Global South | Home:LiFE prototype online housing choice tool
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Home:LiFE prototype online housing choice tool

Home:LIFE is a prototype web-based tool that provides detailed, personalised assessments of potential housing choices, which received the Australia Award for Urban Design in 2015.

It assesses the lifestyle, financial and sustainability aspects of a dwelling and its location, to influence housing choices towards more liveable and affordable options and more sustainable urban outcomes.

The economic, social and health impacts of poorly planned development in dispersed cities and poorly designed apartments in urban areas are increasingly prevalent.

Our research has identified the foundations of walkable, diverse and compact urban development, but also the need to inform the public of the ongoing implications of their housing choices, in order to encourage more sustainable choices.

With RMIT University and SJB Urban we developed a web-based tool to assist households to make suitable, sustainable and cost-effective housing choices, based on a personalised assessment of affordability and liveability. The prototype tool is available for testing and user feedback at:

The tool is envisaged as a city-shaping initiative, which informs users of the long-term implications of their housing choices, affecting lifestyle, access, health and financial outcomes. The tool encourages households to pursue more compact, efficient and well-located/well-serviced housing, thereby shaping housing demand towards a more serviceable, sociable and sustainable city.

Currently in beta/prototype form, the tool provides limited yet useable assessment functionality. It is set up to make multiple assessments of a selected location and dwelling to provide consolidated outcomes about Getting Around, Enjoying Life, Being Green, Being Healthy and Saving Money, for the user’s particular household. The results are presented graphically, and evolve as the user inputs further information about the household, dwelling and location. Further information is provided in the form of risks, benefits and recommendations.

The software is configured to allow ongoing expansion of the measures.

With significant industry interest in the tool, we are now validating, testing and developing the prototype’s functionality and reach.