What does “High Performance” even mean?

High Performance in Residential Building: Beyond Sustainability

In the realm of residential building, “high performance” is a term that has evolved to encompass a broad range of considerations that go beyond the traditional notion of sustainability.

Polycore wall and floor system

It represents a holistic approach to constructing and inhabiting homes that prioritize efficiency, comfort, durability, and environmental responsibility. High-performance homes are designed and constructed with meticulous attention to detail, ensuring they meet rigorous standards for energy efficiency, resource conservation, and occupant well-being.

Sustainable Building Methods and Materials

At the core of high-performance residential building are sustainable building methods and materials. This involves the use of eco-friendly construction materials, such as recycled or rapidly renewable resources, low-VOC (volatile organic compound) finishes, and energy-efficient appliances. It also emphasizes construction techniques that minimize waste, reduce energy consumption during construction, and decrease the environmental impact of the building process.

Energy Efficiency

High-performance homes are engineered to be highly energy-efficient. This means they are designed to consume less energy for heating, cooling, lighting, and appliances compared to standard homes. Key features often include superior insulation, high-performance windows, efficient HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems, and renewable energy sources like solar panels. The aim is to reduce energy consumption, lower utility bills, and decrease the home’s carbon footprint.

Indoor Air Quality and Comfort

Heat pump in Calgary

Another crucial aspect of high-performance residential building is ensuring superior indoor air quality and occupant comfort. This involves proper ventilation systems that bring in fresh air, remove indoor pollutants, and maintain a comfortable temperature and humidity level. Improved insulation and sealing also contribute to a more consistent and comfortable indoor environment.

Durability and Longevity

High-performance homes are built to last. Durable materials and construction techniques are employed to ensure that the home remains in good condition for many years, reducing the need for repairs and replacements. This not only saves money for homeowners but also minimizes the environmental impact associated with building maintenance.

Smart barrier in Calgary

Water Efficiency

Water is a valuable resource, and high-performance homes are designed to use it efficiently. Low-flow fixtures, rainwater harvesting systems, and drought-resistant landscaping are commonly integrated into these homes to reduce water consumption.

Performance Beyond Construction

High performance doesn’t end with construction. It extends into the daily life of the occupants. Homes are equipped with smart technologies that allow residents to monitor and control energy and water use, enhancing their ability to make sustainable choices.

Holistic Approach

In conclusion, high-performance residential building represents a holistic approach to creating homes that excel in multiple aspects. These homes are not only sustainable in their construction methods and resource use but also provide superior comfort, indoor air quality, and long-term durability. By emphasizing efficiency, reduced environmental impact, and occupant well-being, high-performance homes are setting a new standard for residential construction in an increasingly environmentally conscious world.

Triple pane window, exterior insulation

Whether you are measuring your energy consumption or just want to have a comfortable seat by your living room window in January, high-performance homes are simply better places to live.

Fresh Start Projects is a high-performance renovator serving Calgary, Alberta.

If you have questions about a project or any other high-performance details and products, we’re always happy to chat.