GreenHome Institute 2015-07-30T14:10:03Z https://greenhomeinstitute.org/feed/atom/ WordPress Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Passive House in the Woods – GreenStar Gold]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=8959 2015-07-27T17:06:40Z 2015-07-27T17:06:40Z The WI Passive House in the Woods proves that energy efficiency, renewable energy, passive house and setting your sites on net positive energy go hand in hand in with the other 4 categories of green; health, water, materials, and place. This project has achieved zero energy in 2011 but we are going to be following […]

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The WI Passive House in the Woods proves that energy efficiency, renewable energy, passive house and setting your sites on net positive energy go hand in hand in with the other 4 categories of green; health, water, materials, and place. This project has achieved zero energy in 2011 but we are going to be following up with the team and homeowners to learn little bit more about where they have been over the last 3 years and how they got there.

 

Dining Phwoods Front of house phwoods Garden Phwoods MNGSCertificate_GOLD-Morr_Konkol.ppt

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Green Affordable Housing Capacity Building]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=7718 2015-05-15T17:45:54Z 2015-05-11T19:05:13Z Thanks to the support of the Wege Foundation, GreenHome Institute is offering a free, comprehensive program for nonprofit affordable housing developers who are interested in developing green, LEED certified homes. This four-phase training series is free for nonprofits and affordable housing developers in Michigan, with priority given those doing work in Kent County. Flexible and […]

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Thanks to the support of the Wege Foundation, GreenHome Institute is offering a free, comprehensive program for nonprofit affordable housing developers who are interested in developing green, LEED certified homes.

This four-phase training series is free for nonprofits and affordable housing developers in Michigan, with priority given those doing work in Kent County. Flexible and dynamic, the training is designed to accommodate different types of schedules and along with different degrees of knowledge of the LEED certification and v4 rating system.

Phase 1 - Green Building Core Concepts Training

Phase 1 will begin in the the fall of 2015 with a free training in the core concepts of green building and the LEED v4 rating system. By the end of the 5-day study session or 1-day full training, you will

  • Understand the core concepts of high performance design, construction, and remodeling.
  • Sit for the LEED Green Associates exam

The training, materials, and practice tests are free of charge. Funding is also available to cover a portion of the LEED Green Associates exam cost.

Phase 2 - Residential Accredited Professional Training

Phase 2 will continue in early winter and spring of 2016 with a free training series focused on Understanding LEED for Homes. By the end of the 3-part study session or 1-day full training, you will

  • understand best practices for single and multi-family homes.
  • gain insights from real-world scenarios.
  • shadow a residential energy inspection.
  • sit for the LEED Accredited Homes Professional exam.

The training and materials are free of charge. Funding will be available to cover a portion of the LEED Accredited Homes Professional exam.

Phase 3 - Design & Testing Consulting

In phase 3, GreenHome Institutes will work with your project team staff and trade partners to help ensure your next new construction or rehab project is on track to achieve LEED for Homes certification. We will help you

  • develop design documents, scopes of work, specifications, and accountability forms.
  • perform pre-construction testing.
  • pursue funding and grants for upfront costs.

Funding is available to cover design review, design meetings, and existing building energy testing and inspections.

Phase 4 - Implementation of Greener Buildings

In phase 4, GreenHome Institute will partner with your project team as you undertake the LEED for Homes certification process. GreenHome Institute will provide guidance, testing, inspections, and feedback to help ensure the certification process goes smoothly, resulting in housing that is

  • LEED certified
  • energy efficient
  • and more durable, more comfortable, and healthier for occupants.

Benefits

  • Benefits of the 4-phase training include:
    • Increased staff and trade partner capacity for developing LEED certified homes.
    • Hands-on, professional training in a diverse group setting.
    • Continuing education opportunities and LEED credentials for staff in an ever changing industry.
    • Free energy inspections and/or plan reviews for rehabbed homes or new housing developments.
    • Information regarding funding of green building and LEED certification through grants, donations, sponsorships and financing.
    • Reduced energy and water bills in properties.
    • Improved tenant health.

With nearly 40% of all LEED residential projects being affordable housing it is clear LEED can be achievable and beneficial to the affordable housing sector. Please complete this quick form to get your access to the training.]

