All Blog Posts (912)

An Energy Auditors Professional Mission

Energy Auditors: A Professional on a Mission to Save Energy

by Don Ames,   www.detectenergy.com,  

Hopefully, most people that become Doctors, want to be Doctors. If someone is going to go digging around in my belly, I want them to enjoy what they're doing and not wish they were out leading a group of fisherman on a flounder trip.

I feel the same way about Energy Auditors, anyone that is going to test my…

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Added by Don Ames on October 18, 2011 at 10:00pm — 2 Comments

Creating Shared Value - The Future of Business

“Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day.  Teach him to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”

-Chinese proverb

 

Let’s say you own a waterfront business that invests the time and resources to teach that man or woman to fish.  You routinely offer “Fishing 101” classes.  Your…

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Added by Melissa Baldridge on October 18, 2011 at 8:30pm — 2 Comments

COST VS VALUE VS PROFIT FOR BUILDING OR RETROFITTING

COST, as affected by real property (land & structures): Cost of land and assembling a structure as an improvement to the land. The cost of the structure is the purchase of land, planning, estimating, managing, labor and profit of the materials assembled or installed for the production of a building on improving the site. Cost is materials or unit value and the business/investment process of completing the structure or improvement on site for a…

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Added by Chris J Folse on October 17, 2011 at 12:30pm — No Comments

Priorities for Energy Efficiency

Energy Retrofits and Priorities for Energy Efficiency

by Don Ames,   www.detectenergy.com

energy efficiency

Nothing worse than saving…

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Added by Don Ames on October 15, 2011 at 9:30am — No Comments

Innovators 'home' in on energy

Fortunately for the rest of us, some people missed the message, the one that says we’re in an economic slide so slippery there is no climbing back up.

I had a chance to speak to several of these optimists recently. No, they are not members of the Pollyanna Club; they are green energy entrepreneurs, those who are innovating and growing companies as the rest of the world downsizes. (See …

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Added by Elisa Wood on October 13, 2011 at 9:58am — No Comments

A Solution for Appraising Efficiency- The buyer's point of view

How much is it worth to a home buyer to invest in energy efficiency improvements? A minimum estimate is that the annual savings on the energy bill pay for the annual cost of the investment when financed. This removes the primary reason for home buyers not to invest in energy efficiency -- lack of money. When faced with a choice of continuing to pay for wasted energy or making improvements that will make the house more comfortable and more valuable, buyers will opt for the…

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Added by Doris Ikle on October 11, 2011 at 9:00pm — 20 Comments

Follow Price Signals to a Green Revolution

Tom Friedman delivered an engaging keynote speech at USGBC’s Greenbuild last week in Toronto.  His message around the difference between a green party (“Yeah, we’re BP – Beyond Petroleum!”) and a green revolution was very inspiring.  His words fit right in with my presentation the next day on …

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Added by Laura Reedy Stukel on October 11, 2011 at 6:21pm — 1 Comment

Steve Jobs's Lessons for the Home Performance Industry

Mac vs PC Home performance is to Apple as standard building practices are to the generic PC industry. We, the adherents to the whole house, high quality approach to assessing and managing the performance of homes, are Apple. The standard, old school, business-as-usual approach to building and renovating homes is the rest of the computer industry.

This idea got seeded after reading James Stewart's article,…

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Added by Peter Troast on October 11, 2011 at 2:00pm — 2 Comments

Health Issues Caused By Insulation Products

Does anyone know anyone who has had decreased health due to the installation of insulation materials?  I've been emailing back and forth with a man who had Atticat loose fill installed in two exterior walls.  He claims the odor is persisting and has developed teeth gnashing.

Added by A. Tamasin Sterner on October 11, 2011 at 4:27am — 2 Comments

Energy Valuation

I've been a contractor since 1972 and an accredited appraiser and real estate broker since 1990 and a HERS Rater since 2006. I'd like to know why everyone thinks poking sharp sticks at appraisers will get you more help? If I came to your job and started telling you how to do your business do you think I'd get your cooporation? I think a lump sum line adjustment will be easier to get into the mainstream valuation arena. Appraisals are not Energy Reports. Most appraisers aren't energy raters…

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Added by Chris J Folse on October 10, 2011 at 1:31pm — 1 Comment

Cost-Effectiveness of Home Energy Retrofits

Are Energy Saving Retrofits Cost-Effective?

by Don Ames

weatherization program

Government and Utility based programs that offer weatherization and other energy saving…

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Added by Don Ames on October 10, 2011 at 1:00pm — 5 Comments

Getting What It's Worth - Green Home Value

EcoHome Magazine provides a great case study on a home builder that takes the extra steps to provide the data points an appraiser needs during a green home appraisal.

