You might have heard the term ENERGY STAR® in the context of new home construction and assumed the reference was regarding the appliances or lighting. However, did you know that some builders who are focused on developing more energy-efficient building science are building entire homes that carry the ENERGY STAR® seal of approval? These homes are built to standards which well exceed other homes on the market today. Typically, these homes are more than 30% more energy efficient as compared to an average new home.
In the Tri-Cities, there are 17 ENERGY STAR® “Builder Partners” – builders who are committed to building at least one new ENERGY STAR® certified home every 12 months. Devoted Builders is pleased to be one of those few builders and to have built 79 of the 893 ENERGY STAR® certified homes in the Tri-Cities.
According to the ENERGY STAR® website, www.energystar.gov, ENERGY STAR® certified homes built in 2011 are the equivalent of:
- Eliminating emissions from 117 vehicles
- Saving 705,432 lbs of coal
- Planting 193 acres of trees
- Saving the environment 1,383,494 pounds of CO2
So what does it take to become an ENERGY STAR® certified home?
- Specialty Engineering: The engineering of new home systems including heating and cooling, foundation and wall construction undergo scrutiny up front to make the most out of energy efficient advances before the foundation is even poured! ENERGY STAR® building science includes:
- Complete thermal enclosure system – an air-tight envelope!
- Complete heating and cooling system – more comfortable, great air quality, and quiet operation!
- Complete water management system – both indoors and out!
- Energy-efficient lighting and appliances – of course!
- Climate-Specific Recommendations: ENERGY STAR® builder partners work with a ENERGY STAR® Home Energy Rater to determine the specific energy-saving techniques and features that are most effective for each climate. For example, an area whose climate is subject to severe winds (such as ours) would require a different climate-specific energy-saving solution than one that doesn’t have a wind challenge, but extreme temperature extremes.
- Extensive Inspections: To verify ENERGY STAR® homes meet the stringent energy efficiency requirements, Home Energy Raters conduct inspections of the homes which include a blower door test to check for an air-tight seal, duct blaster test to check for duct leakage, and a wide range of other parameters.
If you have been thinking about shrinking your carbon footprint – or just want a home with cleaner air and lower utility bills, an ENERGY STAR® home may be just what you are looking for.
Come and see the almost-complete newest ENERGY STAR® certified home in Mediterranean Villas (and learn how I.C.F. Construction is paving the way in exciting energy advancements) or come and talk with Devoted Builders and Jessica Johnson and Jennifer Cowgill with Referred Real Estate, as we can help you find the perfect lot for your custom-built ENERGY STAR® certified home. So whether you fancy a hip urban contemporary pad or a historic-feeling home in the woods, we are a perfect match for your needs. Please give Jessica a call at (509) 947-2230 or Jennifer at (509) 947-5670 to learn more about your options.