Green Affordable Housing Registration

Please submit your inquiry to sign up and we will send back your coupon codes for the course registration once approved.
  • Select all that apply
  • Should be companies / people you have hired for an upcoming project. Insert below as follows xyz Builders / Bob Smith (ignore this field if non)

 

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Terra GreenStar IL Gold Gut Rehab]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=7359 2015-05-07T19:12:52Z 2015-05-02T01:37:28Z  This is not your average gut/rehab by a “flipper.” It's IL's 2nd GreenStar Homes Gold Certified remodel project seeking to preserve and re use a home instead of building new. This home was featured on the 2014 GreenBuilt Tour in IL. At Terra Green, they follow two basic rules: If they wouldn't put it in […]

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 This is not your average gut/rehab by a “flipper.” It's IL's 2nd GrIL Wilmette Gut RehabeenStar Homes Gold Certified remodel project seeking to preserve and re use a home instead of building new. This home was featured on the 2014 GreenBuilt Tour in IL. At Terra Green, they follow two basic rules: If they wouldn't put it in their own home, they won’t put it in yours; and they’ll make the home as affordable and green as possible.  First they started with a team effort that took different skill sets to go around the room and determine the best goals for the project and then after the project held post construction team meetings to discuss issues and lessons learned.  This type of exercise is important to ensure homes meet green targets throughout the process as well determine what can be done better on the next.
This home focuses on a tight building envelope, energy efficiency and high indoor air quality.  Air changes per hour were 30% better than code at 3.14 ACH through advanced air sealing techniques, a self closing door to the garage prevents exhaust from entering the home. No carpet along with Zero VOC finishes and adhesives, MERV 12 air filters, no formaldehyde cabinetry, GreenGuard certified kitchen countertop, duct cleanings, sealed crawlspace and duct joints and radon tight sump dome with a radon mitigation system also help aid the improved air quality of the home. Other improved health and comfort features include keeping major electrical loads away from bedroom, sealed ducts with mastic and there were fully ridged and located appropriately for air distribution.
The builder highlights many little things that add up to a big improvement: caulked penetrations, Energy Star windows, heavy insulation, high-efficiency heating and cooling, ceiling fans, Water Sense certified fixtures and all CFL or LED lighting. The windows were repaired and resealed as opposed to replaced. A 16 SEER HCFC A/C was added for improved comfort, efficiency and reduced global impact.
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The site itself features landscaping that helps reduce cooling load and implements sidewalk shading and a roof water drainage system catches 20% of storm water run off. Grading and slopes are used through out the site to protect the home from potential water damage as keep a home dry is the 1 green application you can implement on an existing home.

Terra Green – Tamarisk Lane Crystal Lake, IL 60014 Type 1 Gold - No State

GreenStar Points

150 Energy
64 Materials
107 Health
21 Water
36 Place

Total Points 378

SIZE: 2,324 square feet
PROJECT TYPE: Single Family- Renovation/Remodel

OWNER/DEVELOPER:

Terra Green Incorporated
345 Little Marryat Road, Trout Valley, IL  60013
847-516-8052
terragreen.vpweb.com
Terra Green are green developers, builders and consultants specializing in eco-friendly building at an affordable price.

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Star Residence Goes GreenStar Silver in Wilmette, IL]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=7354 2015-05-07T19:12:53Z 2015-05-02T01:24:27Z The client is an empty nester who sought to build a green home in Wilmette.  Previous homes she had built in the Northeast included green ideas and concepts, but she desired to expand from those restricted builds and create something for her current lifestyle, while planning ahead for future physical challenges if they were to […]

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TStar Residence Insidehe client is an empty nester who sought to build a green home in Wilmette.  Previous homes she had built in the Northeast included green ideas and concepts, but she desired to expand from those restricted builds and create something for her current lifestyle, while planning ahead for future physical challenges if they were to occur.

