Launch Slideshow

Name: Builder Concept Home 2011 / KB Home GreenHouse: An Idea Home Created with Martha Stewart, Windermere, Fla.Size: 2,667 square feetCost: About $140 per square footCompleted: October 2010Certifications: LEED-Platinum, Environments for Living Certified Green, WaterSense, Energy Star HERS rating: 0Builder and Architect: KB Home, Los AngelesInteriors and Merchandising: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, New York City

2011 Builder Concept Home: Green Details & Products

2011 Builder Concept Home: Green Details & Products

  • Name: Builder Concept Home 2011 / KB Home GreenHouse: An Idea Home Created with Martha Stewart, Windermere, Fla.Size: 2,667 square feetCost: About $140 per square footCompleted: October 2010Certifications: LEED-Platinum, Environments for Living Certified Green, WaterSense, Energy Star HERS rating: 0Builder and Architect: KB Home, Los AngelesInteriors and Merchandising: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, New York City

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    Name: Builder Concept Home 2011 / KB Home GreenHouse: An Idea Home Created with Martha Stewart, Windermere, Fla.Size: 2,667 square feetCost: About $140 per square footCompleted: October 2010Certifications: LEED-Platinum, Environments for Living Certified Green, WaterSense, Energy Star HERS rating: 0Builder and Architect: KB Home, Los AngelesInteriors and Merchandising: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, New York City

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    James F. Wilson

    Name: Builder Concept Home 2011 / KB Home GreenHouse: An Idea Home Created with Martha Stewart, Windermere, Fla.
    Size: 2,667 square feet
    Cost: About $140 per square foot
    Completed: October 2010
    Certifications: LEED-Platinum, Environments for Living Certified Green, WaterSense, Energy Star
    HERS rating: 0
    Builder and Architect: KB Home, Los Angeles
    Interiors and Merchandising: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, New York City

  • The Utility Monitor from Verve Living Systems tracks electrical, propane/gas, and water usage and costs in real time via a Web-based dashboard on a PC or smart phone. Based on user-loaded local utility rates and budget goals for the month, and integrating solar electric/power fed back into the system, the monitor tracks each utility by the day, week, month, and year. 877.874.8774. www.vervelivingsystems.com.

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    The Utility Monitor from Verve Living Systems tracks electrical, propane/gas, and water usage and costs in real time via a Web-based dashboard on a PC or smart phone. Based on user-loaded local utility rates and budget goals for the month, and integrating solar electric/power fed back into the system, the monitor tracks each utility by the day, week, month, and year. 877.874.8774. www.vervelivingsystems.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Enegy Monitoring
    The Utility Monitor from Verve Living Systems tracks electrical, propane/gas, and water usage and costs in real time via a Web-based dashboard on a PC or smart phone. Based on user-loaded local utility rates and budget goals for the month, and integrating solar electric/power fed back into the system, the monitor tracks each utility by the day, week, month, and year. 877.874.8774. www.vervelivingsystems.com.

  • The ERV90HCS ERV from Broan recovers and transfers up to 70% of waste heat to the incoming fresh air to reduce the heating energy load; it also offers built-in dehumidification and a controlled level of whole-house ventilation to promote good indoor air quality and an optimum air exchange rate. The unit is HVI-certified. 800.558.1711. www.broan.com.

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    The ERV90HCS ERV from Broan recovers and transfers up to 70% of waste heat to the incoming fresh air to reduce the heating energy load; it also offers built-in dehumidification and a controlled level of whole-house ventilation to promote good indoor air quality and an optimum air exchange rate. The unit is HVI-certified. 800.558.1711. www.broan.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Energy Recovery Ventilator
    The ERV90HCS ERV from Broan recovers and transfers up to 70% of waste heat to the incoming fresh air to reduce the heating energy load; it also offers built-in dehumidification and a controlled level of whole-house ventilation to promote good indoor air quality and an optimum air exchange rate. The unit is HVI-certified. 800.558.1711. www.broan.com.

