Executive Homes is proud to be the 2020 RESNET President's Award recipient, which recognizes the US production builder with the highest percentage of homes that achieve a 51 HERS Rating or better. Executive joins an exclusive list of only two other builders that have received this prestigious award - Lennar (the country’s largest builder by revenue and this year’s runner-up) and KB Home (the country’s fifth largest builder) – and we’re the only builder in the award’s seven-year history to have 100% of their homes score a 51 or below on the HERS Index (averaging an amazing 48.1).
The HERS Index is a scoring system established by the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) – it’s the “industry standard by which a home’s energy efficiency is measured.” RESNET describes the HERS score “as a sort of miles-per-gallon sticker for houses.” It provides prospective buyers and homeowners with an objective measurement of a home’s energy performance compared to a “Reference Home,” which is “a design modeled home of the same size and shape as the actual home.”
Obtaining a HERS Rating requires “the most in-depth energy performance assessment of a home that you’ll find.” To calculate the rating, a RESNET-accredited energy rater inspects each of our homes twice to measure its energy characteristics, such as insulation levels, window efficiency, wall-to-window ratios, HVAC system efficiency, and the solar orientation of the home. The energy-rater also performs a blower door test after the home is constructed to measure door and duct leakage. We are the only builder in Oklahoma to guarantee that each of its homes are rigorously inspected by a RESNET-approved energy rater.
The HERS scoring system is very easy to interpret and apply. On the HERS Rating Index, the Reference Home is the benchmark standard for new homes and scores 100, while a theoretical net-zero home that produces as much energy as it consumes scores a perfect 0 (such as homes outfitted with solar panels). Most existing homes do not meet the specifications outlined in the International Energy Conservation Code and score between 130 and 150.
The HERS Rating has an inverse relationship to a home’s energy efficiency, where every point below 100 represents a one percent improvement in energy efficiency. Thus, the lower a home’s HERS Rating, the more energy efficient it is. For example, homes qualify for EnergyStar® certification with a HERS Rating of 85, meaning they are 15% more efficient than a standard new home and 45% more efficient than a typical resale home.
As the only NAHB Certified Green Professional among the top 35 volume builders in Oklahoma, we never settle for typical or standard. Our dedication to energy efficiency results in homes that consistently score between 43 and 51 on the HERS Index. That means our homes are 34-42% more efficient than EnergyStar® homes, 49-57% more efficient than standard new homes, and 79-87% more efficient than typical resale homes! This exceptional efficiency is a product of our homes always including premium energy-efficiency features.
Every Executive home, no matter the floor plan or price, is guaranteed to be loaded with high-performance “slab-to-roof” energy-efficiency features, which include: R-5 perimeter slab insulation, spray-foam insulation on exterior walls, double-paned “low-e” windows with argon gas to limit energy emittance, 16 SEER air conditioning unit, 95% efficient furnace, blown-in attic insulation with a 38 R-Value, and solar board roof decking. Our homes are also certified to have less than 4% duct-leakage (compared to 15-25% for non-certified homes). In addition to these top-of-the-line features, Executive engages a Denver-based energy firm to perform a J-Calc to determine the precise HVAC tonnage needed for optimal performance. The premium efficiency features in each home we build produce incredible utility cost savings and increased resale value.
HERS rated homes consistently produce higher utility cost savings compared to non-HERS rated homes. For example, HUD estimates annual utility cost savings of Energy Star® homes at $200-400. However, based on our fantastic HERS Ratings, RESNET estimates that Executive’s clients will receive annual utility cost savings of $1,250-1,800!
In addition to energy savings while living in your home, a recent study conducted by Freddie Mac found that HERS Rated homes have higher sales prices than unrated homes. In fact, Freddie Mac’s survey of more than 800,000 homes found that homes with a HERS Rating of 53 or better (which each Executive home achieves) sell for 4.4% more than comparable unrated homes!
Knowledge of the HERS Rating Index provides you with excellent insight into the energy performance and savings you can expect when living in the home. We know energy efficiency is a crucial consideration when purchasing a home, so we conveniently display the HERS Rating Certificate on the garage breaker box in each of our homes, and on each home’s webpage. Don’t forget to check out the HERS Rating during each stop of your home search!