Benefits of ENERGY STAR, DOE Zero Energy Ready and EPA Indoor airPLUS Third-Party Certified Homes

Custom Home Building in Durango with Energy StarWe are proud to offer new homes that have earned the ENERGY STAR® label. ENERGY STAR qualified homes are independently verified by a third-party Home Energy Rater to ensure they meet ENERGY STAR energy efficiency guidelines. These homes are better for the environment and better for you.


  • EPA Indoor Air Quality for homesHeat Recovery Ventilation systems are installed to ensure the air you breath is fresh, filtered and in constant circulation.  This is essential in a tightly built home. 
  • Ensure proper ventilation and duct runs at kitchens and baths with ENERGY STAR fans.
  • Proper separation of combustion exhaust from within the living space by using direct vent fireplaces and tank less water heaters.
  • Garage ventilation system to remove car exhaust, with an airtight seal from the home.
  • A home built to ENERGY STAR standards will use far less energy than a standard “code” home.
  • Mantell-Hecathorn Certified homes typically use a minimum of 30% less energy
  • Independent third party inspection and testing of insulation quality, and sealed duct systems. Ducts tested for less than 5% leakage compared to typical home duct leakage of 25%.
  • Blower door test for airtight construction <2 ACH, which is equivalent to a 8"x8" hole. A typical home has air leakage equivalent to a 3'x3' hole.
  • No drafts = comfortable home
  • We use spray foam and blown-in fiberglass insulation, for our minimum R-60 ceilings, R-30 floors, and R-25 to R-42 walls, R-20 foundation; sealed crawlspace and building envelope.
  • ENERGY STAR windows (typically triple pane) save energy and provide more UV protection, U-value of <.30
  • ENERGY STAR appliances achieve greater efficiency in energy and water use
  • ENERGY STAR HVAC system provides quality and efficiency; 95% efficiency standard
  • Sealed duct work, third-party tested
  • Engineered and kiln-dried lumber is stronger and more stable
  • 50 year roof material for longevity and reliability
  • Radiant Floor Heating systems with a 96% efficient boiler
  • Light fixtures that conform to Energy Star standards
  • Photovoltaic panels to offset heating or electrical use - optional
  • Passive solar design incorporated when possible to help reduce heat load
  • The benefits of Certified E-Star and DOE Net Zero Ready homes extend well beyond the immediate attributes of a healthier living environment.  Homeowner awareness of the desirability of a home built with green building techniques and quality will continue to grow in the future, and the resale value of those green-built homes will be enhanced well beyond the homes built without a green rating.  The Colorado MLS now includes fields for green ratings, and requires 3rd party verified information on a home’s Certification and HERS rating
  • Third party certification requires a project to be independently tested and documented for energy efficiency and healthier, more durable construction materials, rather than just relying on a builder’s word.  Our Mesa Verde Passive Solar custom home was third-party tested and earned the highest level of Emerald in the NAHB Green Standard Program and was tested to have a HERS rating of 28, which will translate into a cost savings of 72%!  The custom home we completed in November 2011 was ENERGY STAR certified and the second M-H home in Southwest Colorado to attain a Gold Level in the NAHB Green Standard Program.  The home received a HERS score of 61, which means a cost savings of 39%, and earned this exemplary rating without using photovoltaics or other alternative energy sources.