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In this article, we are going to give you some of the top questions to ask a high-performance builder during the interview process. These are questions that they should be able to answer based on the knowledge and experience of building high-performance homes. How do air barriers differ from vapor barriers?What is a Breathable Vapor…Read More
How do we achieve a Prudent Living, Net-Zero home? Here’s our approach: Keep it simple – There are only two questions worth asking. What are the facts? What’s in it for me? Avoid complicating conversations about Net-Zero with useless discussions about micro-mathematics, Scientific R-values vs Builder R-values, charts and graphs that show every cause and…Read More
One way to build a truly Net-Zero house is to design the house in such a way that all heating and cooling and lighting devices are electric. Everything in the house gets its power from the grid. If this is the case, then it’s very easy to measure our consumption of electricity because the electric…Read More
First of all, the process of building a house consumes a huge amount of energy before anyone even moves in and calls it home. Here’s a brief snapshot of what I mean. There’s no such thing as a house that doesn’t consume energy Site & Concrete: First the loggers come and clear out the…Read More
What is a home? Is it just a house that people live in until they don’t live there anymore? How is a house different than a condo when both could be considered homes? What about apartments and second homes … third homes, etc. I always thought there was only one place we call “home” and…Read More
Geothermal heat systems are the most energy efficient, environmentally clean and cost effective space conditioning systems available today declared the EPA in the 1970’s. And it’s still true. Conventional residential and light commercial heating and cooling systems are generally fossil fuel and electricity based. As energy prices fluctuate the demand for Geothermal systems is on…Read More
If you’re thinking about building a home that will comply to net zero construction in Vermont standards, no doubt you’ll have some questions about solar PV systems. Only a few years ago the thought of having solar panels all over your roof was considered a weird or ugly thing to do. Not today. Having solar…Read More
Every year when I dig out the Christmas lights I wonder how many of them are going to work and how long it will take me to find the one light that doesn’t, so I can replace that one light in order to get the entire strand to light up. That is frustrating to say…Read More
Since net zero construction in Vermont and New Hampshire is the latest (and we think greatest) form of residential construction practices, there are some common myths about net zero homes. Let’s dispel these myths: Myth #1) I Need to Compromise on Design This misperception may have drifted over from the auto industry. You may know that…Read More
A couple stopped by my office recently and inquired about building a new house. Since we have been building houses for about 40 years, this was no surprise and it also didn’t surprise me that they didn’t have drawings yet. Their thoughts were pretty vague about what they wanted except for two things. They had…Read More