This home includes a passive solar, double wall construction, low E windows and doors, light colored shingles, and a detached garage. The home also features paneling installed by Hardie, sun shades, spray foam insulation, energy star appliances, high efficiency furnaces and water heater, reclaimed finishes, low VOC cabinetry, and clean burning fireplaces. Tremendous amounts of passive solar heating and lighting pulse through double wall construction for a tight home. Reflective color shingles were installed to reduce heat gain, while sun shades were implemented to control the lighting, giving the home a remarkable atmosphere. The home was also pre design and wired to be solar pv ready if the homeowner chooses to add solar. Water efficient fixtures, toilets and valve control kitchen sink were installed to conserve water and energy. Milwork, doors and windows contain FSC certified wood and/or 25% post consumer recycled content and are low emitting.

The home has an impressive Air Changes per Hour at 1.4 with a HERS index rating of 51 making it 49% more energy efficient. Native/drought tolerant landscaping made up about 60% of the added landscape and veggie garden raised beds give the ability to grow local food.

New Home Silver - No State W_Front-e1428681969891-300x224

GreenStar Homes Points 

  • Energy 170
  • Materials 105
  • Health 106
  • Water 38
  • Place 83
  • Total 502

SIZE: 2,400 square feet

PROJECT TYPE: Single Family- New Construction

DESIGNER/ARCHITECT:

Coda Design + Build
600 Waukegan Rd. Suite 129, Northbrook, IL 60062
847-920-9700
www.codadb.com
Providing the Chicago Metropolitan area unprecedented residential real estate consultation, design services, construction services and home concierge services.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Coda-Design-Build/190749694435922
Houzz: http://www.houzz.com/coda-design-build

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Chicago’s 1st GreenStar Certified Home]]> http://testing.curlyhost.com/?p=1468 2015-05-07T19:12:53Z 2015-03-21T20:23:42Z The post Chicago’s 1st GreenStar Certified Home appeared first on GreenHome Institute.

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Chicago’s 1st GreenStar Certified Home


Featured on the 2014 GreenBuilt Home Tour in Chicago this GreenStar Type 1 gold certified remodel features a completely gutted and restored Chicago Bungalow.This newly renovated home was also completed by the States 1st GreenHome Professional, Ron Cowgill, former NARI  Chicago chapter president. ” To date this home hasn’t even seen 100 gas bills and before the renovation we had seen $500.00 gas bills that likely lead to the foreclosure of this property.” – Ron Cowgill.

4550WWellington_print_165 4550WWellington_print_5 4550WWellington_print_8 Remodel Type 1 Gold Certified 4550 W Wellington Chicago Certificate-SlootSigned

Professional: D/R Services Unlimited 

GreenStar Rater: Jason La Fleur: Eco Achievers

Conditioned Square Feet : 3691

Certification: GreenStar Gold Remodel

Read more of homes attributes


Living Room

-Insulated fiberglass entry door
-Saved patched wood floors and baseboards
-New energy star windows
-No VOC paint
-Reclaimed light fixtures and fan
-LED lights
-Reused old doors in mantel area

Dining Room

-Saved patched wood floors and baseboards
-New energy star windows
-No VOC paint
-Reclaimed light fixtures

Kitchen

-Saved patched wood floors
-New energy star windows
-No VOC paint
-LED/CFL lights
-Reused old doors in island
-Energy Star appliances
-Water saver faucet
-Saved and restored transom window over insulated fiberglass entry door
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products

1st Floor Bathroom

-No VOC paint
-LED/CFL lights -Water saver faucets
-Dual Flush toilet
-Fan vented outside
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products

2nd Floor Bathroom

-No VOC paint
-Reclaimed light fixtures and fan
-LED recessed lights
-Closed cell foam insulation
-Water saver faucets
-Dual Flush toilet
-Fan vented outside
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products Basement
-Sealed concrete walls and floor
-InSoFast insulation panels on the exterior walls
-No VOC paint
-Green Guard carpeting
-Reclaimed light fixtures in laundry, wine room and furnace room
-LED recessed lights
-Closed cell foam insulation around rim joist
-Water saver faucets
-Reclaimed 1.6 gal flush toilet
-Fan vented outside

1st Floor Bedrooms

-Saved patched wood floors
-New energy star windows
-No VOC paint
-Reclaimed light fixtures and fan
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products

2nd Floor Bedrooms

-New energy star windows
-No VOC paint
-Reclaimed light fixtures and fan
-LED recessed lights
-Green Guard carpeting
-Closed cell foam insulation
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products

