Many builders claim to build “Green”. Very few builders actually get their homes tested, inspected, verified and certified “Green”. At Pyramid Homes our homes are inspected by Energy Concepts, a third party “Green” verifier and a US Department of Energy “Energy Star” qualifier, during the crucial stages of construction. They test our homes and air ducts for air leakage. They gather data at each inspection and send it in to the NAHB Research Center for “Green” certification. Most of our homes rate “GOLD” per the Green Building Guidelines established by ANSI for the NAHB. All new homes, by code, must meet the Model Energy Code (MEC). This gives them a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) score of 100. “Energy Star” qualified homes must score 85 or less. The lower the HERS score the more energy effecient the home. Our homes HERS score is typically below 55. So, at Pyramid Homes, we don’t just claim to be building “Green”, we back it up with testing and certifications!
Most homes leak more than 30% of conditioned air into the attic. The simplest way to save on your electricity bill is to make sure that you seal up your ducts and furnace and make sure that your ducts are insulated properly. Keeping a clean filter also is an easy and inexpensive way to save on your electricity bill.
I just returned from the IBS. I went seeking knowledge for new products and better ways to run and market Pyramid Homes. There were many companies represented showcasing what they had to offer. It took a full day of walking around and talking with the vendors that interested me. There are a lot of innovation in appliances, making them “SMART”. Some of them can now tell you what they need, whether it is a filter, adjustments, or service. They can learn your habits and program themselves accordingly. They now have electric plugs with built in USB ports for easier charging of your tech toys. Not new, but I also found resources for walk-in tubs/showers. Since we are in a retirement market, I think that this is a feature that some of Pyramid Homes customers will be interested in.
There were many educational sessions on anything you can imagine that has to do with home building. The most interesting thing that I walked away with is that ALL indicators say that we are at the start of the next housing boom and that it should last 6-10 years. What that means to the consumer is both interest rates and pricing will go up. There is no better time to buy a home than right now!
What are some of the Energy Star features Pyramid Homes uses in their homes? Anwar Khalifa strives to make the homes Pyramid Homes builds as energy efficient as possible. Some of the Energy Star features we use are…
*Seal and Insulate- Foam insulation in the outside walls and on the rafters in the heated and cooled areas, use tape, caulk and weather stripping to seal windows and exterior doors
*Use Energy Star light fixtures and appliances in all our homes
*High efficiency air conditioner with programmable thermostat and seal all air ducts and registers.
*Use vinyl windows with Low-E glass in all our homes
Why does Pyramid Homes choose to build GREEN? With the cost of fuel forever on the rise, we feel it is important to build our homes as energy efficient as possible while keeping the cost affordable for the consumer. In order to do that we choose and use only the energy efficient features that are cost effective. We use GREEN features to ensure that our tightly built energy efficient homes also have healthy indoor air quality. We also enjoy finding new ways to cut down on material and resource waste, doing our small part for the environment. Anwar Khalifa, President.
The firm’s Builder Market Health Index gives many Texas MSAs a market health indicator well above 50 out of 100 (50 being the minimum to be considered healthy).
Austin-Round Rock had a score of 86.5, second only to Raleigh-Cary, NC, which had 86.9.
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown scored a 77.3, San Antonio a 75.6, Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington a 70.7 and El Paso a 65.8. Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood and McAllen-Edinburg-Mission each scored 54.5.
According to Hanley Wood, the index weighs housing conditions in the 100 largest home building markets based on the 2011 outlook for six key variables most associated with strong home sales. Those include unemployement rate, change in unemployment numbers, home price appreciation, household growth, job growth and median income growth.