New Town Builders, which has been building energy efficient homes in the Denver area for the past 10 years, is raising the green-building bar with its first net-zero energy home.
New Town has broken ground on the net-zero home in Stapleton.
When completion in early November, the net-zero home will be so well insulated and so efficient in its use of energy, the family that buys it may find they will average “no payment due” on their monthly utility bill. New Town Builders will make the net-zero capability a regular add-on feature for all its single-family homes, if buyers request it.
New Town is not the only production builder in the Denver area that is breaking new green ground. Oakwood Homes recently completed its first net-zero home in Green Valley Ranch.
“Years ago, we believed we could set the standard in energy efficiency for new homes, and this net-zero project is further confirmation of our success,” said Gene Myers, chief executive officer of New Town Builders. “While we have consistently averaged single-family Home Energy Rating System (HERS) scores in the 50s, we are not content to rest there; and we are excited to be approaching the day in which our customers will save hundreds of dollars a month on their energy bills.”
HERS goal: Zero
A home that is minimally compliant with Denver’s current building code would receive a HERS score of 100, and a home with 30 percent better energy efficiency, for example, would receive a score of 70. New Town builders’ NZE home thus would receive a “perfect” score of zero.
New Town Builders’ HERS’ score of 59 during the past three years and recent scores in the low to mid 40’s puts the company at the top of Denver home builders, according to the company. In the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star measurement, lower scores are better, and New Town Builders’ closest competitors typically average scores for their single-family homes in the 70s.
Perhaps the best news on this 2,204-square-foot house, which will be priced in the $400,000s, is that New Town Builders has designed it with affordability in mind. The features that bring the house to NZE status add only $28,000 to the cost of the house, including the solar power system. At that rate, New Town Builders estimates that the NZE features would pay for themselves after about eight years.
New Town Builders’ home at 8146 E. 35th Ave. will collect energy via solar panels, retain heat in the winter and cool air in the summer with “super” insulation, and use all energy most sparingly.
The recipe for the net-zero home starts with the design. While typical “energy efficient” homes have thick exterior walls with 2×6 studs, New Town Builders has designed an innovative concept of “double walls,” using 2×4 studs and half-inch thermal gap between them. The staggered 24-inch space between the studs provides even greater insulation than normally achieved with a more traditional system.
Other energy efficiencies in the New Town Builders NZE home:
- Four-inch increase in the heel height of the roof’s trusses (allowing more space for insulation
- Blown fiberglass insulation in all exterior walls
- Additional insulation at the foundation wall system
- Hybrid tankless water heater
- Solar power system with 8-9.5 kilowatt panels
- Whole-house ventilation system
- EnergyStar appliances
- All lighting fixtures feature compact fluorescent bulbs
To learn about New Town Builders, please visit this link.
To see what else is for sale in Stapleton, please visit this COhomefinder.com link.< class="related_post_title">Related Posts:>