Green homes have long been discussed as a means to save homeowners energy and money. Technological features such as the remote monitoring of lighting, HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning), and more all contribute to a homeowner minimizing their home’s carbon footprint.
However, while many homebuilders across North America have been taking advantage of such technology in homes, net-zero energy homes, for the most part, have primarily remained in the conceptual phase, with one-off cases of these homes. Many of these projects are also still federally funded, green demonstration projects.
Neeraj Jain, a former CEO of an electronics company, wanted to forget the federal funding and green demonstration projects and completely rethink how a home can be built and operate. This led to Jain commissioning the construction of what he terms Canada’s Greenest Home.
Based on building standards in Canada, the home is designed to generate all the power it requires, collect and filter its own water, and treat all its own waste. The concept was to raise the bar on the technology without losing any aesthetic appeal, says Jain.
The home was designed and built by the Endeavour Centre, www.endeavourcentre.org, Peterborough, Ont., a non-for-profit sustainable building school. Energy modeling using Passive House software, www.passivehouse.us, Urbana, Ill., shows the house will use about 80% less energy than an identical house built to meet the building code.
The outcome of the project is about to be revealed. The home will debut with an open house on May 25, which will coincide with the listing of its availability for sale.
Green building is no longer a far-off concept or fad, more and more homebuilders are looking at green-building technologies as a means to provide value-added services to homebuyers. As this continues to find roots, more homes will be built with energy efficiency in mind.