There have been exciting advances in building materials, technology, and techniques in recent years – welcome news for homebuyers who are interested in reducing their environmental impact while saving money each month on energy and utility costs. When it comes to energy efficient home models, we have some exceptional examples to learn and draw inspiration from!
The University of Maryland, for example, designed a home that eschewed the use of fossil fuels. This is an important, and big, step in the right direction. The “WaterShed Solar Decathlon House” boasts many efficient elements. For example, wastewater from the washing machine, shower, and dishwasher is filtered and recycled for further use.
A special harvesting system also collects and filters rainwater so few drops are wasted. A liquid desiccant waterfall is a beautiful touch that also removes humidity from the air, boosting the efficiency of the AC system.
From PV solar panels that produce more electricity than needed (and stores the excess) to high-end systems that monitor everything from temperature to lighting, this house, and others like it, is a testament to the power of green building!
But high-performance homes should also be accessible to average homebuyers. Fortunately, energy efficient home models are available today – and they are up to 50 percent more efficient than other newly constructed homes. That is incredible. And that could be home!
What Makes an Energy Efficient Home Model?
What makes a home “energy efficient.” Several factors:
- A tight thermal envelope. The thermal envelope includes everything that separates outdoor air from indoor air, such as your roof, outer walls, windows, doors, and insulation. We know a lot more about building today than we did decades ago, and we’re putting it into action. A tight thermal envelope prevents heat transfer in the winter and cool air transfer in the summer so you are not throwing your energy dollars away.
- New HVAC. Heating and cooling are the largest expenses homeowners face after their mortgage. And given extreme temperatures, we’re looking at increasing costs. Fortunately, new systems are much more efficient than their predecessors, and you can accomplish your goals of reducing your environmental impact and saving money.
- Energy efficient appliances. Energy Star-rated appliances operate more efficiently and are far less costly to run. They can be more expensive initially, but they will pay you back in terms of usage and longevity.
- Strategic landscaping. As you can tell, we are all hitting two birds with one stone, so to speak. When a feature of your home can help you accomplish more than one goal, we’re in. Landscaping is one of these. Not only will planting trees and shrubs look beautiful and provide a peaceful retreat, but it will also impact your energy costs. These elements naturally reduce the load on your cooling system.
- Small touches that make a big difference. You can also opt to include smart features and technology to make your home more energy efficient. From programmable thermostats and strategic window placement to regularly replaced air filters and ceiling fans, these seemingly minor details can add up to big efficiency and savings.
Our energy efficient home models feature the building industry’s latest techniques and technologies to ensure that your comfort, convenience, and budget are top priorities. Our high-performing homes are up to 75 percent more efficient than existing homes and up to 50 percent more efficient than new builds. This represents incredible opportunities to reduce your environmental impact, your oil/propane/electricity usage, and your monthly bills.
If you are ready to explore the many benefits of energy efficient home models, contact our team today. We want you to come home.