Pre-fab home comes with lifetime of free energy
Until recently, there's been a persistent myth that homes that were energy efficient and combined with renewable energy were more expensive than conventional homes. Acre, a company based in Kansas City, is about to bust this myth wide open.
Using a crowd-funded campaign on IndieGogo, Acre is pioneering an innovative net zero energy pre-fab design home. The prototype of the home is being built in the same neighborhood where Google launched it's hyper-fast Google Fiber internet service. Innovation is nothing new to the Kansas City Startup Village, home to many entrepreneurial startups.
For a rock-bottom $135 per square foot for construction costs, the home comes with a lifetime of free energy. That's right, this revolutionary home is Net Zero Energy, meaning the homes are designed to produce more energy via rooftop solar than the homeowners are expected to consume on a net annual basis. If all goes as planned, the owners will receive zero dollar energy bills. This comes at a cost on par with a conventionally built home.
The home is beautifully designed and full of all the latest smart-home technology to improve the user experience and comfort, as well as drive down energy usage.
For years I've argued that any new home that is not built to net zero energy standards will be obsolete by 2020. They are mistakes that will need to be prematurely retrofit to adapt to the post-fossil fuel economy. The Acre project is another step in the right direction.
If you look at the true cost of a home, it should include construction, interest, as well as operating costs and energy. As with most net zero energy homes, the Acre home crushes conventional building in affordability. Acre claims that by accelerating your mortgage payoff with the energy savings, you'll save $300,000 on Utilities & Interest over the span of a typical 30-year mortgage.
Acre is working from the premise that American home design is inefficient, expensive, and old. Traditional homes lack the latest technology and are not built for the future. But, net zero energy homes are built with the future in mind. The homes come standard with full home automation of everything from heating and cooling to shading to lighting . . . . and even mowing.
The house is a four bedroom, four bath home with an optimally designed, responsive floor plan in only 1800 sq.ft. The passive solar design makes it exceptionally cozy and comfortable with the benefit of low energy. The zero cost energy model at an affordable price makes this project a game-changer.
Now . . . if we can only find a company that can figure out an affordable pre-fab net zero energy retrofit of the remaining 120 million existing homes, then we're in business.
Check out Acre's IndieGogo campaign here.
Images via Acre