A 2022 Pew Research survey found that thanks to the growing demand for global energy and increased carbon dioxide emissions, 69% of Americans believe the US should take the necessary steps to become carbon neutral by the year 2050. Some are taking big steps in their own lives to leave a smaller footprint, and some believe that starts with investing in energy efficient homes. Why should you consider energy efficient home building over other new construction homes? What even means a home is energy efficient? This quick guide will help you see why people are looking to build an energy efficient home in Florida, and learn more about the real benefits it can provide for you.
What Makes an Energy Efficient Home?
Energy efficient homes aren’t just those that incorporate more efficient appliances and better windows. While they certainly do that, the shift in thinking toward something different begins well before the slab for the home is ever even poured. From day one, the architect here positions the home differently on the property. The goal is maximum passive solar gain during the cooler months and avoiding the excess Florida heat during the summer months, and properly orienting the home on the lot is the key to exactly that. Homes are oriented so that they get the sun in all the right spots. More than that, though, builders work to ensure deciduous trees are on both the east and west sides of the home to help provide a cooler space for the home during the hot summer months. Once those trees shed their leaves, the home is able to take advantage of passive heat from the sun in the cooler winter months.
After considering the lot itself, architects begin designing a home that uses every inch of its space well. Smaller homes are eco-friendly homes, so these homes take advantage of spaces, making them flexible enough to grow and change with the needs of a homeowner. The rooms are even oriented differently in these homes. Living spaces and dining rooms typically face south so they get lots of natural light each day. The kitchen and bedrooms are usually facing east so they can catch the morning sun but experience far less sun during the afternoon. Service spaces like the garage, laundry, and bathroom are usually designed to face north, as natural lighting doesn’t have to be a priority in these areas.
Design features of energy efficient homes don’t stop there, though. The home’s thermal envelope is designed a bit differently too. A thermal envelope is simply what stands between the home and the outside world, and energy efficient homes work a lot on this practice. They tend to be better insulated than they even need to be, using more than the minimum to help stop heat exchange between the inside and outside of a home. They also utilize high thermal mass materials to help absorb and store heat energy. The barriers used in these homes prevent both air and moisture from accumulating inside, which provides a better overall indoor air quality. Additionally, they make use of cool roofing materials, great windows and doors, and even options like solar photovoltaic panels to help ensure the home creates as much energy as it uses.
Inside each energy efficient home, you’ll find a number of other features like Energy Star rated appliances, HVAC systems with a higher rate of efficiency, and smart features that make it easy to save as much energy as possible.
The Benefits of Living in an Energy Efficient Home
Why do all of these features matter? There are a number of reasons you may want to consider living in an energy efficient home. Maybe one of the biggest reasons is the fact that you’ll realize extensive cost savings. You’re using fewer resources, like electricity and gas, and you’re retaining the energy you do require better because your home is tightly sealed. Your appliances work more effectively too. All of that adds up to something simple – cutting your utility bills at least in half. These homes offer another financial advantage as well – a higher resale value. As more people want energy efficient homes, the resale value of existing energy efficient homes is likely to increase dramatically.
Besides the cost savings you’ll realize, you’re also likely to get a bit of peace of mind. Global greenhouse emissions are going up, and going with an energy efficient home means you get the chance to help protect the planet in a way other homes simply can’t.
Making the Choice
If you want to build an energy efficient home in Florida, we can help. Synergy Homes is a leader in energy efficient home building throughout South Florida, and with a number of modern designs that are not only stunning but are also as energy efficient as possible in the world of home building today, you simply won’t find a better option. Contact us today to learn more.