Whole House & Exterior

Blower door test
Radon test
Air sealed
Restored back porch to a porch (hard to heat and cool)
Removed old deck and salvaged framing and railings to construct new deck
Compost bin
All Debris and left over materials sorted and recycled or donated to the Restore Chicago
-Baseboard made from Sustainable forest products
-Insulated fiberglass entry door
-Reclaimed old back entry door for wine room door
Vented sump pit
-90+ furnace 13 SEER A/C compressor

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Intro to LEED for Homes V4 – What is the difference? Webinar]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=4558 2015-05-07T19:12:53Z 2015-03-17T13:01:41Z LEED Building Design and Construction for Homes version 4 (V4) is in many ways different than the previous 2008 version. Come learn about the changes that will take place and be ready for the October 31 2016 release before it comes. LEED for Homes v4 applies to new construction and major rehabs single family homes, […]

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LEED Building Design and Construction for Homes version 4 (V4) is in many ways different than the previous 2008 version. Come learn about the changes LEED4Hversion4-01that will take place and be ready for the October 31 2016 release before it comes. LEED for Homes v4 applies to new construction and major rehabs single family homes, neighborhoods, multifamily low, mid, high rise and mixed use buildings. Learn how you can use the program and now and be ahead of the game before the launch date.  We will discuss what's new, what stayed the same and answer questions to help you understand V4 better.

Who?

Builders, Designers, Architect, Developers, Remodelers, Researches and Policy Makers who have past LEED for Homes experience and understanding.

Lessons Learned

  • Know  the basics of the new credits or credit changes in V4 vs 2008
  • Understand what credits remained the same
  • Know where to find more resources on LEED v4
  • Know who can help you in your market achieve V4 LEED

Presenter & Developer – Jay Hall, Ph.D, LEED APH “Jay has 30 years experience in market transformation, sustainable design of buildings, and energy efficiency. He is an expert in building energy modeling, and green building verification. Jay earned his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University. In 1989, he began with ICF International as a consultant working on EPA’s

Jay HallENERGY STAR market transformation programs. Since 2004, Jay has provided independent consulting services to the US Green Building Council in developing the LEED for Homes program. Jay was Acting Director for LEED for Homes for two years. He is also the lead programmatic and verification consultant for the Green Communities Offset Fund. Jay has served on the Home Depot Foundation Awards of Excellence Selection Committee; the Habitat for Humanity International Partnership for Sustainable Buildings Advisory Committee; and, The Healthy House Institute Advisory Board. Jay is also a LEED Faculty member.  Born and raised in Ontario, Canada, for the past 25 years, Jay and his wife, Kim, have resided with their two sons in Annapolis, Maryland. Jay Hall & Associates.

 Steps to access the program and get your completion certificate

1. Download the PPT Slide Handout Guide

2. Watch the recording here.

3. Complete the quiz below

4. Pay the non member ce submittal fee (Members get free submittal) - PAY HERE

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[MI Solar works in Muskegon – Project update]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=6423 2015-05-07T19:12:54Z 2015-03-04T20:18:11Z Hesselink Installation – Completed May 19, 2014 - Update January 2015 Why?  Someone has to take a risk and start the ball rolling.  I have always believed in leading by example. Solar does work in Michigan and I want to provide details that actually demonstrate that solar is affordable for an average home owner, on […]

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Hesselink Installation – Completed May 19, 2014 - Update January 2015

Why?  Someone has to take a risk and start the ball rolling.  I have always believed in leading by example. Solar does work in Michigan and I want to provide details that actually demonstrate that solar is affordable for an average home owner, on an existing home and that it does work in Michigan. It is exciting to see that so far we are on track for the projected 80%  of my $55.00 monthly savings– Renae Hesselink

Renea Headshot & Solar Pv

Details

  • Muskegon County, Egelston Township
  • 5 KW System, 18 panels, SolarWorld, Made in USA, Solarworld purchases from businesses in Michigan exceeds $1 million
  • Footprint: Approximately 360 square feet
  • 2012 Electric Usage 12,149 Kwh, $ 1686.39 total  Average of 1012
  • 1470 square feet roof
  • 2012 Electric Usage  12,149 Kwh, $ 1686.39 total  Average of 1012 Kwh/month
  • 2013 Electric Usage 8,663 Kwh $1283.18 total  Average of 721 Kwh/month

