March 18, 2020

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

Zero energy homes are poised to go mainstream. Large builders have the scale necessary to launch the market into this new territory. Homebuyers save and builders profit.

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March 14, 2020

Make Hot Water the Modern Energy Efficient Way

Heat pump water heaters have been available for several years and are gradually gaining acceptance in new construction as well as in the replacement market. Here is guidance for the best application of this technology with an emphasis on colder climates.

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February 15, 2020

Wall Upgrades for Deep Energy Retrofits

Upgrading the energy performance of walls in an existing home is the most challenging aspect of a deep energy retrofit. One of these eight options will work for just about any zero energy renovation.

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January 16, 2020

The Challenges and Opportunities of Exterior Air Sealing

Good news! You can choose from more methods than ever before to reach the high levels of air tightness needed for zero energy construction. Many builders find it less expensive to seal the exterior structural sheathing. Here are six effective methods to consider.

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November 14, 2019

Planning Your Zero Energy Ready Home

Although the price of solar panels has plunged in recent years, they are still the most expensive element of a zero energy home. It’s okay to defer installing panels until the time is right. Here’s how to plan your zero energy ready home so it’s ready for solar when you are.

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March 23, 2019

Zero Energy Homes – A Financial Win for Homeowners

In Part One of this two-part series we show the real financial returns for zero energy homeowners. — “A penny saved is a penny earned,” according to Benjamin Franklin. Let’s start thinking about energy improvements as investments that bring a financial return. Here are four ways to evaluate the financial performance of zero energy homes. They all demonstrate that zero energy homeowners benefit financially, making zero a wise investment.

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March 15, 2019

Zero Energy Homes: Tunneling Through the Electrification Cost Barrier in Cold Climates

The move away from fossil fuels requires that buildings and vehicles be powered by electricity from renewable sources, such as wind, solar, etc. All-electric homes in cold climates present a challenge for comfort and cost, but those barriers have fallen to recent developments in design and technology - making all-electric homes desirable even in cold climates.

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February 15, 2019

My Zero Energy Pool is a Great Investment!

Swimming pools are great fun, but they have high running costs and a high carbon footprint. David Green cut both. Now his pool running cost is zero and so is its carbon footprint.

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January 20, 2019

Zero Energy Proves Profitable in Vacation Rental

For most people, developing a vacation rental would be about profit. For these two Washington state couples, it was about much more. Oh, and the profit is there too.

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January 17, 2019

How Important is HERS to Appraised Value?

Every buyer wants an energy-efficient home, but there are so many factors to consider that many buyers become overwhelmed. Did you know that the energy performance of any home can be expressed in one simple-to-understand number? Here it is.

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January 16, 2019

Mandalay Homes: Zero Energy Grid-Integrated Neighborhoods that Solve the “Duck Curve”

To stay competitive, a production builder must find a good balance between cost, price, and profit. Here’s the story of one builder who has successfully added high-performance, clean energy features to their standard offering. More importantly this builder has developed an elegant solution to the challenge of solar-powered homes producing energy when it is not needed by the grid.

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November 14, 2018

Zero-Energy Homes Are Ready for Mainstream Markets

A new study shows that the cost of zero energy homes is very close to that of homes built to code. Best of all, costs are dropping and the trend is expected to continue.

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