Tag Archives: energy efficient homes

Green Atlanta Home Builder Uses Family Farm as Natural Resource

green Atlanta home builderWhen it comes to buying an energy-efficient new home in Atlanta, you want to choose a builder you can trust. Many builders say they can build you a green home, but finding one that actually encompasses earth-friendly qualities in their everyday lives is rare. Brock Built’s dedication to not only building green, but also living green is what makes them stand apart.

In fact, when you purchase a Brock Built home, you can rest assured that all of the natural stone in your new place came from Fox Mountain, which is located on the Brock family farm. The stone is harvested from their property, sifted and carried by dump truck back to Atlanta. Then, their on-site masons hand chisel the stone to make sure every single piece is a unique work of art. Once they are done, the stone is then ready to be used in fireplaces, firepits, home exteriors, landscaping boulders and retaining walls.

In addition to gathering all of their natural stone from the property, the farm is also run completely on solar power. Their solar energy system uses a series of panels to send the energy the home and well require to batteries. And, all of the home’s water is heated through tankless water heaters, which are more efficient in terms of energy and money.

Being committed to an eco-friendly lifestyle is just part of what makes this Atlanta home builder‘s GreenSmart program stand out from others like it. All of their homes are built to high standards for energy efficiency, and they include features such as radiant barrier roofing, spray-on fiberglass insulation, house wrap, high efficiency light bulbs, ENERGY STAR appliances and 14 Seer A/C units.

To learn more about Brock Built’s communities of Atlanta new homes and their GreenSmart program, visit the Brock Built website.

Signature Homes Offers Buyers Energy Saving Amenities

Bay Area Homes at Silver OakTop San Francisco home builder, Signature Homes, offers high-quality building options and the latest in energy saving amenities. From ENERGY STAR® appliances to sustainable flooring, this 2010 Builder of the Year provides the tools needed to promote green living.

Every Bay Area home is made with the aforementioned amenities in addition to high-efficiency toilets and low VOC paints. These homes offer reduced levels of pollution, green house gases and are less dependent on finite energy sources.

Buyers of Signature Homes not only promote health in the environment, they also save money by investing in homes equipped with environmentally conscious elements. These elements improve residents’ quality of life as they save energy and money. Build It Green has come alongside Signature Homes to ensure that every home is constructed with environmentally conscious materials.

The builder constructs new homes in several Bay Area and Sacramento communities with features such as elegant kitchens, ceramic tile flooring, granite slab countertops and Whirlpool appliance packages in addition to their energy saving construction.

Signature Homes has built over 6,000 homes in more than 70 residential communities in the Bay Area and Sacramento region with no end in sight. Thousands of buyers have become part of the Signature Homes family and with new plans on the horizon, there will be many more to come.

Signature Homes has sought to combine the environmentally conscious elements of green building with sophisticated design in each of its unique Bay Area homes. These energy saving amenities provide homeowners with energy renewable homes that are both affordable and luxurious.

For more information about Signature Homes or its communities, visit the website.

The Orchards Group Goes Green To Save Some Green

eco comfort homeThe Orchards Group is going a little greener to help residents save on their energy bills. Though the builder already offers energy-efficient homes for active adults, the group has been receiving numerous requests from residents to help them save more money on energy bills.

“We worked with our suppliers to identify affordable energy-efficient products that will provide a good return on investment over the life of the home,” said Mitch Block, marketing director for The Orchards Group.

Thus the Eco-Comfort home was born! Ground has been broken on this home at its popular Forsyth County community The Orchards of Brannon Oak Farm.

Usually a $10,900 upgrade on the Winston, the smart buyer who purchases this demonstration home at Brannon Oak Farm will pay only $7,900.  Specific upgraded features are available individually or as a package.

The Eco-Comfort Home package includes:

  • A tankless hot water system with a re-circulating pump providing instant hot water.
  • the orchards group, winston model, eco-comfort homeA high-efficiency heating and air conditioning system.
  • A radiant barrier between the roof shingles and the attic which keeps the attic (and house) 20% cooler.
  • Increased insulation for greater hot and cold protection.
  • Water saving Dual flush commodes.

The home features the Winston plan. This floor plan features two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a room that can be a parlor or a third bedroom.  The model has a living and dining room open to the kitchen, a sunroom, a screened porch, a large master bedroom with walk-in closet and true walk-up attic storage. Eco-Comfort features, availability and pricing may vary in other floor plans.

For more information on the Eco-Comfort home, visit The Orchards Group‘s website.

Gerstad to Begin Green Project in Poplar Grove

Green HouseGerstad Builders is bringing in the New Year with an investment in the future and green building by beginning construction on the Villas of Countryside Estates; a new green project located in Poplar Grove, Ill.

