Columbia Gas of Ohio and AEP Ohio Launch Website for Prospective New Homebuyers Online resource offers home energy efficiency guidelines, solutions and homebuilder recommendations
To meet the expectations of increasingly knowledgeable and selective new home buyers, Columbia Gas of Ohio and AEP Ohio will roll out a new name and website for their energy savings program that provides energy efficiency guidelines - from the ground up - for new home construction.
The newly named program - EfficiencyCrafted(SM) - has over 55 homebuilder partners across Ohio committed to building homes that surpass local building codes. These select builders use advanced construction practices, design details and materials that are verified to meet a higher standard of energy performance. Many of the homes earn the distinction of being ENERGY STAR® Certified.
"Consumers are pushing to know more about the technical components of their home as they relate to energy efficiency," said Pablo Vegas, AEP Ohio president and chief operating officer. "Most people have heard of ENERGY STAR appliances, but now are also interested in how their new home can be ENERGY STAR Certified."
AEP Ohio and Columbia Gas are expanding on what was once a new homes program that mainly supplied energy efficiency training to builders to include helping consumers understand the mechanical features of a new home as they apply to energy efficiency.
"Consumers are beginning to care as much about their homes' energy efficiency and HERS score as the cost per square foot of the house," said Randy Hall, president and rater, Cornerstone Energy Conservation Services.
The Home Energy Rating System (HERS) score is the industry standard by which a home's energy efficiency is measured. It is also the nationally recognized system for inspecting and calculating a home's energy performance. A certified Home Energy Rater assesses the energy efficiency of a home, assigning it a relative performance score. The lower the HERS score, the more energy efficient the home. The U.S. Department of Energy has determined that a typical existing home scores 130 on the HERS Index while a standard new home might be awarded a score of 100. A home with a HERS score of 70 is 30 percent more energy efficient than a standard new home.
"Terms like a HERS® score are becoming more mainstream," Jack Partridge, president of Columbia Gas of Ohio, explains. "Over the years, a shift has occurred in the consumer mindset, and more and more new home buyers understand they can reduce their homes' energy bills while maintaining comfort. Through the EfficiencyCrafted brand, Columbia Gas of Ohio and AEP Ohio will help our customers locate new homebuilders who typically build homes with a HERS score under 70'and often 55 or lower."
Over the last three years, Columbia Gas of Ohio and AEP Ohio have worked with Ohio builders to provide the new home construction industry with the latest information in energy efficiency building materials, systems and appliances. The new website will help consumers understand what they should consider when building a new home and also provide direct access to EfficiencyCrafted builders.