the Moorabool Valley has many sustainable features and materials including: local limestone, sustainable timbers, concrete slab, cleistry windows, skillion roof and H-shape layout to protect from prevailing winds. Sustainable fixtures and fittings include: solar hot water system, Q-showers (recirculating shower systems), wood fired heater, LED lighting, flexible shading and no active cooling (AC). A 10kW rooftop PV system generates 65% of household energy and power monitor shows energy utilisation. 330kL of water storage allows for 60% of mains (including water for 40+ head of cattle).

Chris will be explaining his approach to broad acre composting, regenerative beef farming and artisan butchery. Children can check the animals on kids4kids farm tours.  The Krugers will be showcasing their famous chicken feeder.

Experts onsite:
  • Sustainable Farmer – Owner, Chris.
  • Chicken feeder & bespoke metalwork – Krugers Sheetmetal
Why visit this property:
  • See why Sage Farm is no ordinary farm?
  • Find out what’s a chook tractor?
  • Absorb stunning views over Moorabool Valley
  • Join in the Kids4kids farm tours
Like more info? Read the #1 House Flyer


Barwon Water’s new $32m headquarters, Ryrie HQ has totally rejuvenated the 1970s building, transforming it into a contemporary commercial office with a 5 Green Star rating. The eco-friendly approach saved over a million kilograms of CO2 emissions by retaining most of the building’s concrete and steel. The new building halves the previous maintenance, operational and energy costs. The modern design features a glass-walled infill connecting the north and south sections, innovative sun-shading façade, stormwater-irrigated rain garden, rooftop terrace, community café and open-plan layout for 350 staff.

Experts onsite:
  • Barwon Water project officers
Why visit this property:
  • Don’t miss your chance to tour Ryrie HQ on its first public viewing
  • Check out Geelong’s amazing & dynamic skyline from the rooftop terrace
Like more info? Read the #2 House Flyer


This new 8.2 star home on Highton hill has sweeping view. Built for a couple by Homes With Integrity, this elegant and sophisticated home has won several industry awards.  Designed with sustainable edge, the home features phase change material, double glazed windows, LED lighting, rooftop solar power and thermal mass in the form of polished concrete floors.

Experts onsite:
Why visit this property:
  • Experience north facing living spaces firsthand – discover why passive solar orientation is so important
  • See why this home won the 2017 MBAV Regional Award & was a National finalist in 2017 HIA Greensmart Award
Like more info? Read the #3 House Flyer


Lepus House is a brand new 8.2 star, off grid, straw bale home made from onsite, recycled and salvaged materials by SO’R Construction. The timber eaves of the North-facing family home are calculated to maximise winter warmth, whilst fending off summer heat. The house is fully off-grid, featuring a stand alone solar energy system, stainless steel water tanks, Sanden heat pump and a combustion stove for cooking over winter.

The home has incredible thermal mass from its external straw bale walls and internal cob walls. The house features traditional timber framing, using mortise and tenon joins. Reclaimed materials are used throughout the home including all the glazing.

Experts onsite:
Why visit this property:
  • Discover the benefits of living in a straw bale house!
  • Fascinated by timber framing using mortise and tenon joins
  • Keen to see battery storage setups?
Like more info? Read the #4 House Flyer


This new 7.7 star, large family home and office was built by Little Constructions. The passive solar designed home has a rural aspect set back from the road, Without mains water it uses tank water for all purposes. The home is fully off grid home with a Lithium battery setup (which is the newer technology compared to the more common lead acid type). The back-up generator has not been required despite the energy needs of this growing family. A slow combustion heater/stove is supplied by wood from the property. While the property’s garden is still a work-in-progress, visitors are invited to tour the adjoining expansive orchard.

Experts onsite:
Why visit this property:
  • Find answers to your questions about off grid solar?
  • Check out the new technology Lithium battery setup?
Like more info? Read the #5 House Flyer

No. 6 DRYSDALE (garden only)

The expansive grounds of this 1880s former vicarage in Drysdale’s main street will delight visitors. The lovely garden has many sections featuring natives, exotics, fruit trees, grapevines, berry patches and raised veggie beds.  Owner, Jill who is a founding member of the Drysdale Harvest Basket group, prunes her fruit trees and grapevines to a manageable height for netting and picking. The orchard of mature espaliered fruit trees is very impressive. A highlight is the gorgeous courtyard kitchen garden filled with herbs, citrus, fruit trees and vines. Learn about the Landshare arrangement whereby another couple is transforming a neglected section using permaculture principles.

