Home Energy Savings Successes: PACE Loans Have Low Delinquency Rates

There is little doubt that most energy efficiency improvements, including solar panels, are good long-term investments and that the demand for them is growing. However, the initial cost of installing improvements has proven to be a stubborn obstacle. One way that local governments have addressed this obstacle is through Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loans. […]

PACE Loans Hurdle the “First Cost Barrier” to Zero Energy Homes

Everyone seems to agree. Builders, brokers, appraisers, and advocates of all kinds will tell you that we have the technology for zero energy buildings: insulation, air tightness, energy efficient windows, and a variety of other energy saving mechanical equipment. All are off-the-shelf products, right down to the solar electric panels. So what’s holding us back […]

Production Builders, It’s Time to Sell Zero Energy Homes 

Production builders are uniquely positioned to identify and fulfill the needs of mass market home buyers. Most buyers assume that a new home is more comfortable, healthier, and more durable than an existing home, including the one they are leaving behind. Zero energy homes check all these boxes. Unfortunately, there is one misconception that prevents […]

How to Scale Home Energy Financing Products

For homeowners making a decision about how to finance a home purchase, options are relatively consistent regardless of where you live. Mortgages rates and terms are comparable across markets and more dependent on your own personal preferences than location—making a potential home buyer’s financing decision much more straightforward. But decisions about how to finance a […]

The Buying Power of Efficiency

The average home in the U.S. spends $2,200 on energy each year. That’s $183/month. Rather than spending this money on energy purchases, the smart approach is to invest it in greater energy efficiency. If you’re building a new home, it’s possible to reduce your energy purchases to zero with the buying power gained from that […]

Three Ways Energy Ratings Support Efficiency

Builders often say that they want to build the best possible home for consumers. In many locations, they now have a new way to display that quality. Like automobile stickers, home energy ratings give homebuyers a “miles per gallon” type of number which they can use to compare home energy performance. Builders, too, often use […]

Zero Energy Activism in a Time of Climate Change Denial

We never recognize the good ol’ days until they’re gone. In recent years, America has begun the transition toward a zero energy society. In 2015, almost 10% of new residential housing units were certified under the ENERGY STAR Homes program. Many businesses and  organizations have made it their goal to include making all new homes […]

The Many Benefits of All-Electric Design

The many benefits of building all-electric include lower construction costs, lower carbon emissions, improved public safety, improved indoor health, higher efficiency, lower utility bills when paired with PV panels, a simplified building process and greater homeowner satisfaction. With all these benefits, designers and builders should move to all-electric homes. Lower Construction Costs A study prepared […]

Zero Net Energy Buildings with Zero Net Added Cost

Would you consider making your next home or building project a zero energy project? If the net added cost to you was also zero, would you be more interested? Most people would. It’s possible to have the added costs rolled into a mortgage or long-term loan. The monthly payments are then covered by the resulting […]

Everybody Wins with Zero Energy Homes!

In addition to the superior monetary returns to homeowners that we detailed in Part One, Zero Energy Homes – A Financial Win For Homeowners, zero energy homes offer a wide variety of other benefits not available to owners of homes built to code. And almost everyone else involved in zero energy homes – from builders […]

Improving Efficiency of Existing Commercial Buildings Cost Effectively

Many developers cite first cost as a barrier to pursuing net zero energy in their new and existing building projects. But one leading developer in Colorado is flipping the script on this assumption, showing that prioritizing energy performance can open up new cash flows, as opposed to draining existing ones. John Madden Company (JMC) just […]

Don’t Repair, Replace! Bring Zero Energy Homes to Those Who Need them Most

Part I of our series on energy poverty discussed addressing the root causes of the issue rather than the current band-aid solution. While current programs intended to pay utility bills or weatherize older homes certainly  helps as a temporary aid to this widespread problem, a more systematic approach would be better. There are many homes […]