Home Innovation Insights

Insider insights on what's going on in the home building industry.

Browse
Archive
Ed Hudson, MBA
January 25, 2019

Education & Training Key to Overcoming Builder Challenges With Energy Codes

Two weeks ago, I blogged about a summary of findings to a builder survey, where more than 250 write-in responses to the question, “What are your biggest challenges in constructing homes to meet current energy codes?” were received.

Responses varied widely. In an attempt to summarize the breadth of responses, I would say they indicated that building more energy-efficient homes means the home building industry has to change, and change can be painful — particularly painful when the industry is producing at near capacity, labor and materials costs are rising, and both management and jobsite labor are in short supply. The 85% of respondents who indicated having challenges seemed to convey that the fast pace of building code changes is disrupting the design and construction of homes, and they are trying to sort things out.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Vladimir Kochkin
October 12, 2018

It’ll Cost You! Where Codes Meet Costs

There are lots of passionate individuals and companies in our industry who are working to bring about positive change. Whether developing a new product, testing a new construction technique/method, introducing a new building code provision, or advocating for a new industry policy, cost is always a factor that needs to be considered on the road to innovation. Cost can be the factor that stops a great idea from going forward.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Chris Crowell
August 27, 2018

Shadow Costs: How Outdated Local Processes Stifle the True Solar Market

While PV technology has made considerable gains in terms of cost reduction and increased efficiency over the last decade, often the bureaucracy surrounding it has not. Government often gets credit for growing the solar market through subsidies, but this ignores regulatory hurdles in the way of project completion such as old timey zoning laws, overly burdensome permitting practices, and time-consuming interconnection policies. All of that sticky red tape can stifle PV growth. Check out this guest post from Solar Builder magazine to find out what's being done to overcome these obstacles.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Patricia Gunderson, P.E.
January 27, 2017

SolSmart Serves Up Soft Cost Savings

Soft costs can often be a deal-breaker for solar installation. DOE's SolSmart is helping builders and developers overcome barriers to solar in residential construction that can often come from arduous local zoning, permitting, and inspection requirements. Find out more about the program and how it can help in your community.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Bob Burns
October 14, 2016

Pivotal Advance in Green Building Valuation

Home Innovation Research Labs recently announced a data sharing agreement with my company, Pivotal Energy Solutions. The announcement may have seemed inconsequential at the time, but I’m convinced that what this agreement represents is a critical next step in the marketing of energy-efficient homes and has potential to impact your business in a BIG way.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Patricia Gunderson, P.E.
August 15, 2016

Streamlined Permitting for PV? Yes, Please!

DOE's SolSmart is helping builders and developers overcome the barriers to solar in residential construction that can often come from arduous local zoning, permitting, and inspection requirements. Find out more about this new program and how it can help in your community.

comments (1)

Continue Reading


Cindy Wasser
May 1, 2015

An NGBS Retrospective: 50,000 NGBS Green Certified Homes

With the 50,000th NGBS Green Certified home in our very recent past, it seemed like a perfect time to look back on what a game-changer the NGBS rating system has been to the home building industry, and celebrate the achievements of our dedicated NGBS Green Partners who have sought third-party green home certification.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Mark Garner
February 12, 2015

Don’t Go It Alone: Verifiers Can Help Avoid Scheduling Issues, Costly Damages

One of the most important aspects of multifamily construction is scheduling. If done properly, it can save the owner and the general contractor a lot of time, money, and frustration. But all too often, this process is not monitored closely enough. In large multi-million-dollar projects, the smallest mistakes in construction sequencing can be devastating to the project by causing costly delays, damages, and legal actions. NGBS Green Verifiers can help you plan so that a small error in scheduling doesn't result in a major catastrophe in your green building.

comments (0)

Continue Reading


Michelle Foster
January 29, 2015

NGBS Bronze Cookbook: Your Winning Recipe for Green Home Building

Despite green building experts’ declarations to the contrary, a truly high-performance, green home is not always easy for builders to design and construct, and there are always additional costs involved as compared to building a code-minimum home. These are facts. But we do all that we can to make the process easier and more affordable for builders, so that more builders will build green homes and verify performance with independent, third-party verification.

comments (1)

Continue Reading


Hayley King
December 26, 2014

Delivering Green for Those Defending the Red, White, and Blue

In light of the recent approval by Congress of the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), and specific recognition of the National Green Building Standard (NGBS) in that legislation, Balfour Beatty's Hayley King discusses how the NGBS can work well for military housing and the land on which it’s developed.

comments (0)

Continue Reading