We recently spoke with Gusto Homes about smart living, sustainable communities and the company’s new ‘Home of the Future’ development.
How did Gusto get started?
Steff Wright, CEO of Gusto Group and a pioneer of smart living for thirty years, started the company with his brother Jerome in 1987 and the Gusto Group now employs over 150 people with a turnover in excess of £25 million. Group companies include, Rototek, SGA Architects, Gusto Homes. Gusto Construction and Global Grad.
Steff and his family live in one of his own properties at Gusto’s fabulous Woodlands Edge development in Lincoln. A low carbon community of 29 solar powered properties where residents all have access to allotments, ponds and 5 acres of woodland. It’s interesting that 33% of the residents now own an electric car compared to UK average of 3%. This is because Gusto fit electric car charging points in every home; the community also shares equipment such as lawnmowers stored in a community shed reducing the need for everyone to own everything. The residents are so engaged that they actually man the Show Home personally which gives prospective buyers a genuine view of what life is like in a Gusto home and share the benefits first-hand. A 4-bedroom home at Woodlands Edge costs as little at £1 per day to run, no wonder the residents are always warm!
Steff is seen in the sector as a thought leader and is a highly sought-after speaker on issues such as sustainable housing and business innovation and he lives and breathes his company ethos. He was one of the first people in the UK to drive an electric car and. twenty years ago he, along with brother Jerome, constructed their first green housing development. which went far beyond the requirements of building regulations to build homes that are truly future proof.
Fast forward to 2020 and smarter technology is transforming the way that many of us live. including our homes. Steff believes that the future of house building lies in helping more people to embrace this changing environment and live in affordable. high tech, green homes which are built to the very highest standards, all common place at Gusto.
Tell us more about how you’re building sustainable communities
We’re now taking our commitment to sustainability even further with the creation of our latest development -‘The Future’ in Collingham. This will be the largest housing development in the UK to be heated using geothermal energy and the homes are among the most efficient houses ever built thanks to their hi-spec build quality and the smart technology that’s used throughout.
At Gusto Homes we create housing developments that make and sustain
communities. Rather than building green houses in isolation, we’re building whole neighbourhoods of homes that are economical to run (using passive solar energy or geothermal heat) and which are fitted with the latest efficient and carbon cutting technology.
Not only do people significantly reduce their carbon footprint simply by living in one of these homes. they are designed to encourage and inspire residents to take extra steps with other areas of their lives.
Community living in new developments is not just a vision of the future, it is the reality. For example, at our development in Collingham, we are bulding a retirement village for the over-60s which will house a communal lounge, gardens, allotments, a gym and access to on-site care. All of the retirement properties will be powered using ground source heating systems, cutting bills by 75% and ensuring that the residents are living economically but in a sustainable and enjoyable way.
What can you tell us about this new ‘Home of the Future’ development?
20 years on from the launch of our Millennium Green development at Collingham, where we built homes which reduced home buyers energy bills by 50%. we are back in Collingham rolling out our new ‘Homes of the Future’. At the heart of this 150-home development which includes retirement living, starter homes and spacious passive solar homes, is our vision of the definitive Home of the Future. This amazing and inspiring Show Home has been fitted out to reflect the Gusto vision of living in 2020.
The home combines passive solar design which minimises energy use with technologies which enhance people’s lifestyle. The home will be fitted out with a wide range of environmentally sustainable products, down to the type of cleaning products which people will use if they want to minimise their personal impact on the environment.
The future is happening now, and we are proving that businesses can and should be driving up standards and should only build homes that are future proofed creating -flexible & low carbon living for all ages.
How can these developments help create a sustainable future for the nation?
While we’re at the forefront of green housing, the practices and principles behind our homes could and should become the standard for all home builders. Designing and building smarter homes which enable people to comfortably live greener lives without having to make compromises should be the future for housing in the UK.
The Home of The Future is now open to the public and Steff and his team welcome everyone to see for themselves whether a prospective buyer of such a home, or just interested in The Future, Steff encourages as many people to visit and enjoy The Future in The Present. Sites at Woodlands Edge -just off the A15 at Lincolnshire Showground and The Future at Collingham – near the train station.
Already Lincoln University arranged for a coach to transport 50 students to view the Home of The Future and many more will follow, what a breath of fresh air it is to see the UK’s most progressive builders lead the way on our doorstep.
To find out more visit www.gustohomes.co.uk,
firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 01636 894210