  • SURFACESSolid-surface materials from DuPont Building Innovations deliver elegant, non-porous, and scratch/stain-resistant surfaces in a variety of applications. The Corian Terra Collection surfaces contain up to 13 o/o pre-consumer recycled content, while the quartz-based Zodiaq Terra collection colors have up to 25 o/o recycled-glass content and are certified by Greenguard for low-VOC emissions. 877.229.3935. www.builder.dupont.com. COMPOST BINSet within the kitchen island counter, the Solon compost system from Blanco provides a convenient and durable container for organic waste collection. Made from recycled-content stainless steel, the dishwasher-safe, 1.5-gallon container features a near-flush lid with a hygienic seal to contain odors. 800.451.5782. www.blancoamerica.com.

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    SURFACESSolid-surface materials from DuPont Building Innovations deliver elegant, non-porous, and scratch/stain-resistant surfaces in a variety of applications. The Corian Terra Collection surfaces contain up to 13 o/o pre-consumer recycled content, while the quartz-based Zodiaq Terra collection colors have up to 25 o/o recycled-glass content and are certified by Greenguard for low-VOC emissions. 877.229.3935. www.builder.dupont.com. COMPOST BINSet within the kitchen island counter, the Solon compost system from Blanco provides a convenient and durable container for organic waste collection. Made from recycled-content stainless steel, the dishwasher-safe, 1.5-gallon container features a near-flush lid with a hygienic seal to contain odors. 800.451.5782. www.blancoamerica.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Surfaces
    Solid-surface materials from DuPont Building Innovations deliver elegant, non-porous, and scratch/stain-resistant surfaces in a variety of applications. The Corian Terra Collection surfaces contain up to 13% pre-consumer recycled content, while the quartz-based Zodiaq Terra collection colors have up to 25% recycled-glass content and are certified by Greenguard for low-VOC emissions. 877.229.3935. www.builder.dupont.com.

    Compost Bin
    Set within the kitchen island counter, the Solon compost system from Blanco provides a convenient and durable container for organic waste collection. Made from recycled-content stainless steel, the dishwasher-safe, 1.5-gallon container features a near-flush lid with a hygienic seal to contain odors. 800.451.5782. www.blancoamerica.com.

  • PHOTOVOLTAICSThe rooftop array, featured on both the south- and east-facing roof surfaces, is an integrated system of tile-shaped panels from SunPower Corp. Sans grid lines, the black SunTile panels integrate easily with the flat concrete roof tiles for a near-seamless look while their advanced solar cells deliver up to 50% more energy than conventional cells, says the maker, converting up to 23% of available sunlight into electricity. 800.786.7693. www.sunpowercorp.com/homebuilders. SOLAR THERMALA pair of roof-integrated solar thermal collectors connects to an 80-gallon storage tank with built-in electrical resistance backup, pumping solar-heated fluid through a closed loop to heat the domestic water supply. The complete, turnkey system from Velux is Energy Star-qualified and certified by the Solar Rating & Certification Corp. 800.888.3589. www.veluxusa.com. RAINWATER HARVESTINGModular, 50-gallon cisterns from Rainwater HOG tie into the homes gutter system and feature a bottom-mounted hose spout to irrigate 140 square feet of landscape. The units are designed to withstand temperature extremes and are made with FDA-approved potable plastic that does not off-gas. The units can be placed vertically (shown) or horizontally and ganged to achieve a desired capacity. 888.700.1096. www.rainwaterhog.com.

