Increase Efficiency by Lowering your Home's HERS Score

Monday February 25, 2019

Every day we all strive to be efficient. At our jobs, with our personal relationships, through our hobbies and with our families, efficiency is key. What if we told you that your home was shockingly inefficient? At Lamar Smith Signature Homes, we can tell you with absolute certainty that energy efficiency is a top priority in the homes we build. In fact, our new homes have some of the best energy ratings on today’s market. According to the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) and the U.S. Department of Energy, the average resale home on today’s marketplace scores a 130, which is about double the average HERS score in a new Lamar Smith Signature Home. The lower the HERS rating, the lower your power bill.

One of the top ways homeowners and homebuyers in today’s marketplace gauge the energy efficiency of a home is through the Home Energy Rating System (HERS). The housing industry’s HERS index has often been compared to the miles-per-gallon rating people consider when buying a new car. It’s just one piece of data, but it can save buyers many times over throughout the duration of their purchase. Here are some key points the HERS index analyzes:

Here are some key takeaways:

  • The HERS index includes energy consumption that stems from heating, cooling, lights, water heating, and certain appliances.
  • Every one-point change on the HERS index represents a 1% change in energy efficiency, with lower scores meaning a better rating.
  • If the HERS index is zero (which is possible), it means the house has a net energy use of zero and that house actually produces as much energy as it uses.

However, we believe it never helps to be even more efficient. With that in mind, here are a few tips consider when trying to make your home more energy efficient:

  • How energy efficient are the floors in the unconditioned areas of your home, such as a garage?
  • Is air being lost in the attic, foundation or any crawlspaces within your home?
  • When you close your windows and doors, do they keep air both in and out? What about the vents and ductwork?
  • Do you have the most up-to-date, energy efficient water-heating system, thermostat and HVAC systems?
  • Are there any leakage points in the heating and cooling distribution system?
  • Does your home include spray foam insulation to serve as an air sealant?
  • How energy efficient are your major appliances (washer/dry, dishwasher and refrigerator)?
  • Do you replace your air filters often?
  • Do you take small steps to boost energy efficiency, such as using compact fluorescent bulbs?

By doing what you can to ensure these issues are sealed up (literally), you can significantly lower your power bill. The other option? Buy a new home from Lamar Smith Signature Homes and relax knowing you don’t have to worry about energy efficiency!

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