Owning an ENERGY STAR certified home has many benefits not just for the environment, but for the owner as well. This article will discuss those benefits and what it takes for a home to qualify for this certification.
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ENERGY STAR is a “government-backed symbol of quality that identifies a new home as being significantly more energy efficient than a standard home.” (Energystar.gov). Homes can become certified when their building materials fall under the standards set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) ENERGY STAR program.
The benefits of owning an Energy Star certified home are:
1) Better efficiency / cost saving: Energy Star homes use less energy for heating, cooling, and water heating which leads to approximately 20% savings on annual utility bills. A typical family living in an Energy Star certified home can save thousands of dollars in maintenance costs over the year.
2) Increased level of comfort: Maintaining an equal or higher level of comfort than a normal home is also a priority of the Energy Star certification process. The quality of indoor air is enhanced by reducing dust, pollen, bugs, and excessive humidity with higher quality filters and comfort is ensured with consistent temperatures between and across rooms.
3) Durability: Durability is also improved with comprehensive water protection, windows that block damaging sunlight, and better grade equipment.
4) Better for the environment: The energy used in regular homes often comes from the burning of fossil fuels at power plants. So, by using less energy to operate, ENERGY STAR certified homes help to prevent air pollution—an added benefit for today’s environmentally-conscious consumer looking for “green” choices.