The New American Home is ‘Emerald’ Green

Like the rest of the home, the kitchen of The New American Home 2018 features the very latest in design and performance efficiency.

The New American Home® 2018 (TNAH) and The New American Remodel™ 2018 (TNAR) have both achieved NGBS Green Certified, Emerald level, the highest certification available for high-performance and sustainable homes under the National Green Building Standard (NGBS).

How does a builder or remodeler achieve such a shining level of performance and still meet schedule and budget constraints, particularly in such a high-profile project? Good planning, communication, smart choices and organization, say green building veterans.

The NGBS requires meeting all of the requirements in each of six categories, or chapters, as well as a minimum level of performance to qualify for certification at the Bronze level.

To reach the higher levels of certification — Silver, Gold or Emerald — the home must achieve that higher level in each chapter. Therefore, while both homes have been built with many innovative energy-efficiency strategies and are expected to be significantly more efficient than the average new code-built home, they have also been constructed with many other high-performance aspects to meet and, in some areas, exceed the Emerald requirements.

NGBS certification involves two third-party inspections to verify the design strategies have been properly incorporated into the home; a rough inspection (pre-drywall installation) and a final inspection.

We recently talked with Drew Smith of Two Trails Inc., the Energy & Green Building Consultant overseeing the NGBS certification for both homes, who highlighted a few of the many other high-performance features incorporated into TNAH:

Lot Design, Preparation and Development

  • Stormwater management practices including swales and permeable outdoor materials
  • Plants and gardens designed to encourage wildlife (i.e. butterfly gardens)

Resource Efficiency

  • Building layouts and structural systems designed to reduce and optimize material use
  • Flashing design to minimize water entry and direct water for drainage
  • Five or more regional materials used for major building elements

Water Efficiency (55% reduction)

  • Energy Star certified washing machine with a water factor of less than 6.0
  • High-efficiency micro spray, drip-lines and irrigation controller

Indoor Environmental Quality

  • Reclaimed hard-surface flooring
  • Low-VOC paints and finishes, low-VOC interior adhesives and sealants
  • Energy Star exhaust fans, dehumidification system
  • Whole-building ventilation system configured for precision fresh air introduction

Operation, Maintenance & Building Owner Education

  • Owner’s Manual provided along with on-site training for owner

Registered 2018 IBS and KBIS attendees can tour The New American Home and The New American Remodel daily during show hours via complimentary shuttle buses departing every 30 minutes from the Orange County Convention Center. Timed tickets are distributed on a first-come, first-served basis on the day of each tour in the West Concourse, Level 2, Hall C Lobby, Booths #W39 and #W38.

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