FR5 Software

FirstRate5® house energy rating software

FirstRate5® is an easy-to-use interactive tool with a graphic user interface that enables designers and thermal performance assessors to generate energy ratings for a home by tracing over floor plans. The software integrates the AccuRate calculation engine to estimate the annual heating and cooling energy and can be used to rate an existing design or as an interactive tool to optimise the design beyond compliance.

Latest news

Release of FR5 Whole of Home (v1.0.1) & NatHERS Whole of Home Certificates

by Sustainability Victoria Energy Software Team | Apr 24, 2024

Sustainability Victoria (SV) is pleased to announce that the FirstRate5 website has been upgraded and FirstRate5 Whole of Home (v1.0.1) has been released.

Users can now generate NCC 2022 NatHERS Whole of Home (WoH) Certificates on the FR5 website. SV has created a training video explaining the WoH certificate generation process and the FirstRate5 Whole of Home tool user manual has also been updated. 

The process for generating NatHERS WoH Certificates is very simple. When a WoH assessment has been finalised in the WoH tool, simply click the button ‘Send assessment to finalise my certificate’ located on the project Summary page. This will send the WoH assessment information to the FR5 website and a NatHERS WoH Certificate will be automatically generated. Users will then follow the usual process to purchase the final certificates.

Users should note that currently the fastest way to bulk import files into the WoH tool is to click the button ‘Import project file’ on the All Projects page. 

SV has created a checklist that assessors can use with their clients to gather the required information for a WoH assessment. A FR5 WoH tool demonstration video is also available. 

Update of the FR5 website 

SV has updated the FR5 website user interface to make the new certificate generation process simpler and more streamline. Our new website design and improved navigation will help you more easily find the information you need and simplify the WoH assessment process and certificate generation.

Key changes are as follows:

  • On the individual Job page, new tabs have been added to display information about WoH assessments and certificate replacement history.
  • On the new WoH tab, users can create a WoH assessment, see the status of WoH assessments linked to FR5 project record and click through to specific WoH assessments.
  • The navigation menu has moved to the left-hand side and a link to the FirstRate5 Whole of Home tool has been added.
  • On the Jobs page, actions that can be applied to multiple projects can now be found under the ‘Bulk actions’ dropdown.

Upcoming updates to the FirstRate5 Whole of Home Tool

SV is working on a number of enhancements to the improve the WoH assessment workflow. These will include reduced file import time and the ability to trigger the import of multiple FR5 project files into the WoH Tool from the FR5 website.

We will email users when we have released these enhancements.

List of known limitations and software bugs for FR5 WoH (v1.0.1)

Users should be aware that FR5 WoH (v1.0.1) contains a number of known limitations and software bugs that we are currently working to resolve.

Please refer to the table below. The list will be updated if further issues are reported to SV. If you encounter additional bugs please report these to the FirstRate5 help desk.


Limitation Description
Hot water solar PV diverter system cannot be modelled. Hot water solar PV diverter systems cannot be model. The hot water module will be updated in the future to include this type of water heater.

In the meantime, the NatHERS Administrator has informed SV that users should use the default water heater specified in the NatHERS Technical Note if a hot water solar PV diverter system is specified in design documentation.

Software bugs

Bug Description
‘Duplicate Project’ functionality not working as expected The ‘Duplicate Project’ functionality has been temporarily removed from the tool while we resolve some software bugs.
Formatting issues with downloadable PDF report. The PDF report that can be downloaded for an assessment can have formatting issues (e.g. information breaking over two pages) depending upon the number of appliances specified.
‘Import project files’ list does not update after initial login. The list of available projects shown in the ‘Import project files’ window does not update after the initial login. This means that this list is not updated if a user subsequently uploads more projects to their linked FirstRate5 account after the initial login.

The list can be refreshed by logging out of the tool and then logging back in.
Project results not updating when changes are made to selections. SV is aware of several instances where a project fails to load correctly, and this prevents the project from calculating. When this situation occurs, the assessment results fail to update when changes are made to the appliance selections.

SV is in the process of determining the root cause of this issue. If you come across this bug please report it to the FirstRate5 help desk.
Project status fails to update.

Occasionally the status of projects does not display correctly in the tool.
A project can get stuck in the ‘Importing’ status on the ‘All Projects’ page. This can occur more frequently if a user is importing multiple projects in a single action.

In this situation, even though the status is shown as ‘Importing’, the project can still be edited. If a user clicks through and edits the project, when they exit the project the status will update to the correct status on the 'All Projects' page.

Whole of Home Performance Rating calculated without required minimum information being entered. Currently the tool will calculate a Whole of Home Performance Rating for an assessment even when the required minimum information specified in the NatHERS Technical Note has not been entered.
Users must ensure that all required information has been entered before issuing a NatHERS Whole of Home Certificate.


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