Yup, it's too bad we need to take these extra steps right now.  And yup, you'd be crazy not to do the extra work!  The new…

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Added by Laura Reedy Stukel on October 7, 2011 at 11:01am — No Comments

Defining GreenMLS – Great video!

Wow. GreenMLS is friendly, fun and adds value when you look at it via an excellent cartoon video!  Kudos to USGBC Colorado and the Governor’s Energy Office in Colorado for breaking it down, making it fun and keeping it real!

Please share with folks who might not be aware of the growing inventory of green/energy efficient homes and how to properly promote them during resale!

Added by Laura Reedy Stukel on October 7, 2011 at 10:02am — No Comments

Energy efficiency economics: Beyond 101

At first blush, the economics of energy efficiency seem straightforward.

A business installs lighting controls or some other improvement. The business then sees its energy costs drop. From the savings, the business repays the investment over weeks, months or years, and then turns a profit on the asset.

While that equation holds true, analysts increasingly value the worth of energy efficiency in other more…

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Added by Elisa Wood on October 7, 2011 at 4:20am — No Comments

A Solution for Appraisers--the Weak Link

"Money makes the world go 'round," goes the old saying, and it's certainly true in the world of residential energy efficiency.  Many worthy home House and dollar sign symbols energy upgrade projects are cancelled or put on hold because the owners feel they won't get their investment back if they should sell soon.  Likewise for new construction, many builders in the speculative home market feel forced to build to the lowest performance standard, because energy upgrades won't "appraise out."

Plainly put,…

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Added by Gary Kahanak on October 1, 2011 at 5:00am — 22 Comments

CHP: Not the Brad and Jen of energy, but...

I hesitate to start this blog with the words “combined heat and power.”  You might stop reading.

Okay, so it’s not the Brad and Jen of energy. (That would be solar and wind.) But what it lacks in glamour, it makes up for in constancy and results. It’s an old guy, been around for about a century. And while its name might not sound green, it offers an extraordinarily efficient way to energize buildings.

About once a year, the …

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Added by Elisa Wood on September 30, 2011 at 8:27am — No Comments

Climate Policy Initiative Analysis Finds US Building Energy Codes Work

The Climate Policy Initiative has completed a study to measure and evaluate the impact of residential building energy codes on total household energy consumption, “Codes to Cleaner Buildings: Effectiveness of US Building Energy Codes”, was released by the Climate Policy Initiative (CPI) of San Francisco, California on September 7, 2011. Conducted by Jeff Deason and Andrew Hobbs of CPI, the study was done to see if building energy codes make an impact on home energy use and greenhouse gas…

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Added by Andrew Navolio on September 28, 2011 at 2:30pm — No Comments

What's Next? Getting off the fossil mainline - and proving it!

This is a long one, for intrepid geeks and those who appreciate energy intrigue - I couldn't help myself, I'm sure you understand... There is so much fun to be had in the energy world these days, the limits to your imagination are bounded only by your budget.

Allow me to introduce myself first, then on to the meat of hot water, off-grid, and energy monitoring. Lots of links and name dropping here for those who want some nitty gritty how to.

 

I've been a hands-on energy…

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Added by Paul Scheckel on September 27, 2011 at 3:24pm — 1 Comment

Home Energy Rap

Yes, you read the title right. Not only is Home Energy magazine providing bimonthly content in the form of a magazine, but we have now officially entered into the wild world of rap. Our very own editor, Jim Gunshinan presented the following Home Energy rap at the 2011 National Association for State Community Services Program (NASCSP) Training Conference that took place in Seattle last week. If nothing else, it will make you smile.…

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Added by Home Energy Magazine on September 26, 2011 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Only Dummies Replace Windows



It's amazing to me how we keep chasing windows in the Building Performance industry as if they were an important energy component. They are not (except when they are, I'll explain). Let’s look at some basic realities.

Joe’s Crazy Window Facts

 

  1. All windows are bad
  2. There are no HIGH performance windows, it's an oxymoron, refer back to item #1
  3. Windows are not drafty
  4. Low E windows don’t save on heating
  5. Occupants don’t…
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Added by Joseph Novella on September 26, 2011 at 1:30pm — 3 Comments

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