How much more efficient?
We designed the new home we bought from Shea Homes in 1997, where we still live nearly 21 years later. What are the differences in that home verses the new homes being delivered in the metro-Phoenix area today? No, I’m not talking about trends in flooring, counter tops, cabinets and such. I’m talking about more basic differences … like the difference in energy efficiency.
Energy efficiency comes from an envelope of superior insulation, dual-pane low-E windows, low energy-use appliances and HVAC systems, LED lighting, plus design and orientation to minimize west exposure of glass.
And the overall effect can be dramatic. The HERS Index (Home Energy Rating System) for a resale home is typically 130. Homes built to meet current ENERGY STAR requirements can have a HERS Index less than half that number.
A Solar panel system can neutralize the energy consumption of either home, but that system can be significantly smaller and less costly for the ENERGY STAR home.