A Value-Engineered Green Built Home...
Nebraska’s Energy Efficient, Affordable
Single Family House

Draft-blocking material covers the outside walls
while insulation board is secured to the roof.
Water saving fixtures are used
in the home's baths A unique home is going up in a new development on the southwest edge of Lincoln. What makes this home special?

From the outside, it looks much like neighboring homes: It’s a 1,248 square foot home with a living room featuring a built-in entertainment center, kitchen area with a breakfast bar area, dining room, three bedrooms and two baths.

Although this home appears to be similar in construction to the other homes in the development it was designed and constructed with features that, not only will reduce the owner’s future energy costs while increasing comfort, but also reduces the homes initial and future impact on the environment.

This new home will demonstrate that quality, energy efficient, environmentally friendly and affordable housing can be built with little or no extra initial construction costs and return a lifetime of savings for the new owners.

Green Building Nebraska Certified HomeSM is your assurance a new home has been built to exacting energy and environmental standards established by the State of Nebraska's Energy Office and constructed by a Certified Builder. The one-story home has a full basement with attached garage. The construction plans detail the features that make this energy efficient home different.

The house is being used for on-site training and as a laboratory. During the week of November 2004, Ric Guilbert of Steven Winter Associates used the house for a framing demonstration of Optimum Value Engineering techniques. Optimum Value Engineering is the process of comparing alternative materials and methods to determine the least costly combination that will result in the desired end product.

The home is designed to maximize energy efficiency and green building techniques and materials. After the home is completed in February 2005, it will remain vacant as a show home until the Spring Parade of Homes in Lincoln, Nebraska. The home’s energy use will be monitored for up to a year to evaluate the different building techniques utilized.

Through the U.S. Department of Energy’s Building America program and the Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings, Steven Winter Associates is assisting the Nebraska Energy Office in the design and construction of a prototype home that will benchmark energy-efficient, affordable housing in Nebraska. A $99,334 State Energy Program - Special Projects grant is providing a portion of the cost of this project.

Some of the features that make this home energy efficient or “green built:”

Windows, porch areas and the main entrance are located to minimize the impact of direct sun and cold winter winds.

A recycling center is housed in the garage. During construction, the builder collected and separated construction wastes that were recyclable.

A 20 percent flyash concrete mix was used for the foundation, the basement floor and driveway. Flyash is a waste by-product of electrical generation that is normally landfilled.

A number of recycled content finish products are used in the house such as: a) interior doors, b) carpeting, c) carpet pad, d) finger jointed, painted, trim boards made of small pieces of waste lumber, e) porch decking and f) fiberglass insulation.

A number of environmentally friendly products were used during construction such as: a) a spray foam insulation that is made from soy beans and is free of harmful toxins, b) a non-leaching damp proofing on the outside of the foundation walls and c) low water use showerheads and toilets.

Special framing and construction details were used throughout the house such as: a) energy heel trusses and b) a vented roof cavity that helps to reduce heat build-up in the attic.

The house has special framing and construction details such as: a) engineered roof trusses and floor joists that don’t require any of the heating/cooling ductwork to be located in the attic space and b) “reduced lumber” framing requirements.

The house features products and equipment that help to improve indoor air quality such as: a) paints that have reduced levels of ingredients that cause breathing issues, b) gypsum board joint compound with low toxic levels, c) a sealed sump pit with a radon mitigation system and d) a sealed combustion gas furnace and water heater.

A programmable thermostat is used in the house and is an easy way to reduce energy use.
For more information use the following links:
  • Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings
  • Steven Winter Associates
  • U.S. Department of Energy’s Building America
  • Disclaimer Energy Office Home Privacy Policy/Accessibility