Factors to Consider Before Building Your Own Green Home
Most new homes built in California are solar-powered. In fact, by 2020, ALL newly built California homes will require solar panels. That’s good news for our Earth. In spite of this mandate, however, homeowners desire solar panels and other features for a green home.
Here are three things to put into consideration if you’re thinking about building your dream green home.
1. Understand the Terms ‘Green Home’ vs. ‘Net-Zero’ Home
- You might think a “green home” and “net-zero” home mean the same thing, but they are significantly different. A “net-zero” home has basically one goal: Reducing the home’s carbon trail to the point where it has zero carbon effect on the environment. This is achieved by generating electricity with bio-fuels and by efficient utilization of energy.
- A “green home” often refers to a home that is built using 100% (or close to) sustainable and environmentally non-toxic building materials and combines energy efficient technology to power the home. Besides using solar panels, that means building with materials such as refurbished wood, using tiles made from recycled supplies or using paints free of volatile organic compounds, often referred to as “VOCs.”.
By understanding these two distinct terms, you can more clearly build your custom green home. A net zero energy home is primarily focused on using no outside energy. A green home is almost fully built with environmentally friendly materials and powered by solar panels. Both homes use less energy and will be less damaging to the environment. If the goal of your family is to build a net-zero home, your architect’s choice of roofing materials, insulation, paint, and other building materials will be explicit to that energy-savings goal and may be less focused on materials used to build your home (such as reused or sustainable options). Make sure you know what your goals are.
2. Design with Energy-Efficiency Codes and Future Market Trends in Mind
Your builder or architect should be familiar with the modern energy efficiency requirements for new construction, nevertheless, make sure you bring the codes up. You always want to be code compliant.
In 2016 there was a 33% increase in the number of net-zero housing units built in the U.S. and Canada. Cities are setting green standards, such as in Austin, Texas, which has a 2050 target to reduce carbon footprint to zero for all new structures and homes.
As previously mentioned, in California, Title 24 regulations will into effect by 2020. Thus, all new California homes will soon be solar-powered. Consequently, if you’re asking your builder to include solar to your home now, you’ll be placing your home in the forefront of the real estate market.
3. Determine Your Budget for Energy Efficient Fixtures and Add-Ons for Your Green Home
Technology is always improving and advancing. There are countless fixtures and add-ons to consider when modernizing your home and making it more energy efficient to become a green home.
The most common technologies that help reduce a home’s energy footprint are:
- Energy-recovery ventilation
- High-efficiency solar panels
- LED lighting and maximized natural lighting
- Heating and cooling pumps
- Lighting sensors, smart thermostats, and other intelligent devices that reduce energy use when you’re at home and when you’re away.
- R-49-rated insulation and other caulking materials
- Energy Star-rated appliances (refrigerators, washers, dishwashers, etc.)
The sun can now power more than just your light bulbs, there are solar powered pool heaters, water heaters, not to mention, electrical car pumps.
While some energy efficient items may be costly up front, the long term savings is typically substantially more. Determine your budget, then have a through conversation with your architect to decide what amenities and features your green home will have.
SunPro Solar is committed to helping you accomplish your green home needs. We have the most aesthetically pleasing solar panels on the market. Our solar panels have an all black surface rather than a grid like surface which is often a architect and green home builders dream.
Building your own green home can be accomplished with careful planning and organized goals. It is always best to consider important factors before you begin construction. Consider the above-mentioned factors for a good start in building your green home.
For your green home solar panel installation, contact SunPro Solar. We offer the most aesthetically pleasing solar panels and expert installation to make sure your design comes out perfectly. SunPro-Solar.com (951) 678-7733