Keeping Cool in Your Florida New Home
One of the huge benefits of purchasing a new home is that they are more energy efficient than older homes. Here at Highland Homes, we include energy-efficient and money-saving features in every Florida home that we build – and, did you know Highland Homes offers upgrade options to make your home even more energy efficient?
With summer on the way, we want to share information on some of the products we build with which help keep your home cool in the summer heat. Every Highland home is built with:
• Programmable Thermostat – Allows you to schedule for less a/c to be used at different times such as when you are away from home, or sleeping, which uses less energy than maintaining a cool temperature 24/7. Forget the days of not remembering to turn the air up before you leave for the day!
• 14 SEER Energy-Efficient Heat Pump – SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) refers to the efficiency of your a/c equipment – the higher the SEER, the lower your cooling costs.
• Low E, Double Pane Windows with Tilt-In Sash. This reduces heat radiating into your home, and the tilt-in sash makes the glass easy to clean!
• Rapid Recovery 50-Gallon (min) Hot Water Heater – Uses less energy to maintain water temperature than standard units.
• Insulation – R-30 in living area ceilings, R-4.2 on exterior masonry walls, and R-11 batts between the house and garage provide a barrier against heat entering your home.
In addition, several upgrade products are available to increase your home’s efficiency. According to a recent survey from Better Homes and Gardens, Millennial homebuyers want energy efficiency products to save them at least 2 percent on their utility bills. One of the most popular upgrades at the Highland Homes Personal Selection Studio is Radiant Barrier, a product which can reduce the heating/cooling portion of your utility bill by not just 2 percent, but 8 to 12 percent, saving the average household $25 per month!
How does Radiant Barrier work?
Radiant Barrier is an insulating foil shield that reduces heat transfer through your attic and into your home. The reflective material actually reflects the heat of the sun instead of letting your roof and attic materials absorb that heat.
Radiant Barrier prevents 97 percent of radiant heat transfer which reduces your attic temperatures as much as 30 degrees. The lower attic temperature improves the performance of your ceiling insulation. In addition, the cooler your attic, the less heat will transfer into your air conditioning ducts, which improves your a/c efficiency.
Radiant Barrier is stapled to your roof trusses and installed when your home is being framed. This is a feature you definitely want to install when your home is being constructed, as it is costly to install after construction due to the added labor involved.
You may be wondering, “Well, that sounds great in the summertime, but what about the cooler winter months?” During the winter, Radiant Barrier prevents heat loss, so you will see the comfort and savings benefits in cooler months as well.
Need another reason to add Radiant Barrier when you build with Highland Homes? Silver Shield Radiant Barrier comes with a 20-year transferable warranty from Fi-Foil.
Will Radiant Barrier hurt my cell phone reception?
Typically, Radiant Barrier will not cause any problems with cell phone reception. New phones are equipped to handle commonplace interference because they are made with stronger antennas. A weak signal can be caused by a variety of factors, and if you have a weak signal, a signal booster is suggested.
How do I get Radiant Barrier?
Stacey Antonakos-Perez, Manager of the Highland Homes Personal Selection Studio, says; “Radiant Barrier adds about $8 to $12 to your monthly mortgage payment, but can save you an average of $25 a month on your electric bill. Just let us know you would like to add this option to your home when you have your design appointment!”
The Personal Selection Studio can also give you a hands-on demonstration showing the benefits of Radiant Barrier. Visit our website to learn more about designing your Florida new home at our Personal Selection Studio. If you are interested in visiting the Studio to browse the many design options we have available, call us at 863-667-4782 to schedule an appointment to start designing your dream home.
Highland Homes builds new homes throughout Central, North Central, Southwest and Tampa Bay, Florida. Browse our communities and find your new Florida home at www.HighlandHomes.org.