More people than ever before want to go green. People are thinking about how to save the planet, lower their carbon footprint, and save their wallets from high energy bills. If these are your goals, you can achieve them with an energy-efficient custom home. According to the Alliance to Save Energy, homes and buildings are where we use much of our energy, with buildings accounting for 40% of all U.S. energy consumption.
Our suggestions won’t make your home 100% energy efficient. However, you’ll be able to reduce your energy needs significantly. Here are six tips for creating an energy-efficient custom home.
You can reduce your energy bills with passive solar heating. A passive solar home collects the sun’s heat through south-facing windows. According to the Department of Energy (DOE), passive solar design leverages a building’s site, climate, and materials to reduce energy usage.
A well-insulated home retains this heat while reducing energy consumption. You can use passive solar heating by designing large south-facing windows into your custom home design.
Seasonal Passive Solar Heating
Orienting your home for passive solar heating could also mean that your home will receive too much sunlight and heat during the summer. Therefore, if you want to get the most out of passive solar heating, we recommend the following tips:
- Planting a deciduous tree (a tree that sheds its leaves every year) in front of your south-facing windows reduces sunlight during the summer but still allows your home to get maximum solar heat during the winter.
- Invest in sun shades, awnings, or a roof overhang to block the sun in the summer.
- Minimize west-facing windows because these can let in too much heat during the summer. Plant trees to block heat if your custom home has many west-facing windows.
A Compact Layout
People often believe that a home’s layout only matters because of curb appeal. However, picking the right design also helps you create an energy-efficient custom home. A compact structure or reduced surface area reduces interior heat loss. A more expansive home will lose more heat. Cube and spherical-shaped homes are energy-efficient. In addition, narrow, taller homes are more efficient than spread-out one-story homes.
Energy-Efficient Doors and Windows
Windows and doors that aren’t energy-efficient jeopardize the excellent insulation of your home. Your windows and doors should seal openings tightly and have proper weather stripping. Energy-efficient doors and windows can be more expensive upfront, but you’ll benefit from long-term energy savings. In 2022, the U.S. News & World Report discussed how you could save between $100 and $600 annually with energy-efficient windows.
When installing new lights in your custom home, choose LEDs. LED lighting uses 90% less energy and lasts up to 25 times longer than traditional lighting sources.
Smart thermostats turn on/off heating and air conditioning once your home’s temperature passes a certain threshold. You can also program smart thermostats to turn your systems down during the day or night when you aren’t present.
By incorporating these features into your custom home as you build it, you can be sure you are doing the most to create a comfortable yet energy-efficient home.
Build Your Dream Home With T&G Builders
T&G Builders, located in Berlin, MD, has been a premier waterfront custom home builder and home improvement contractor serving Worcester and Sussex Counties for over 25 years. We are a locally owned and operated business known for our uncompromising commitment to quality, our passion for using innovative technology and premium materials to complete projects, and our exceptional attention to detail. In addition to building custom homes, we also specialize in remodeling your current house into your dream home! Our skilled team can assess your needs, determine the right design for your addition or improvement, and complete the entire construction process.