 Related Costs:

  • Removal of a tree $500 *
  • Upgrade Electrical Panel to 200 amp $1500 *
  • Consumers Energy Application $100
  • Amount Financed: $14,580 @ 7% 10 years
  • Payments $168.10
  • Expected Payback 10 years
  • Expected Panel Life 25 years warranty, life 25 years +
  • Estimated 30% Federal Tax Credit when file 2014 taxes $4810
  • Bottom line cost after 30% tax credit $9770.00

Things to consider:

  • My house faces east so I will not get the maximum production – south facing is the best
  • Inverter replacement expected around year 15

Results after the first 26 days of production

*Not adding into the cost of the system to figure out my return on investment, as I would have done this anyway

Here is a summary of my journey:

September 2013 – was notified that the Mi Solar program is available on the west side of Michigan now

Completed the online application to Srinergy, sent them 12 months of my electric usage – copies of my

Consumers Energy billsUpdate Solar Usage

  • Srinergy determined that I would be eligible with the removal of a tree in my front yard – proposal received
  • October 6, 2013 – tree removed
  • October 18, 2013 – applied for a loan through Genisys Credit Union (I did not have a relationship with a credit union in Michigan which was a requirement for a loan) – approved at 7% interest rate
  • October 21, 2013 Received and signed contract from Srinergy
  • Late October determined that my electrical panel needed to be upgraded to a 200 amp – this was a slow process as I tried to find someone locally to do this work. Finally received a proposal in early January and work was completed in early March. With the harsh winter we had some of the delay was due to having work to be completed outside.
  • December 20, 2013 – Generator Interconnection Application completed and submitted to Consumers Energy with a check for $100 and a site plan
  • Then the harsh, harsh winter sets in and we waited and waited until the deep snow piles surrounding my house disappeared and it warmed up enough to work outside – a very long winter and spring didn’t appear until May it seems like. During this time we attempted to find a local electrical contractor that was willing to learn the skills to install. I originally tried to get the contractor that I had worked with to be the one and they were very slow to respond. Finally Sirnergy found Belasco Electric of Muskegon to work with and train.
  • Pulling the building permit from my Township took about three weeks. Not sure why so long but it finally came through the week of May 5, 2014.
  • May 19, 2014 – installation begins and is completed by May 21st. Before we could turn on the system it had to be approved by the electrical inspector and building inspector which all occurred by May 23rd.
  • May 23rd at 5:00 p.m. I flipped the switch on.
  • A week or so later I received my online account information for Watch-A-Watt so I could view my energy production over the web.
  • May 31, 2014 – completed my installation documents. Afadavit for the Renewable Energy Credits, and completion of the work.
  • June 5, 2014 – completed my loan paperwork, first payment due mid-July
  • Consumers Energy needed to install a bi-directional smart meter – I had a smart meter that had been installed last year but needed to be change and they did that on June 11, 2014 at 11:00 a.m.
  • June 9th received a request that our Township Building Inspector wanted to come on-site to inspect – that was done on June 12th and no issue – received a sign-off

solar2 003

Other things to consider:

Somewhere in that timeline (early on) I also contacted my home insurance company to inquire about extra coverage which was not needed.

Local Fire Department – which I have yet to do as of June 19th – received a document from Srinergy (my request) on how to handle a fire on a structure with rooftop solar. I want to take this and meet with my local fire chief. Training and awareness opportunity.

Things that I will be watching and reporting:  Property Value

Project Team

o  Installer: Srinergy  http://srinergy.com/

o  Electrical Contractor: Belasco Electric http://belascoelectric.com/

Sign up for a free home solar assessment today!

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Rural Homes can be Green too!]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=6249 2015-05-07T19:12:55Z 2015-01-05T15:02:42Z Sometimes in the Green Building world we look to the urbanization of homes and buildings to improve location efficiency and give the benefit of community connectivity. Often times we may view homes that are suburban or rural to not be green because of the dependence on the automobile to access resources that are often times miles […]

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THE BER

Thanks to our in kind sponsor Building Efficiency Resources to make this possible!