Experts onsite:
  • Accomplished edible gardeners  – Owners (Jill and Michael) & several other gardening gurus
  • Hydronic heating, heat pump HWS – Nicky & Jo, LEAP Ltd
Why visit this property:
  • Check out the gorgeous courtyard kitchen garden
  • Be impressed by the espaliered fruit trees
  • Chat with Jo from LEAP Ltd who’ll have a display on the back verandah to learn about reducing your energy costs through heat pumps, hydronic heating and more efficient plumbing design
Like more info? Read the #6 House Flyer


The Castle is a family weatherboard home adjacent the Bellarine Rail Trail, which is readily identified by its quirky garden art. The East-West orientation gives the site a delightful northerly aspect. The owners exemplify sustainable living and underpinned by their creativity and DIY skills. The large productive garden has 20 no-dig garden boxes supplying year round veggies. Chooks forage in and help fertilise the garden. They preserve excess produce and even make their own salami & sauerkraut. Multiple water tanks store over 40,000 litres, sufficient for both house and garden. Inside the home is being slowly renovated with a recent kitchen upgrade and progressive installation of double glazed timber windows. Their slow combustion stove and heater runs on locally sourced wood.There is a 2.6Kw PV solar system & solar hot water system.

Experts onsite:
  • Sustainable gurus, edible gardeners & DIY experts  – Owners (Karin & Leon)
Why visit this property:
  • Wander around this fun productive garden
  • Learn how to create a no-dig veggie box
Like more info? Read the #7 House Flyer


This newly completed  7+ star home and future BnB has been orientated for thermal performance, the bay views and creating a protected outdoor area. The architect designed, built by home SO’R Construction was a National Finalist in the 2017 HIA Greensmart Awards. As owner Anne became increasingly aware of the Earth’s dwindling resources so did her desire for a more sustainable and natural lifestyle. Once established, she aims to be sufficient in power, food and water.

Sustainable features include: extra draft sealing and insulation, rammed earth fireplaces, polished concrete floor, double glazed windows, wood heater and large water tanks connected to whole house. Fittings include: recycled and upcycled materials, LED Lighting, energy efficient appliances, low flow tapware, grid connected 5.2 kW PV system,power monitoring, heat pump HWS and worm farm black water treatment.

Experts onsite:
Why visit this property:
  • Talk to the various technical experts onsite
  • Inspect the rammed earth fire places
  • Check out the worm sewerage system


This large straw bale farmhouse was owner built with help from woofers in 2009. The entire property is off grid powered by a small rooftop solar system and a small wind turbine. This modest supply is adequate due to the energy efficient light fittings and appliances. A self sufficient wood supply fuels the slow combustion stove and wet back water heater.This house has many sustainable features including: radial sawn timber fascias, recycled and salvaged materials. Explore the large productive garden with raised no dig beds and orchard surrounding the farmhouse. Outflow from the septic system is filtered through a reed bed pond.
NOTE: Google maps does not accurately direct you to this home, which is about 300m West on Swan Bay Rd from its intersection with the Port-Queenscliff Rd.

Experts onsite:
  • Sustainable farmer & owner builder – Owners (Robert & Kirsty)
Why visit this property:
  • Discover what it’s like to live in a straw bale house?
  • Find out how to build with straw bales & render the walls
  • Check out the bank of recycled lead acid batteries
  • Explore the productive garden & orchard
Like more info? Read the #9 House Flyer


Samphire House is a new 7.5 star home, completed in 2016, as the seachange retirement home. The light-filled adaptable compact home nestles amidst teatree adjacent Edwards Point Reserve overlooking Swan Bay. Owner, Sue carefully researched the home’s design and selected building materials, fixtures and fittings to maximise quality, aesthetics, value, energy efficiency and overall sustainability. Sustainable features including: double glazed windows, louvres, LED lighting, efficient appliances, ceiling fans, reverse cycle AC, thermal chimney, phase change material in the roof, wood heater/stove,  4.5kW PV solar, power monitoring, 13,000 litre water tank connects to house, grey water system. The garden has shade trees, permeable paths/driveways, water wise natives, espaliered fruit trees, edible garden and chicken coop.

Experts onsite:
Why visit this property:
  • An inspiring home for anyone planning a new build or renovation
  • Tap into the owner’s extensive research into sustainable products
  • Find out what phase change material does
Like more info? Read the #10 House Flyer

Major Sponsors & In-kind Supporters:

Award winning properties

  • Sage Farm at Bannockburn (#1)    – 2017 &  2016 winner of Geelong Business Excellence Award for best sustainable business
  • Highton (#3) – MBAV (Master Builders Association of Victoria) 2017 Regional Award Winner for Best Sustainable Home and 2017 National Finalist in 2017 HIA Greensmart Awards
  • Drysdale (#7) – 2017 National Finalist in  HIA (Housing Industry of Australia) Greensmart Awards