This is The New American Home — a project built every year in conjunction with the NAHB’s International Builders’ Show — in Orlando, Florida. The 4,000 square-foot home collected eight green building certifications, including LEED Platinum and NAHB Emerald, and is expected to consume 52% less energy than a standard home of similar size. Plus, a 4.0 kW solar array provides about 18% of annual energy needs.
For the record, TNAH received or qualified for NAHB Emerald, LEED-H Platinum, Energy Star, Indoor airPlus, Florida Green Building Coalition Platinum, Florida Yards and Neighborhoods Designation, Florida Water Star Gold, and the DOE’s Builders Challenge.
In many respects, TNAH was built for energy efficiency. The blower door test measured 0.35 air changes per hour at a negative pressure of 50 Pascals — solidly in Passive House territory for this one measurement. To minimize air leakage, spray foam was used on the underside of the roof deck and around penetrations and framing.
Elsewise, TNAH has heavily insulated ICF exterior walls, low-e coated and argon-filled windows, an Energy Star roof covering, an 18 SEER air-source heat pump system, sealed ductwork, a solar hot water system, Energy Star appliances, and LED and CFL lighting.
TNAH is completely geeked out with an energy management system to shift energy usage to off-peak periods, full home automation and control by smartphone or tablet, motorized exterior solar screens and interior privacy shades, a home security system with mobile control, and a central vacuum system that vents debris to the outside.
The New American Home was designed by Architecture by Phil Kean, LLC and built by Phil Kean Designs, Inc. At 4,181 square feet, it’s one of the smallest TNAH projects in many years and could very well be the greenest. The home has six bedrooms, four and a half bathrooms, a gallery and bar, a lanai and pool, and a three-car garage.
Credits: James F. Wilson; Timberlake Cabinetry (exterior yard photo only).