Sometimes in the Green Building world we look to the urbanization of homes and buildings to improve location efficiency and give the benefit of community connectivity. Often times we may view homes that are suburban or rural to not be green because of the dependence on the automobile to access resources that are often times miles apart.  We know of course that when purely looking at energy, a more rural built home still can meet or even surpass an existing urban home by taking a few more extra energy additions to offset the use of vehicle miles. We also know that more energy is used in homes vs the average consumer vehicle and so there are many opportunities to build better and make up for this.

When MI's first GreenStar Certified Gold Home was completing their certification they found that their site and community impact score was just a few points shy of gold, mostly due the fact their home was located in the middle of the woods in the Manistee National Forest. In contrast we found the energy score of the home to be surpassing gold requirements greatly. The team made a request to see if their energy score that resulted from a HERS 16 and both solar pv / thermal could be a justified trade off for the energy the average family would need to access resources in a more rural area. The GreenStar tech committee and review (Marc Sloot) got to work right away investigating the opportunity.

The goal of the research was to determine what the average family in the average vehicle travels per year in an area identified as rural and then determine what the predicted energy usage of the HERS index is per point and find a way to offset a better HERS index for a trade in SC (Site & Community impact) points.

Researching data on energy used in vehicles for rural families was easy but determining energy usage per HERS index point was not. The HERS index score is not meant to necessarily be something that predicts energy use directly but rather something to compare differently built to code homes. We reached out to Building Efficiency Resources (The BER), one of the leading HERS providers in the country to see if they would help us extrapolate data. This data would includes HERS index, square feet, climate zone, remrate predicted energy usage and number of bedrooms. Eurihea Speciale, founder and principal was gracious enough to provide 550 sets of data for Midwest homes and the Neighborhood Energy Connection (NEC) in St Paul MN provided another 50 but was skeptical we would find a correlation between HERS and energy usage.

Marc Sloot and the Tech Committee were able to come up with somewhat of a comfortable number that showed a reasonable energy usage prediction per verified HERS Index point and while there were many outliers it served the purpose we needed. After some deliberation the team was able to determine a good set of rules for more rural projects who achieve advanced energy scores and low HERS ratings.

GreenStar Exchange of HERS index points for SC points:
—> People can exchange 3 HERS index points for every 1 SC point on the GreenStar checklist up to 10 SC
points.
—> SC points gotten in exchange like this plus SC points they already have for measures 1D-3 + 1D-4 + 1D-5
cannot exceed 13.
—> Actual HERS index + HERS index points given in exchange cannot exceed 75.

This request can be submitted any time before certification via the greenstar waiver form on the checklist.

Interestingly enough because of this research the tech committee thought maybe utilizing the HERS index score as their energy performance pathway may not be the best approach. The next goal of the committee is to instead utilize energy (KWHe)/year/square foot/bedroom to determine a more fair score. This would also open up the use of more tools such as REMrate (without HERS), Passive House modeling and the use of existing home tools such as the DOE: Home Energy Score and Cake System Systems - Residential Energy Performance Score.  Thanks to the tech committee for their flexibility and understanding. Anyone using greenstar is open to work with the committee to find something that makes sense because the idea of a greenhome is evolving and should not be a set of rigid and unchanging principals.

Stay tuned in 2015 for more on this research and an update to the energy performance pathway in GreenStar.

 

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[New Habitat Home Positioned to Receive LEED v4 Certification]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=6253 2015-05-07T19:12:55Z 2015-01-01T02:05:23Z Habitat for Humanity of Kent County, a long time partner but new member of the institute, hopes to complete its first LEED for Homes v4 certified home in the spring of 2015. In fact, this home is positioned to be the first LEED v4 home in Michigan. Introduced a year ago, LEED v4 is the newest […]

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IMG_9796[9]Habitat for Humanity of Kent County, a long time partner but new member of the institute, hopes to complete its first LEED for Homes v4 certified home in the spring of 2015. In fact, this home is positioned to be the first LEED v4 home in Michigan.

