The following was released on Wednesday, December 11, 2019:
FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) customers building new homes in 2019 exceeded the national average in energy efficiency ratings. Five Indiana homebuilders led the way in achieving energy efficiency through I&M’s New Home Construction program.
In all, the 500 area Hoosier homes participating in the I&M New Construction program were rated 40 percent more efficient than the standard.
Combined, Granite Ridge Builders, Lancia Homes, Westport Homes, Ideal Suburban Homes and Kline Custom Homes built nearly two-thirds of the 500 homes participating in the program. Combined, those homes saved more than 983,000 kiloWatt hours of energy. The energy savings for the average participating home was nearly 2,000 kWh – equivalent to the amount of energy needed to power a typical home for two months.
“Building a new home can be one of the most rewarding, exciting times of a homeowner’s life, and the New Construction program is an easy way to make living in the home more comfortable and cost-effective,” said Toby Thomas, I&M President and Chief Operating Officer. “Having a certified energy efficient home is also a good investment for the home’s future re-sale value.”
A home’s energy efficiency is measured in an audit that utilizes the independent Home Energy Rating System (HERS) developed by the Residential Energy Services Network, a non-profit corporation. I&M’s program offers incentives of $200 to $1,300 per home, depending on the level of efficiency and whether the home has electric heat. The lower the rating number, the higher the efficiency.
The average home built in 2019 under I&M’s New Construction program has a HERS rating of 60 –better than the average Indiana rating of 67 and the national average of 61.
Key contributors to a home’s rating is an energy-efficient furnace, air conditioner and/or heat pump. Other elements include smart thermostats, LED lights, quality of windows and insulation, and high efficiency showerheads that reduce the amount of heated water.
Hoosier homebuilders can learn more about the program and see how to earn incentives at ElectricIdeas.com/NewConstruction. New homes built in I&M’s Michigan service territory will become eligible for the program in 2020.
I&M customers can also find a variety of energy efficient products, rebates and tips for saving energy at homes and businesses by going to IndianaMichiganPower.com and clicking on “Save Energy.