The cost of energy is rising rapidly — and not just in
dollars. Our environment is also paying the price: non-renewable energy
consumption, carbon emissions, and pollution. In the U.S., 39% of all
greenhouse gas emissions come from buildings.
We use energy — electricity, gas, and water — to keep our
houses at a comfortable temperature, our showers hot, our lights on, and our
gardens green, all of which generates carbon dioxide (CO2). Your carbon
footprint is the sum of all emissions of CO2, which are induced by
your activities in a given time frame.
High-performance homes support...
We're honored to be featured in Home Builder Digest as the second best custom home builder in San Jose. Of the fifteen builders represented, we are one of only two with expertise in passive home building. Check out the article to learn more:
At Clarum Homes, we can answer your all of your questions with the greatest confidence. Give us a call at 650.322.7069 today to learn more about our custom home building services.
You know you want
to build a new custom home and you know where you want to build it. Now it’s
time to pick a builder. What to look for exactly? These ten questions will help
you better understand their operation, level of experience, and history in the
1. How long have you been building in Silicon Valley?
Hiring a custom home builder is similar to hiring a team of
long-term employees. You should review their work history, skills, and years of
experience. A deep understanding of the local area can make a big difference in
moving your project forward.
2. Can you give...
At Clarum, we work with families to leverage Passive House home building practices for extreme performance opportunities in their custom home building projects. A Passive-Certified home is one that employs a set of advanced building technologies to achieve extreme energy efficiency. Energy consumption is reduced by up to 90% compared to a conventionally-built home.
The History of Passive Homes
The Passivhaus house concept originated in 1988 with a conversation
between Professors Bo Adamson of Lund University, Sweden and Wolfgang Feist of
the Institute for Housing and the Environment,...
When you’re planning to build a new custom home, it’s easy to focus on upfront expenses and costs of construction without thinking about ongoing costs once the home is built. These operating costs of your home are equally important and have huge effects on the lifetime return on your investment.
Higher energy efficiencies lead to higher home values.
Meet the Average family
Mr. and Mrs. Average built a conventional 3,500 square-foot home in a northern California neighborhood where they pay about $130/month for their electricity, which is the average for California residents. The cost to build...
The average American spends 90% of their time indoors, and air pollution levels inside the average new home are 2 to 5 times worse than the air pollution levels outside. These statistics are especially concerning as the weather gets colder: because we tend to stay indoors more often, pollutants can have an even greater impact on health. Plus, for those who suffer from allergies or asthma, unhealthy indoor air can trigger attacks.
Immediate effects of exposure to indoor pollutants include irritation of the eyes, nose and throat, headaches, dizziness, and fatigue. Other health effects including...
When an architect, designer, and builder set out with the intention of building a high-performance home, they often determine a sustainability goal based on an established certification program. These third-party certification programs define the parameters and expectations of the custom home’s ongoing energy savings. They include suggested materials, recommend efficiency engineering practices and can demand applied environmental quality controls.
There are some popular and emerging high-performance home certification programs on the market today. Homeowners are increasingly familiar with...
If you're considering building a new custom home, there has never been a better time to take the benefits of passive home construction to heart. Climate change, rising energy costs and a greater awareness of our impact on the earth leads us to question our traditional methods of home construction. For those striving to reduce energy costs, and their carbon footprint, passive home construction is becoming increasingly attractive – and viable.
The inventory of passive-certified homes is growing in the US [Fig 1], with certifications more than doubling in 2017 over the previous year. By the end of 2017...
It's summer! Fresh breezes are blowing through the open windows and clearing out all those indoor air pollutants that built up over the winter months, right? Only, maybe not. If you’re in a traditionally heated and cooled home in California, you’re probably cranking up the air conditioning right about now. Worse, you’re keeping the doors and windows firmly closed against California’s terrible smog and wildfire season.
Unfortunately, summer months can have a worsening effect on indoor air quality if you're using an AC unit. Beating the summer heat with air conditioning causes high...
When you build a custom home to high-performance or passive home standards, one of the primary objectives is to lower the home’s heating and cooling costs. In traditional construction, heat loss through your walls, roof, and windows can drive up your heating bill. It might surprise you to learn that most heat loss is through the walls – about 35 percent! And, even though warm air rises, you're losing ten percent more heat through your walls than out your roof. The opposite holds true when temperatures outside are hot. A standard home will absorb heat through the walls at higher rates, even...