Building Your Vancouver Home for Net Zero Energy Efficiency
One of the most popular housing trends over the last few years has been the developmental shift towards net zero homes. “Net Zero” means that the home produces as much, or more, renewable energy than what it consumes.
The reason for their surge in popularity can be attributed to the consumers’ desire to lower their carbon footprint, as well as the potential to increase their return on investment.
However, not any old house can achieve net zero energy efficiency. There are some important tips to be aware of if you want to build your Vancouver home to do so. But before we get into it, here are some of the reasons why it has become so popular.
Benefits of Building your Home for Net Zero Energy Efficiency
The first benefit homeowners receive is that net zero energy-efficient homes drastically reduce their carbon footprint. These homes produce fewer greenhouse gasses than conventional homes due to their ability to convert sunlight into energy. On top of this, they also consume significantly less energy. As a result, creating a net zero home is a great way to reduce global pollution.
The second benefit for homeowners is the long-term savings and value that net zero homes generate. Since they produce as much energy as they consume, the yearly energy bill is often zero dollars.
Furthermore, the development of these homes often comes with tax breaks and potential cost savings through grants or reduced permit fees. Additionally, net zero homes usually have a higher property value if sold.
Now that we have a bit of an idea of why they have become so popular, here are some important tips to follow when building your Vancouver home for net zero energy efficiency.
Tips for Building a Net Zero Energy Home
Use the Right Appliances
While you may be thinking that a net zero home has fewer appliances, that usually is not the case. Achieving net zero energy efficiency is all about being cutting down on excess energy consumption. From refrigerators to air conditioners to heat pumps and air purifiers, finding an energy-efficient alternative will go a long way towards reducing energy consumption.
Effectively Manage and Oversee Energy Usage with a Dashboard
For homes that are trying to achieve net zero energy levels, they need to be aware of their consumption and generation. There are plenty of energy management systems that can provide real-time information on electricity usage within the house. Using one will keep you informed if your house is at net zero energy levels.
Position the House Location to Maximize the Amount of Sun
A net zero energy home needs to generate its power from somewhere. Thankfully, the sun is a limitless source of energy that can be harnessed effectively. To do so, make sure your windows are in a position to capture as much light as possible. This can help generate more direct sunlight to effectively reduce heating costs and lighting.
Second, make sure your solar panels are positioned to be exposed to as much sunlight as possible. The solar energy generated through these panels is your primary source of energy. There needs to be enough energy produced to power everything in your home.
Have Premium Insulating and Sealing
As we have mentioned, net zero homes do not just produce their own source of energy, they waste less energy than traditional homes. When a net zero energy house is constructed, great importance has to be placed on the sealing of the building envelope. This will help keep cool air and moisture out of the home.
This sealing needs to be paired with generous levels of insulation throughout the house. Retaining heat in the winter is paramount.
Building your Vancouver home for net zero energy efficiency would be a wise investment. However, it should not be started without a detailed plan. Achieving net zero energy takes a solid understanding of every part of house construction. Therefore, contacting a professional is a great way to get started.
Abstract Homes and Renovations Inc., is an award-winning custom home builder based in Vancouver, British Columbia. With 30 years of experience, Abstract Homes builds and renovates homes on the Lower Mainland with efficiency, integrity, and quality in mind.
If you have any questions about this article or would like to talk to us about building or renovating your home, please call us at (604) 220-5665.