Last week, when I received the first DTE Energy bill since finishing the upgrade to the solar panel array at my permanent model home and business office, I learned that my house - built using innovative green technologies, the latest in sustainable energy systems, the design excellence of a green-minded architect and a lot of TLC - is powerful . . . very powerful.
So powerful, in fact, that DTE owed ME money last month! Ha!
I think I'm going to frame the bill.
Since I built this home in 2007, my goal has been to get to net zero energy. We've made a lot of strides and now this 4,000 square foot shingle-style home generates more than 70 percent of its own energy needs - as well as credits from the local energy company!
It's yet another reason to love my house...AND my way of (green) building.
When it was completed in '07, my house was Michigan's very first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum-rated home and as one of the "twelve greenest homes in the nation." Since then, it has achieved even more green certifications and awards. It uses 73 percent less energy than a typical existing home its size, and generates its own energy using photovoltaic cells and saves energy using geothermal heating and cooling systems.
The update to our array added four kilowatts of photovoltaic cells to our original two. Because of it, I am less reliant on DTE Energy, specifically, and on non-renewable energy sources, in general. The upgrade reduced our already- low annual energy expenses and also made the house a great testimony to everything I believe in when it comes to building green homes in Michigan or anywhere else for that matter.
There couldn't have been a better investment, as far as I am concerned and I recommend it to you.
By making use of sustainable energy sources, you can:
- Expect savings every single month because you'll use considerably less electricity from the public utility.
- Hedge against rate hikes. I know you've been getting as frustrated as I have by unpredictable rate hikes. By generating your own free power, no more worries there!
- Protect the environment. Solar electricity comes from a clean and renewable source, the sun, and geothermal systems generate heat energy from the earth.
- Increase property value. These are smart upgrades that make your home more desirable and valuable.
Try it. Be powerful...like me. :-)