Introduced a year ago, LEED v4 is the newest version of the popular internationally accepted accreditation program, offering new categories (such as human health and natural resources), time-saving support tools and enhanced opportunities for building performance management.

Located at Oakland Ave. SW, Habitat Kent’s newest project is part of the Grand Rapids Community College 100th anniversary build. The majority of the home will be built by students studying green construction in the GRCC Tassell M-Tec program. This home, which started in August, is one of three homes that M-Tec students will partner with Habitat Kent to build this year.

IMG_9787[9]The home will have features to reduce its carbon footprint. Special attention to detail at each step of the construction process has been performed with the students on site, including:

  • Cutting-edge water heater designed to improve efficiency through a closed combustion system that pulls fresh combustion air in from the outside – eliminating the need for a fresh air intake
  • Extremely tight and well-insulated house envelope to save in heating costs
  • Additional testing measures, including pre-drywall, infra-red camera testing and blower door tests, to help ensure quality of the thermal envelope

The GRCC students have been eager to learn about sustainable design and the LEED for Homes program. Working on this house provides them the opportunity to understand efficient building practices that go beyond a typical code built home.

“We purposefully chose a GRCC build to be our first LEED v4 home because of the commitment of the GRCC M-TEC programs to sustainable building practices,” said Brandyn Deckinga, Habitat Kent project manager. “As with any LEED-certified building, the partnership with all trade contractors, material suppliers, energy raters and others is vital in the overall success of the build.”

Jamison Lenz, GHI program manager has been working with the students to meet the LEED V4 train the trades requirements and helping them understand many components of a LEED home through on site and classroom education.

To keep up to date with the build, connect with Habitat Kent on Facebook.

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Brett Little http://www.greenhomeinstitute.org <![CDATA[Michigan’s First GreenStar Gold Certified New Home]]> http://greenhomeinstitute.org/?p=6232 2015-05-07T19:12:56Z 2014-12-23T16:22:05Z During the time when Marsha & John Reeves were in the market for a new home after deciding to move from the Ann Arbor region, they happened upon a green home educational session put on by the SE region’s sustainability design expert, Michael Klement. There were sold from there. “According to my teachers, the two primary […]

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Plaque 2 - Version 2

Marsha Traxler Reeves and John Reeves, Homeowners

During the time when Marsha & John Reeves were in the market for a new home after deciding to move from the Ann Arbor region, they happened upon a green home educational session put on by the SE region’s sustainability design expert, Michael Klement. There were sold from there.

According to my teachers, the two primary guidelines for being a good person in the Anishinaabe world are: 1. Don’t take more than you need, and 2. Don’t waste. Since I am always working to be a good person, it was essential to follow these guidelines in building a house. Green building helps people to avoid taking more than they need and to avoid waste as much as possible. We are blessed in this part of the world to have people with a great deal of knowledge and experience in green building, so the choice to build 'green' was easy.” – Marsha Traxler Reeves, Homeowner

Reeves House PicIt was no surprise that when choosing to move to Newaygo, the Reeves contacted Vos Energy Concepts, a small residential construction company in Rockford that only commits to building green homes. The home the Reeves wanted to build was no ordinary new home. It was to be located in the Manistee National Forest on acreage connected to the beautiful Muskegon River - and the goal was preservation. The project removed neither heritage nor important trees from the site. Dan Vos, a builder from Vos Energy Concepts says: “Small tree logs from the land were split in half, left with bark, and were placed inside between the window frames. Support posts for the patios and entrance roof on the home are logs also from the property.” In addition, rainwater will be captured on site with rain barrels. The water will be used to water the medicinal plants that grow around the house along with the gardens. The gardens are not conventional, rather, they follow the practice of huglekultur. Huglekultur is an alternative type of raised bed garden system that stays fertilized and moist from a decaying log planted underneath it. Any unused rainwater, because it comes off a food-grade metal roof, will not harm the local aquifer as it immediately goes back into the ground.