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    PHOTOVOLTAICSThe rooftop array, featured on both the south- and east-facing roof surfaces, is an integrated system of tile-shaped panels from SunPower Corp. Sans grid lines, the black SunTile panels integrate easily with the flat concrete roof tiles for a near-seamless look while their advanced solar cells deliver up to 50% more energy than conventional cells, says the maker, converting up to 23% of available sunlight into electricity. 800.786.7693. www.sunpowercorp.com/homebuilders. SOLAR THERMALA pair of roof-integrated solar thermal collectors connects to an 80-gallon storage tank with built-in electrical resistance backup, pumping solar-heated fluid through a closed loop to heat the domestic water supply. The complete, turnkey system from Velux is Energy Star-qualified and certified by the Solar Rating & Certification Corp. 800.888.3589. www.veluxusa.com. RAINWATER HARVESTINGModular, 50-gallon cisterns from Rainwater HOG tie into the homes gutter system and feature a bottom-mounted hose spout to irrigate 140 square feet of landscape. The units are designed to withstand temperature extremes and are made with FDA-approved potable plastic that does not off-gas. The units can be placed vertically (shown) or horizontally and ganged to achieve a desired capacity. 888.700.1096. www.rainwaterhog.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Photovoltaics
    The rooftop array, featured on both the south- and east-facing roof surfaces, is an integrated system of tile-shaped panels from SunPower Corp. Sans grid lines, the black SunTile panels integrate easily with the flat concrete roof tiles for a near-seamless look while their advanced solar cells deliver up to 50% more energy than conventional cells, says the maker, converting up to 23% of available sunlight into electricity. 800.786.7693. www.sunpowercorp.com/homebuilders.

    SolarThermal
    A pair of roof-integrated solar thermal collectors connects to an 80-gallon storage tank with built-in electrical resistance backup, pumping solar-heated fluid through a closed loop to heat the domestic water supply. The complete, turnkey system from Velux is Energy Star-qualified and certified by the Solar Rating & Certification Corp. 800.888.3589. www.veluxusa.com.  

    Rainwater Harvesting 
    Modular, 50-gallon cisterns from Rainwater HOG tie into the homes gutter system and feature a bottom-mounted hose spout to irrigate 140 square feet of landscape. The units are designed to withstand temperature extremes and are made with FDA-approved potable plastic that does not off-gas. The units can be placed vertically (shown) or horizontally and ganged to achieve a desired capacity. 888.700.1096. www.rainwaterhog.com.

  • The D'mand Hot Water Delivery System from Uponor, installed within the company's AquaPEX tubing and manifold plumbing delivery system, uses a small pump at the kitchen sink and within both bathrooms to circulate hot water to the taps via a motion sensor or a button, saving water and reducing water-heating energy demand by up to 15 o/o. 800.321.4739. www.uponorpro.com.

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    The D'mand Hot Water Delivery System from Uponor, installed within the company's AquaPEX tubing and manifold plumbing delivery system, uses a small pump at the kitchen sink and within both bathrooms to circulate hot water to the taps via a motion sensor or a button, saving water and reducing water-heating energy demand by up to 15 o/o. 800.321.4739. www.uponorpro.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Hot Water Recirculation
    The D'mand Hot Water Delivery System from Uponor, installed within the company's AquaPEX tubing and manifold plumbing delivery system, uses a small pump at the kitchen sink and within both bathrooms to circulate hot water to the taps via a motion sensor or a button, saving water and reducing water-heating energy demand by up to 15 o/o. 800.321.4739. www.uponorpro.com.

  • The Siemens EVSE charger has a compact design and uses a simple on/off indicator with no complex wiring or configuration requirements. The key components are safely contained within a durable enclosure and rated for 208- or 240-volt needs. The charging station is UL listed and also complies with SAE standard J1772, the benchmark for electrical connectors for electric vehicles. 800.964.4114. www.usa.siemens.com/residential.

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    The Siemens EVSE charger has a compact design and uses a simple on/off indicator with no complex wiring or configuration requirements. The key components are safely contained within a durable enclosure and rated for 208- or 240-volt needs. The charging station is UL listed and also complies with SAE standard J1772, the benchmark for electrical connectors for electric vehicles. 800.964.4114. www.usa.siemens.com/residential.

