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Net Zero House - 4 Tips for Design & Construction

Would you like to have a $0 utility bill annually? Follow along as Matt Risinger walks through four steps to achieve net zero in your home.

Step 1: focus on design. If you set out to build a net-zero home, you will make it a lot easier to achieve in the long run.

Step 2: focus on air sealing. Air sealing makes a huge difference by not letting the external air leak into the house and keeping the nice, cool air in your house.

Step 3: insulation. In this home, Risinger shows us all the steps taken to insulate the home. It includes 2 x 6 advance framing, 3/4 inch rigid foam on the exterior walls, open-cell spray foam on the roofline to form a conditioned attic (Risinger's favorite type of attic), another two inches of rigid foam on the roof deck, and TPO roofing.

Step 4: strategic design of the mechanical system. On average, HVAC is responsible for more than 50% of your utility bills, even more in hot climates. In this house, Risinger worked with Positive Energy to design the HVAC system, which included a Mitsubishi VRF (variable refrigerant flow technology). They even added solar cells to the roof as a final bonus.

Inside, you will see they opted for a tankless water heater, which uses about 1/3 less energy than a standard electric tank system. As an added bonus, a (positive) byproduct of a tankless system is cool air, which helps keep HVAC costs down. Want to see how the four steps come together? Check out the full video.