Welcome | | Notification | Logout


Please identify what type of query you have

FirstRate5 feature queries?
The FirstRate5 User Manual contains feature descriptions and other useful information. It is installed with your software and can be found on your computer (typically Start Menu >Program Files>FirstRate5>FirstRate5 Manual) This .pdf document is searchable by keyword.

Modelling queries?
Instruction on how to use the FirstRate5 software is provided through training courses provided by Registered Training Organisations (RTOs). See Accreditation section for details. Please consult your course training manual.

In addition, for advanced modelling situations, we have developed answers to Frequently Asked Questions, see below.

Finally, while software support is not provided by the Assessor Accrediting Organisations (BDAV and ABSA), they may issue additional modelling guidance and practice notes from time to time.

Certificate generation queries?
If you are having difficulty producing a Compliance Certificate using the Certificate Generation Website (www.fr5.com.au), please see the FAQs for this site. 
Regulatory queries?
For questions related to the interpretation of building control regulations (eg, does my building require a thermal performance assessment?) please contact the Victorian Building Authority (VBA) in Victoria or the appropriate building control authority in your state or territory. For users in Victoria the VBA’s Practice Note 2014-55 Residential Sustainability Measures contains useful information.

Scheme queries?
If your query relates to the ‘rules’ of the NatHERS scheme (eg, how should I zone a second living space?) please refer in the first instance to the Technical Notes released by NatHERS.

If your query is not covered here you should contact NatHERS through your Assessor Accrediting Organisation (BDAV or ABSA).

Useful Links

Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS) www.nathers.gov.au
NatHERS Assessor Handbook
NatHERS Heating and Cooling Load Limits

Victorian Building Authority (VBA) www.vba.vic.gov.au
National Construction Code (NCC)
Energy Smart Housing Manual www.sustainability.vic.gov.au
Your Home design guide yourhome.gov.au

Assessor Accrediting Organisation (AAO's)
Design Matters National (​DMN) www.designmatters.org.au (previously BDAV)
Association of Building Sustainability Assessors (ABSA) www.absa.net.au
House Energy Raters Association (HERA) www.hera.asn.au


  • What modelling situations is FirstRate5® most suited to?

  • Specifying windows in FirstRate5

  • Wall construction types

  • How should I model Waffle pod-type slabs?


  • What system requirements are necessary for FirstRate5?

Software Installation

  • What should I do if I get a warning after downloading the FR5 v5.1.11 installer to my machine?


  • Why won't my rating calculate?

  • My file was calculating earlier in this session but has since stopped, why won't it calculate?


Common Workarounds

  • Rating discrepancy between sessions on the same file

  • Unresponsiveness in FR5 v5.1.11c, v5.2.0 (3.13) and v5.2.1 (3.13)

User Tips

  • Where is the software manual located on my computer?

  • Why does the node disappear after I insert a point?

  • How do I insert points so that I can move an area?

  • What is 'Edit area' mode?

  • What is 'Edit zone' mode'?

  • Why can't I insert a skylight?

  • How do I insert a roof window?

  • Why can't I insert a horizontal opening?

  • How do I model a wall with different construction types, one above the other?

  • How do I enter layers of foil insulation or bubble wrap?

  • How do I know if I should enter the insulation values in the ceiling or the roof field?

  • How do I enter insulation in an intermediate floor?

Instructional videos


  • What support does Sustainability Victoria offer?