Home Builders Commitment to Energy Efficient Homes

by : Richard Soto

A hot job market, low unemployment rates and climbing home values have made the San Antonio area a popular destination for new home builders focused on energy efficiency. Realty Times reports that from January 2007 to January 2008, San Antonio has seen unemployment rates dip to just 4%, thanks to the addition of nearly 15,000 jobs.

In that same period, housing prices increased 6%, which is almost as impressive as the fact that house prices have increased steadily since 2004 (with the exception of a slight dip in the third quarter of 2006). Realty Times also reports that the median home price in the San Antonio area, which was $123,000 just a year ago, now stands at $155,000.

The formula is a no-brainer for new home builders: job growth plus rising house values equals a prime opportunity. San Antonio home builders understand the needs and concerns of today's homeowners, including concerns over the high cost of utilities. Homes built with energy efficient features are taking center stage and attracting new home buyers at an impressive rate.

The single family homes of the Woods of Frederick Creek, for example, located in historic Boerne and built by Armadillo Homes, are all Energy Star Certified and include such amenities as programmable thermostats, insulated, low E-2 glass windows, energy saving water heaters and water conserving commodes. The Woods of Frederick Creek, which are priced from $202,490 to $241,490, feature one and two-story homes from 1,953 to 3,263 square feet.

Medallion Homes, the builder for three, new home communities in San Antonio, The Hills at Alamo Ranch, The Summit at Alamo Ranch and Panther Creek, is a 100% Energy Star Builder which means that their homes are inspected by third-party, energy efficient experts to ensure that they meet the EPA's strict, energy efficient guidelines. In fact, Medallion Homes, in an effort to prove just how energy efficient their homes are, has begun a promotion which pays the electric and gas bills for its new homeowners for three years.

The Hills at Alamo Ranch features one and two-story, single family homes from 1,718 to 3,403 square feet and range in price from $194,200 to $316,600. The Summit at Alamo Ranch also features one and two-story, single family homes from 1,752 to 4,157 square feet. Prices range from $231,000 to $326,200. Panther Creek features one and two-story homes which range from 1,423 to 3,403 square feet and are priced from $184,600 to $278,800.

Centex Homes, the builder for several, new home communities throughout the San Antonio area, including the new community of Turnberry at Bulverde Village, focuses on several areas when building their energy efficient homes. These include energy efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, premium, fiberglass insulation, high performance windows, sealing to reduce air leakage, tight ducts and Energy Star Appliances.

Turnberry at Bulverde Village features one and two-story homes which range in price from the $160s to the $220s.

With the current focus on global warming and the high cost of natural gas, San Antonio's new home buyers will continue to seek builders who show a commitment to using energy efficient building products. And those builders are sure to reap the benefits.