Deltec Homes, a leading provider of prefabricated energy efficient homes, delivered the first net-zero home from their Renew Collection.
Dr. Marie DeVerneil, a professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, first discovered the company in 2012, but it was the launch of their net-zero collection in 2013 that convinced her to purchase a Deltec home.
Building a home that had a low impact on the environment was top priority for DeVerneil. An organic farmer and mother of a LEED architect and oceanographer, she describes herself and her family as very "green".
"I teach a course in cultural sustainability [at UMBC] and am a member of the sustainability movement there," she said. "I knew if I were to build a house, it would have to be as fossil fuel free as possible."
Located in Virginia, the home will feature passive solar design, solar panels with battery backup, a double stud wall and mineral wool insulation.
The rectangular shape of the Ridgeline model DeVerneil chose was also new territory for Deltec, who is best known for their round homes.
"I love Deltec's round homes, but this model is the perfect scale for me," she said. DeVerneil plans to move in when she retires.
The Renew Collection has six models with three more slated to launch later this year. Each home is designed to reduce energy consumption by two-thirds in comparison to an average home. The remaining one-third can be powered with renewable energy, making yearly energy use net-zero.
"The construction of the DeVerneil home has been very exciting for us," said Steve Linton, president of Deltec Homes. "There are several years of research and planning behind the Renew Collection and to see it launch and gain popularity so quickly has been validating."
The Renew Collection came as a result of higher demand for more energy efficient homes.
"We truly believe this is the future of homebuilding," said Linton. "Codes are becoming stricter and people are becoming more cautious of the environment and energy use."
This is the first of nearly 20 homes from the Renew Collection scheduled to be delivered by mid-2015.