When discussing cutting energy consumption, but still staying cool in the hot summer months in Arizona, Jan tells her clients to first get an energy audit. "That's going to be a whole system approach to looking at every facet of your home.” The energy audit will check "insulation, windows, the efficiency of appliances, things like that, especially your HVAC system," explained Jan in the Taking Action part of ABC15 morning news. Jan explained that when it comes to a home’s electric bill, changing incandescent light bulbs to LED or CFL bulbs is the quickest return on investment.
Jan recently bought a 1,500 square foot home built in 1979. When she purchased the home, the average energy bill was $250 a month. After Jan renovated her home with energy efficiency in mind, her bill now averages just $77 a month! Based on the results of her energy audit, Jan’s upgrade included exceptional attic insulation, ENERGY STAR windows, an energy efficient heat pump (SEER 16), energy efficient lighting, and all ENERGY STAR appliances. These features earned the home a Gold certification from Pearl.
Pearl’s high-performing home certification system looks at four areas of the home. The BUILDING SHELL (includes insulation, air sealing, windows, doors, and roofing), HEATING & COOLING (includes home heating and cooling equipment and the duct system that carries the conditioned air), BASELOAD (includes water heaters, appliances, lighting, and ventilation) and HOME MANAGEMENT (includes smart thermostats, lighting and HVAC controls, and more). Pearl makes these “invisible” high-performing assets, visible by featuring each of them in it’s Pearl Certification Report.
Homes earn points for each high-performing feature. If they have enough points, they qualify for Pearl’s Silver, Gold, or Platinum levels.
Jan had her home Pearl Certified by Jonathan Waterworth of Southwest Sustainable Structures Inc. a Pearl certifying contractor. She’s delighted to be the first Pearl Gold Certified homeowner in Arizona. "It's a certification process; it's a points based system and it's third party verified so it adds value at the point of sale," explained Jan. "I understand the value that high-performing, energy efficient homes bring to the market. The missing link is getting relevant information about those homes to agents and appraisers, who are not building scientists. Pearl provides that missing link."
In addition to being a Pearl Certified Gold homeowner, Jan is also a HomeSmart Agent. HomeSmart Arizona recently joined the prestigious Pearl Broker Advantage Program.
HomeSmart agents like Jan receive training on identifying, valuing, and marketing high-performing homes. These are homes with energy efficient and renewable energy features that make the home more affordable, comfortable, and healthier to live in. As Pearl Partners, HomeSmart agents can also offer a discounted Pearl Certification Report to sellers and payment for the certification at time of closing.
Pearl’s Certification Reports include a detailed report of the home’s high-performing features, an Appraisal Addendum, and a full-color print and online marketing package. While Jan enjoys the improved comfort and energy efficiency of her home, Pearl provides a Pearl Certification Report highlighting the added value to her home. Homes that are marketed as Pearl Certified homes sell for 5% more on average.