So now we have a clear equation.....
With that Change in Demand comes change in supply and the status quo. The consumer is no longer interested in the McMansion with the $400,$500,$600,$700/month utility bill or what that bill represents in terms of insufficient building performance, indoor air quality and energy consumption. While it is not just about the dollar amount on the monthly bill anymore it does (naturally) come in to play. It is the same as to say....."if I can do better and it cost less too, duh!!, why should I accept anything less?".
If we can do better, we should do better.
We know that the average existing home has a HERS of 130
We know that the new home built to minimum code standards (the norm) has a HERS rating of 100
We know what the EPA Energy Star Program represents with the new home built to a higher standard and with a HERS rating of 65 to 85. Take a quick look HERE (Back button to return) at the Energy Star impact in Florida alone.
What if we could do better and it be cost effective on the supply side to produce and cost effective on the buy side to purchase.....with an average HERS rating of 50?
.....would we or should we settle for anything less?
I have had the distinct pleasure of assisting Tom Twitchell of Gainesville Florida in his research evaluating his best opportunity for a new home. All the information available today in Alachua County Florida led us to new construction options presented by Tommy Williams and what he was doing with sustainable construction and engineering of various floor plans in Longleaf Village in SW Gainesville Florida.
What we learned was:
- Extremely high energy efficiency = Extremely good construction quality
- Extremely high energy efficiency = Extremely good indoor air quality with absolute climate control (zero allergens and mold)
- Extremely high energy efficiency = Much more quiet living environment
- Extremely high energy efficiency = Significantly lower cost of operation and ownership
- Extremely high energy efficiency = Superb overall comfort and liveability
- Extremely high energy efficiency ≠ Higher additional new construction cost
Tom and his process of making his choice for a new home defines the Current Demand among the Generation X and Echo Boomers (Gen Y) demographic and it represents a paradigm shift in what the U.S. consumer expects in residential building construction today.
And now.....here comes the TRUMP card.
Take a well built energy efficient home and add to it a "net meter" as is now provided by the utility under law:
In the U.S.A., as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, under Sec. 1251, all public electric utilities are now required to make available upon request net metering to their customers.:
‘‘(11) NET METERING.—Each electric utility shall make available upon request net metering service to any electric consumer that the electric utility serves. For purposes of this paragraph, the term ‘net metering service’ means service to an electric consumer under which electric energy generated by that electric consumer from an eligible on-site generating facility and delivered to the local distribution facilities may be used to offset electric energy provided by the electric utility to the electric consumer during the applicable billing period.
Next give the dwelling cost effective engineering and the ability to generate it's own power.
VOILÀ.....enter the "Zero Energy Home", a.k.a. the "Net Zero" home.
the utility bill goodbye.
100% efficiency with a HERS rating of ZERO!!
Stay tuned here as we watch Tom's house going up and all the high performance features being built in to it
Foundation prep, soil analysis has been completed.