Stove ReevesInside the house you will get a sense of biophilliac design elements including use of tree branches, natural shapes, and ample interior natural lighting which provides views of the natural world outside. Many of the materials, finishes, trims, and cabinets were locally made using regionally sourced or reused materials. As the Vos Energy Concepts website states, “Old School chalkboards were up-cycled, cut to size, polished, and placed as the window sills. Small tree branches standing up, stripped, and finished placed throughout the home are used for hanging scarves, wet gloves, coats, baskets, towels, and whatever else needs a place. A local artist, Kendra McKimmy, put together a design of a tree from the shore of Lake Superior. Stones collected by the homeowner and artist were used in the making of this beautiful tree that is located on the bathroom curved wall facing the soaking tub.”

Loft view 10:14

View from the Loft

“I believe that there are finite resources for all of mankind. So to be a steward of resources becomes a requirement for all of us. I have 11 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren that are counting on those of us in the decision process today to make responsible choices in the use of our finite resources. Building green is one of those responsible choices. ” – John Reeves, Homeowner

From an energy standpoint, this home rated at a HERS index of 16 which makes it 84% more energy efficient than the standard built-to-code home. The HERS index score comes from local Energy Rater, John Kuyper, who reviewed all of the components and mechanicals of the home to accurately project it’s efficiency. The super tight and efficient concrete foam shell of the home sits on insulated concrete floors which retain the heat of the sun in the winter. Above the home, the attic is insulated and air-sealed with a reflective metal roof to keep down the heat from the sun in the winter. All energy star appliances and LED lightbulbs are installed throughout and a Heat Recovery Ventilator keeps fresh air circulating in the house while avoiding a lot of heat loss during the winter. The home also utilizes a very high efficiency and sealed wood stove for cold winters and radiant floors in junction with a mini split air source heat pump powered by solar PV and hot water to keep the energy costs down and the homeowners comfortable.In addition to the fresh air, the air quality in the home is not diminished because the home only uses low- or no-VOC paints, primers, and sealants, as well as tiled bath surrounds that prevent interior mold growth behind the walls.

Certificate Image ReevesThe Reeves joined Consumer's EARP program and started generating electricity in November, 2013, but didn't get a statement from them that included generating information until June, 2014.  Therefore, they only have information from 5/14/14 to 9/12/14, a third of the year and months with long days:

kWh generated 5/14/14 - 9/12/14:  3923

kWh used         5/14/14 - 9/12/14:   1737

2186  generated above used

They expect to achieve see Net Zero Energy but stay tuned!

The GreenStar process, while being fairly easy to utilize, was made easier by Dan Vos’s experience with building many LEED certified homes. The Reeves’ goals on this project did not align with LEED for Homes, but GreenStar certification made a lot of sense for them. While we approached this home using GreenStar in the middle of the construction period, the reviewers were still able to retain what they needed to verify the home’s completion. “Brett and the GreenHome Institute staff were wonderful to work with! They went far beyond my expectations in assisting us through the application and certification process. Their personal attention to the details of our needs was truly impressive," said Marsha Traxler Reeves.

You can review all the greenstar details that went into this home here. 

Don't miss the June 6th 2015 Tour - Continuing Education

Plaque & label

This home was designed and built by Dan Vos, Vos Energy Concepts.

ICF walls & slab work was done by Eldon Howe of Howe Construction

Energy Efficiency and Green Built features include:

-Hers score rating of 16.

-ICF walls-Concrete stained floors.

-Energy Star North star Triple pane windows.

-Solar hot water and Photovoltaic (PV) panels.

-High efficiency wood stove when needed.

-Radiant heat throughout the house.

-HRV (Heat Recovery Ventilator)

-Mini Split Heat Pump that heats and cools the air.

-Insulated blinds for all windows, keeping the winter warmth in and coolness in the summer.

-Insulation under concrete floors.

-Energy star appliances.

-Metal roof.

-Stucco walls on outside of home, giving the homeowners little upkeep on outside.

-Energy star lightning LED throughout the entire house.

-Locally milled rough sawn wood planed by builder and used for floors in loft area, ceilings in bedroom area and also for countertops in bathrooms (Oak and Walnut).

-Tiled in bathrooms-backsplash areas, tub surround & walk-in shower.

-Hanging pendants lights, ceiling lights, and ceiling fans with LED bulbs purchased at the Habitat for Humanity Resore.

-Old school house chalkboards up-cycled for window sills.

-Barrier free design.

 

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