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Sustainable Building Practices for the Net Zero ICONIC Home

Net Zero
With environmental sustainability as a key factor for the Net Zero ICONIC Home, we talked about the strategy behind sustainable building with Brad Leavitt of AFT Construction.

The Net Zero ICONIC Home is a sustainable, net-zero energy building design that produces at least as much renewable energy as it consumes on an annual basis. Brad Leavitt, President of AFT Construction, was selected to build the Net Zero ICONIC Home, bringing with him an impressive background in exceptional construction and a desire to promote sustainable building practices.

“When we were starting to design, a big thing was understanding all the concepts of net zero,” Leavitt says.

A net zero home is a lot like any elegant custom home—only better—better for the residents, better for environmental sustainability and better for the planet. A net zero home is so airtight, well insulated and energy efficient that it produces as much renewable energy as it consumes annually. Plus, design decisions made inside allow for temperature management with minimal energy, water conservation, air purification, healthy natural light exposure and sustainable, natural, healthy interiors and products in the home.

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Net Zero

“When we were starting to design, a big thing was understanding all the concepts of net zero,” Leavitt says.

“We worked with K & Q Interiors on the interior design, our architect was Cosan Studio, Scott Carson, and so you can see that we tried to source locally, and that’s a big part to sustainability,” Leavitt says. “If you think about the the carbon footprint when things ship across the world or country, trying to keep things local was really important.”

In addition to sourcing locally, Leavitt built the house to last using concrete exterior walls.

“This home will definitely last beyond one hundred years, much longer than a wood-framed house,” Leavitt says. “The reason being, with a wood-framed house you’re going to have deterioration, there could be challenges overtime depending on the construction and type but when you’re building with concrete exterior walls, there’s a lot of sturdiness and strength to that.” 

Net Zero

“This is something that it’s a lot more difficult to remodel, but for a home that’s going to be sustainable and last, this one will be here for a very long time, a lot longer than most of the neighbors will. Which is another good thing for the environment, because we have less weight building and ripping it back down and we all know in the US we’re pretty wasteful with remodels and you have to account for that,” he added.

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The good news is that building a net zero energy home is becoming more and more cost effective. It’s important to go into the build with a solid plan from the very beginning, which requires making strategic, conscious decisions that further the sustainable building, net zero design goal. 

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