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How This North Carolina Builder Does High-Performance Homes

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High-Performance Homes

How This North Carolina Builder Does High-Performance Homes


May 13, 2021
House framing
Photo: Christian Delbert | stock.adobe.com

The latest series from the National Association of Home Builders takes viewers on a tour of high-performance homes, with the latest installment featuring an Asheville, NC home built by Red Tree Builders. The project, titled Robinwood, features balanced ventilation, high indoor air quality, and mindful material choices. The builder added exhaust fans for the bathroom, water closet, kitchen, and the garage. Because of North Carolina soils, the builder installs a passive radon mitigation system that shifts to an active system if high levels of radon are detected. To combat water in the building envelope, the builder incorporated drainage mats behind the brick walls.

Mindful Material Choices

Durability and health were key factors in selecting materials for the project. The basement walls are stucco (precast off-site), and composite decking includes high recycled content. Drainage mats are incorporated behind the brick walls to handle water, the top concern in the building envelope construction.

“The buyer for the home questioned if the floors had been finished yet on the walkthrough, as she has a high sensitivity to chemicals and had never been in a new home without having a reaction,” Bryant noted about the water-based, volatile organic compound (VOC)-free finish on the white oak floors.

Translating Building Science to Home Owners

This home has a fully controllable multi-speed HVAC system connected to a smart home thermostat, which Erin-Spinney would frame to prospective buyers as a zonal system that allows them to control different rooms via a phone app or their smart home touchscreen. An empty-nester client can keep certain rooms ‘off’ unless they have visitors, a family can tailor bedroom temperatures to individual preferences, and everyone can schedule warmer/cooler temps based on when they are home.

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