Wait a minute, is this a high performance home or a personalized performance home?

While the subtitle of this blog is “A Personalized Performance Home”, the first post talks a about a high performance home.

What’s the difference? Why the change?

Originally we started off on the path of building a Passive House. In April 2018, shortly after purchasing the land to build on, we engaged the services of a Certified Passive House Designer (Architect) and we were off to the races!

Initial Sketch for a Passive House Design

Through our own research, and a lot of Q&A posed to those in the know, we decided a full-on Passive Certified home would be too expensive to build. The stand out point for us was the diminishing returns of extra insulation to achieve passive standards.

So by September, 2018 we had jumped off the Passive train on to the High Performance line. However, we felt a house designed with many Passive-Leaning principles, would be in our budget. This would be a high performing home!

Some of Passive-Leaning principles include:
• Very tight construction, minimal air changes with the outside
• Passive house rated windows
• Better than code levels of insulation
• A high efficiency HVAC system
• Minimize thermal bridging
• Many Passive Design Principles

We then started to think a little more deeply about the many definitions of performance:
Comfortable, safety, healthy, superb Indoor Air Quality (IAQ), energy efficient,

Sustainable, durable, green, climate change aware, budget complying, code complying

Aligning with specific rating systems: HERS, Energy Star, Zero Energy Ready, LEED for Homes, EPA Indoor airPlus, etc

With 3o years of industry affiliations, conferences, discussions, contacts and networking, I knew too much about a variety of performance aspects to make a clear choice of one aspect.

So it got personal.

This would be our personalized performance home!

The facets we want to focus on are: an attractive house that flatters the view, a very comfortable home (great control of temperature and humidity), superb Indoor Air Quality (Carbon Dioxide (CO2) levels, odors, particulates, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), etc., low energy consumption, all electric and solar power.

And realistically, performance has to include a budget. As in order to enjoy the benefits, the house has to be affordable to be built,exist and lived in.

There you go, A Personalized Performance home!

4 thoughts on “Wait a minute, is this a high performance home or a personalized performance home?

  1. Thank you for posting your journey here. I learned about your house on your podcast (I think it was with Corbett) and became aware of your online site from Energy Star Homes, the Horrors. I’m sure that won’t apply to your house!
    I’m looking forward to following your progress and the processes you use.


  2. The only other certification I would look at would be Living Building Challenge. Not easily achievable, but like Passive House, definitely worth moving toward their standards. Were you aware of them?


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