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By Lizette Salmon, Albury Wodonga Sustainable Living Festival event officer

Are you building, renovating or wanting to live in a more energy efficient home?

This weekend, there will be four free events to help you, including a tiny house experience, speed dates with a sustainable building designer, a workshop on sustainable house design and a tour of Elmwood Living Estate.

Saturday’s Sustainable Living Fair in Junction Square will feature two tiny houses, one made locally and the other by Tesla, both open 9am to 1pm. Australia boasts the largest average house size in the world, but with rising energy prices and a desire for lower maintenance, our bloated buildings will become relics of the past. Tiny houses, at around 12 square metres are too small for most, but they are a growing trend in the United States.

The tiny homes lifestyle movement encapsulates the positives of downsizing. Each home sleeps two people and includes a shower, toilet, kitchen, fold-down bed and cupboard space, with Tesla’s home demonstrating how Powerwall and solar can be integrated to power an entire home.

This year’s speed date a sustainability consultant event will offer three types of expertise – a permaculture garden design guru, an energy consultant and a building designer. Bring your garden plans, energy bills or house designs and book in a 15-minute free consultation between 10am to 12pm at the fair.

The Goods Shed at Junction Square will feature a Sustainable House Design workshop from 1pm to 4pm on Saturday. The SOAP (Sun, Open Space, Access, Privacy) House Design Association will discuss the latest trends in building sustainable houses in a workshop aimed at all those interested in building, investing, developing or renovating their property.

Finally, at 2pm on Sunday you can learn how Elmwood Living in Wodonga achieves its 8.5 star energy rating homes, with a tour highlighting their waffle pod concrete slabs, double-glazing, insulation, solar electricity, solar-boosted water, natural lighting, water saving fittings and more. Developer Brendon Collins will explain how a two-bedroom home with two occupants can cost as little to run as $3.70 a day in water, power and gas.

For more on the Sustainable Living Fair please visit http://wod.city/SLF2017. The Festival is brought to you by Wodonga and AlburyCity Councils and proudly sponsored by OzGreen Energy and Halve Waste.