These Poplar Grove homes will feature the latest in green building and will come equipped with many energy efficient features such as walls with R-20 insulation cavities and ceilings that will be insulated to an R value of 38. The builder is also considering including electric car hook-ups and tankless water heaters.

The Villas of Countryside Estates will be composed of four different single-family attached units. These green homes will be able to complement every family’s lifestyle: Each maintenance-free, two-unit builder will span from 1,185 to 1,500 square feet and will be priced from the $130,000s to the $150,000s.

These buildings are not Gerstad Builders first project in Poplar Grove. The builder also constructs new single-family homes at the Trails of Dawson Creek located in North Boone County. This community is composed of ranch, two-story and tri-level floorplans priced from $156,490 to $258,990. Each home sits on a partial basement with interiors that feature GE appliances, popular Colonist doors and trim and furniture quality cabinetry.

For more information, visit the Gerstad Builders website or call 815-385-4495.

Zero Net Energy Home — A Look into Future Homes?

The future could be here, with the first ever zero net energy home which opened last Tuesday, Oct. 26 in Penn., in the Ohio Township area, for builders and real estate professionals to tour.

The builder, S & A Homes based out of Penn. and West Va., along with IBACOS, the Department of Energy, and other home builders were ecstatic to introduce what could become standard for homes as technology progresses.

This zero net energy home will be a continuous research project for S & A Homes and especially IBACOS, of Pittsburgh,  Penn., a think-tank leading builders in quality and energy efficiency. The project goal is to see how the average family can conserve energy living in a home that is made for energy efficiency entirely.

The only home of its kind so far, pricing and design options haven’t been discussed at length yet, because the home’s still being carefully analyzed for effectiveness, and judged on how its design will fit into the home market in general.

Innovative new technologies and designs have been worked into every aspect of the zero net energy home, with “green” features like:

  • A looping horizontal heat pump system, a few feet beneath the home, using geothermal energy (the home is additionally installed with a traditional well system also, to compare the efficiency of each)
  • R-40 insulation, installed within 2×8 exterior walls with staggered 2×4 construction, to keep more heat inside in the cold months, and outside in the hot months
  • All LED and CFL lighting, on image sensors to minimize electricity usage

After a ribbon-cutting ceremony this month, a lucky family of four will move into the model home, for analysis of their energy usage and home habits. Over the next two years, IBACOS will be able to see how things are used, how energy efficient the home can be, and what works best or needs to be improved with the design of the home.

This way when zero net energy homes become more common, they can determine cost compared to value of these homes, to make them as affordable and  beneficial as possible. To see more information about the first zero net energy home, visit the S & A Homes website.

Benefits of Buying an Energy Star Home

When it comes to buying a house and having to think about mortgages, locations and school districts, the stress level seems to increase. With an estimated 16% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions being generated from the energy used in houses nationwide to contribute to the smog, acid rain and global warming, making sure your house minimizes environmental harm is something else to consider. One way to make sure your house doesn’t contribute to the pollution is by purchasing an Energy Star labeled house.

If you’re looking at buying a new house, these government approved homes are a beneficial investment. For one, Energy Star protects the environment from the energy in our homes that generates a great deal of air pollution. Additional perks for Energy Star homeowners include confidence in the product that is easily identified as energy efficient. Owners of an Energy Star home save money over time. Different than a standard home, these cost substantially less for energy, heating, cooling, and water-heating. There is an estimated $200-$400 in savings every year. Let’s do the math–if you live in the house for an average of 7-8 years, this adds up to thousands of dollars saved on utilities.

Better performance is also a benefit of buying an energy star home. With energy-efficient improvements, there is better protection against weather, pollution and noise. An energy-efficient home ensures consistent temperatures between and across rooms, improved indoor air quality and greater durability.

Essentially, these homes are smart investments and will increase in value by the time you are ready to sell. More than 8,500 home builders have partnered with the EPA to create more than 1 million Energy Star qualified homes. While the price tag may seem to be more expensive, Energy Star homes save money–future expenses can go towards redecorating instead of utilities.

Green Home Builder Speaks Out About Energy-Efficient Mandates

Recently, St. Louis green builder Matt Belcher cautioned Congress on the danger of one-size-fits-all proposals for home construction. Belcher’s argument is that policies that encourage rather than mandate energy savings are the most meaningful at stimulating greater demand for energy-efficient homes.

“The ability of aggressive building code mandates to achieve massive energy and greenhouse gas emissions savings is incredibly limited. The wide-ranging geographic differences in state and local climates create specific building needs, making national benchmarks almost untenable,” he said.

Further, “significant increases in costs for efficiency upgrades and the additional increase in home price to accommodate them has the potential to harm the part of the market with the least flexibility to react to price constraints: the marginal first-time home buyer,” Belcher said. “NAHB does not support the assertion that a broad public policy objective should be achieved on the backs of a relatively narrow segment of the market with limited resources.” Continue reading