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Building Materials Nutrition Label: Declare

Declare is a new “nutrition label” or ingredient label for building materials that will provide an answer to three main questions: First, where does this product come from?  Second, what is it made of?  Third, where does it go at the end of its life?  Seems like three hard questions to answer on one product label, but as you can see in the label attached above, Declare gets the job done.

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Energy Efficiency is Critical in Home Design

The housing market is “starting to gain traction,” according to AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, although people aren’t rushing to add home theaters and the like.

Rather, “home features and products attracting attention are generally focused on energy efficiency or accessibility around the home, as well as wireless systems and low-maintenance, sustainable products,” per Mr. Baker based on findings from the AIA’s Home Design Trends Survey in the second quarter of 2012.
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Study: Eco Labels Influence Home Values

A green label on a single-family home in California provides a market premium compared to a comparable home without the label, according to a new study co-authored by Nils Kok (UC-Berkeley) and Matthew E. Kahn (UCLA).  The authors found that a green home label — Energy Star, LEED, GreenPoint Rated — adds an average nine percent price premium, or about $34,800 more than homes without a green label using the average home price of $400,000 in California.

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Majority of LEED Homes Are Affordable

On the heels of the delay of LEED 2012, the USGBC announced that the organization has certified more than 20,000 LEED for Homes units since the residential program launched in 2008.  Moreover, about 51% of all certified homes qualify as affordable housing, and about 79,000 LEED for Homes units are in the pipeline right now.

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How LEED Delay Impacts LEED for Homes

The process to adopt the next version of LEED has been pushed back according to an announcement by USGBC President and CEO S. Richard Fedrizzi earlier this week. The change means LEED 2012 (now being called LEED v4) will likely not be brought up for a vote on adoption until the middle of next year.

The new standard has already been through four comment periods, with the credit language and the manner in which credits would be evaluated under discussion. There have been revisions in each of these comment periods. A fifth comment period is now scheduled for this fall (October 2 – December 10) and the actual balloting on adoption of LEED v4 is expected to begin June 1, 2013.

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Clayton Homes Intros Home Energy Guide

Clayton Homes, maker of the popular i-House, is the largest producer of homes in the country and accounted for 7% of homes constructed in 2011, according to the annual report of parent Berkshire Hathaway.  They have a large residential footprint, and their efforts to educate home purchasers can go a long way.  So it’s great to learn of their recent announcement of a new home energy label along the lines of what we’ve discussed previously with other builders.

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