We recently attended the 14th Annual North American Passive House Conference in Washington DC. The conference had exciting keynote speakers and breakout sessions about high-performance construction. At the end of the conference, we toured other Passive House projects and then spent several days taking the class to become Certified Passive House Builders.
We went knowing we would learn about passive house construction, but we did not realize how excited we would become about instituting the principles of high-performance Passive House construction in our own building projects.
In construction, there is almost always a way to build something stronger/better/nicer. Everyone wants to build high quality, but that’s not always easy to define. There is a constant struggle to find the right balance between quality, cost, and time. How good is good enough? Everyone has a different answer!
Being in this environment and learning Passive House is so exciting to us because there are a lot of talented & experienced professionals from across the country who have been working together to help answer that question, and explain why.
When we build to the performance standards of Passive House, we end up with homes that are dramatically better in a number of areas:
- Passive Building construction aims for the best balance of long term financial payback vs initial investment in higher performance construction. Studies have shown that over the course of a mortgage, the total cost of ownership for a Passive House is $10s of thousands of dollars less than a conventional home
- Passive Houses deliver superb indoor air quality, which in turn provides a much healthier living environment for its occupants.
- Airtight construction and insulation provide amazing comfort even in extreme weather.
- Passive buildings are much more durable and resilient. They are expected to last longer with less upkeep than a code-minimum home.
- Passive Houses use dramatically less energy, which greatly reduces both their energy costs & environmental impact for the life of the structure. The decision to make improvements now can help the environment and an owner’s wallet for many decades to come!
We have so much more to share about Passive House construction as we dive into implementing these principlals in our building projects. Our first project is a new home that we are using one of the practicies learned at the conference called Eco Sealing. We will share more on this very soon.