We’ve designed Nalu homes to deliver everything you need to live a low carbon lifestyle without sacrificing comfort or convenience. Thanks to the smart technology built into each Nalu home, you don’t even need to know how it works – you can simply move in and enjoy the comfort, the low monthly bills, and the knowledge that you’re helping to conserve the planet’s resources.

But, if you’re the type of person that does want to know how it works, then this article is for you. You’ve probably noticed that we regularly refer to Nalu homes as ‘net-zero carbon smart homes’ – but what does that mean? The answer comes in two parts – but they are related. Let’s start with net-zero carbon.


Achieving net-zero carbon


To be classified as a net-zero carbon home, a property needs to produce as much energy as it uses through heating, lighting, and electrical appliances. Most net-zero carbon homes achieve this in two ways – firstly by reducing the amount of energy they require, and secondly by generating their own clean energy.

The key to reducing the amount of energy required to run a home is fabric energy efficiency. A home that is well insulated and draft proof will be more energy efficient, cheaper to run and more comfortable to live in – whatever the weather. Nalu Homes are built from closed cell timber panels filled with earth-wool recycled insulation. They have outstanding insulation properties, and, because they are pre-assembled (even the window frames are built in) they have excellent draft-proofing qualities – far exceeding those required by current building regulations. As a result, Nalu Homes are extremely energy efficient – helping to keep bills down, increase comfort levels, and conserve the planet’s resources.

Having reduced the amount of energy required to run the home, the next step towards reaching net-zero carbon is to enable it to generate its own clean, renewable energy. To this end, all Nalu Homes are equipped with 6.6KW of solar panels – enough to cover the average electricity demand of a domestic residence. But of course, the sun doesn’t shine all the time. And there will be occasions when there’s plenty of sun, but you don’t need to use any electricity. That is why we’ve fitted all Nalu homes with a 6.5 kWh battery as standard. The combination of solar panels and battery storage enables the home to generate electricity when the sun shines and use it whenever it’s needed. The battery also enables the home to draw electricity from the grid (on a green tariff of course) when prices are low and use it at peak times.

So that’s how we’ve created your net-zero carbon home: by ensuring that it has high thermal efficiency (and takes less energy to run) and building in a renewable energy system that generates and stores energy from the sun. But isn’t it complicated to run? In a word, ‘no’.

That’s where the ‘smart’, in net-zero carbon smart home comes in.


 Adding the smart bit


We understand that, while you want to do your bit to help the planet, you’re busy. What you really want is a warm, comfortable home that just ‘works’ – and doesn’t cost the earth (either literally or figuratively). But, to get the most out of your solar panels and battery storage system, you need to carefully balance when to generate, store, and use your energy. So how do you do this without in-depth knowledge of fluctuations in electricity tariffs and demand?

Enter the Nalu Intelligent Living Platform.

The renewable energy system in your Nalu Home is controlled by the intelligent living platform. This platform detects patterns in your daily energy use and combines this knowledge with information about the weather, daylight hours and hourly electricity tariffs to optimise the use of your renewable energy assets. It will even occasionally use electricity from the grid to charge the batteries, but only when the prices are at their lowest.

So, for example, if you put the kettle on during peak tariff times, the platform will draw energy from your battery to save you money. It might then recharge the battery from the grid at night-time when electricity prices are at their lowest. On the other hand, if the intelligent living platform knows that it will be sunny next day, it may not charge the battery at night at all – allowing the solar panels to do the job for free.

All you need to do is set the heating for your required comfort levels using our handy app and relax. You can even use the app to control your lighting or choose some background music, thanks to Sonos integration.


Putting it all together


So, there you have it. By combining ultra-high levels of draft-proofing and insulation with an intelligent renewable energy system, we’ve created a comfortable, hassle free, net-zero carbon smart home that’s ready for you to move in and enjoy.


P.S. if you want to take the next step and embrace net zero-emissions transport, we’ve got that covered too. Each Nalu home is equipped with a 7KW system for charging electric vehicles.