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    James F. Wilson

    Electric Car Charger
    The Siemens EVSE charger has a compact design and uses a simple on/off indicator with no complex wiring or configuration requirements. The key components are safely contained within a durable enclosure and rated for 208- or 240-volt needs. The charging station is UL listed and also complies with SAE standard J1772, the benchmark for electrical connectors for electric vehicles. 800.964.4114. www.usa.siemens.com/residential.

  • Installed against the underside of the roof sheathing to fill the truss and gable cavities, Johns Manvilles open-cell spray-applied polyurethane foam insulation not only seals gaps and voids in the roof assembly, but also provides an R-value of up to 6.78 per inch. The resulting sealed attic space is within 7 degrees F of conditioned space and reduces duct leakage. The product is awaiting Greenguard certification. 800.654.3103. www.specjm.com.

    http://www.ecobuildingpulse.com/Images/tmpA905%2Etmp_tcm131-723210.jpg

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    Installed against the underside of the roof sheathing to fill the truss and gable cavities, Johns Manvilles open-cell spray-applied polyurethane foam insulation not only seals gaps and voids in the roof assembly, but also provides an R-value of up to 6.78 per inch. The resulting sealed attic space is within 7 degrees F of conditioned space and reduces duct leakage. The product is awaiting Greenguard certification. 800.654.3103. www.specjm.com.

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    James F. Wilson

    Open-Cell Insulation
    Installed against the underside of the roof sheathing to fill the truss and gable cavities, Johns Manville's open-cell spray-applied polyurethane foam insulation not only seals gaps and voids in the roof assembly, but also provides an R-value of up to 6.78 per inch. The resulting sealed attic space is within 7 degrees F of conditioned space and reduces duct leakage. The product is awaiting Greenguard certification. 800.654.3103. www.specjm.com.

Meanwhile, the back of the plan is cut from the cloth of contemporary suburban home design, encompassing a 36-foot-long swath of space for the kitchen, eating area, and great room; a telescoping patio door creates a 15-foot-wide opening to an almost equally large covered lanai featuring a fireplace and a stand-alone barbecue grill. “This is a wide-open house,” says Thompson. “You could do whatever you wanted with some of these spaces.”

Even with all of these upgrades, KB Home discovered an affordable and marketable formula (sans the $60,000 or so it spent on an 8.75-kW PV array and a companion solar thermal system) that it will replicate and offer as an Energy Star– and WaterSense-qualified plan at Mabel Bridge, a new community near the concept home’s location.

The bulk of those cost efficiencies were found up-front by way of advanced framing practices that included plated roof trusses and wall panels fabricated off-site, building a one-story home on a slab foundation, and designing on 2-foot modules to more precisely order panel products and reduce cut waste during their installation.

Because of the tight shell it created, KB Home also was able to right-size the heat pump capacity from 5 tons to 2 tons, among other swaps that enabled a higher level of performance at a lower overall cost premium. “In green building, there’s a remarkable opportunity to put the puzzle together a little bit differently and make some cost shifts that make it affordable,” says Aaron Davenport, the regional building science advisor for Masco Home Services in Gainesville, Fla., who administers the Environments for Living program.

Still, Glance does not predict that KB Home will see a net-zero return on its investment in the concept home. “In today’s [lending] climate, I’m not sure you could get an appraisal for this house at $380,000,” he says, given the lack of comps for net-zero production homes in Orlando—or anywhere. But making back the money it spent to upgrade to the home’s high level of energy performance was not KB Home’s objective. “There are still challenges in achieving net zero in terms of cost,” says Glance, whose team pushed the energy envelope to find out what it would require, finding it could be done (for the most part) by its existing crews and trade partners. “As we continue to move forward as an industry, I think you’ll see the costs come down while consumer demand goes up, and at some point those two will merge.”

Rich Binsacca is a contributing editor for EcoHome.