Copyright (c) 2015 en-us Fine Homebuilding - "News" blog entries Fine Homebuilding - "News" blog entries Tue, 27 Jan 2015 08:09:18 -0500 Fine Homebuilding - "News" blog entries Fine Homebuilding - "News" blog entries <![CDATA[Wisconsin Tightens Net-Metering Rules]]> Mon, 26 Jan 2015 11:02:36 -0500 Wisconsin Tightens Net-Metering Rules Posted by ScottG
Regulators permit utilities to settle accounts monthly rather than annually, and pay the wholesale rather than the retail rate. Existing customers are grandfathered for 10 years. ]]>
<![CDATA[Ontario to Yank Some Smart Meters]]> Fri, 23 Jan 2015 16:38:30 -0500 Ontario to Yank Some Smart Meters Posted by ScottG
The order affects only a small percentage of the millions of meters that have been installed. In Maine, critics appeal a ruling that the meters are safe. ]]>
<![CDATA[Hawaii Tinkers With Its Solar Formula]]> Thu, 22 Jan 2015 15:18:57 -0500 Hawaii Tinkers With Its Solar Formula Posted by ScottG
A utility on Kauai turns to lithium-ion batteries after its first try with lead-acid batteries fails to meet expectations. Another Hawaiian utility tweaks its net-metering rules. ]]>
<![CDATA[The Internet of Things Takes Center Stage]]> Thu, 22 Jan 2015 11:33:30 -0500 The Internet of Things Takes Center Stage Posted by ScottG
Interconnected devices for the home are getting a lot of attention at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. ]]>
<![CDATA[Study Finds Solar Panels Add Value to Houses]]> Thu, 15 Jan 2015 17:03:55 -0500 Study Finds Solar Panels Add Value to Houses Posted by ScottG
Researchers looking at sales records of nearly 23,000 homes have concluded that buyers are willing to pay $15,000 more for a house with an average-size photovoltaic system. ]]>
<![CDATA[One Full Year, Eight Building Permits]]> Thu, 15 Jan 2015 10:34:43 -0500 One Full Year, Eight Building Permits Posted by ScottG
In Maine's southernmost town, plan on spending a couple of days in line if you want to be sure of snagging a building permit. ]]>
<![CDATA[House Members Ask for More Scrutiny of Solar Leases]]> Wed, 14 Jan 2015 16:02:49 -0500 House Members Ask for More Scrutiny of Solar Leases Posted by ScottG
Separate groups of representatives have approached two federal agencies with questions about sales pitches from solar leasing companies. Are consumers getting a square deal? ]]>
<![CDATA[Upping the Energy-Star Ante]]> Mon, 12 Jan 2015 15:31:17 -0500 Upping the Energy-Star Ante Posted by ScottG
The Department of Energy hopes to see a 5% market share for zero-energy-ready homes by the year 2020. ]]>
<![CDATA[FLIR Updates Its Thermal Imager]]> Fri, 09 Jan 2015 15:23:17 -0500 FLIR Updates Its Thermal Imager Posted by ScottG
A new model, available later this year, will work with either Apple or Android devices. The price has not been announced. ]]>
<![CDATA[Honeywell Begins Production of a New Refrigerant With a Lower Environmental Impact]]> Wed, 07 Jan 2015 14:47:05 -0500 Honeywell Begins Production of a New Refrigerant With a Lower Environmental Impact Posted by ScottG
The company says the new insulating agent and refrigerant has a drastically lower global-warming potential than industry standards. ]]>
<![CDATA[Report: Tougher Energy Codes Don't Lower Consumption]]> Wed, 07 Jan 2015 14:14:09 -0500 Report: Tougher Energy Codes Don't Lower Consumption Posted by ScottG
A researcher finds strict building codes in California have failed to lower energy consumption while adding thousands to construction costs ]]>
<![CDATA[EPA Warns of Radon Hazards]]> Tue, 06 Jan 2015 14:02:01 -0500 EPA Warns of Radon Hazards Posted by ScottG
Warning that radon kills thousands of people annually, the government agency urges more people to test their homes ]]>
<![CDATA[Older Americans and the Smart Grid]]> Tue, 06 Jan 2015 13:16:52 -0500 Older Americans and the Smart Grid Posted by ScottG
Researchers explore how age affects attitudes about a more interactive electric grid: saving money vs. saving energy ]]>
<![CDATA[Wind Farm Leaves Property Values Unscathed]]> Mon, 29 Dec 2014 14:24:07 -0500 Wind Farm Leaves Property Values Unscathed Posted by ScottG
In one recent study, researchers in Canada reviewed more than 7000 property sales before arriving at their conclusion ]]>
<![CDATA[New Tariffs Imposed on Chinese Solar Panels]]> Mon, 29 Dec 2014 14:18:59 -0500 New Tariffs Imposed on Chinese Solar Panels Posted by ScottG
Duties are intended to protect U.S. panel manufacturers from unfair trade practices, but not everyone in the solar industry is cheering ]]>
<![CDATA[Houses by Northwest Builder Win Awards]]> Tue, 16 Dec 2014 10:22:58 -0500 Houses by Northwest Builder Win Awards Posted by ScottG
Details make the difference, and videos posted by Hammer & Hand show how high-performance houses are put together. ]]>
<![CDATA[Reviving Old Masonry Buildings]]> Mon, 15 Dec 2014 14:53:45 -0500 Reviving Old Masonry Buildings Posted by ScottG
A new online book offers details on how to bring historic masonry buildings up to modern efficiency standards without ruining their character. ]]>
<![CDATA[California City Pushes Water Recycling]]> Mon, 15 Dec 2014 12:12:15 -0500 California City Pushes Water Recycling Posted by ScottG
In Lancaster, all new houses will be required to have "recycle-ready" plumbing systems beginning in 2015 ]]>
<![CDATA[The Case for West-Facing Solar Panels]]> Mon, 15 Dec 2014 10:47:09 -0500 The Case for West-Facing Solar Panels Posted by ScottG
An analysis of thousands of solar homes shows output peaks hours before utilities could really use it ]]>
<![CDATA[Passivhaus Hits a Big Milestone]]> Mon, 15 Dec 2014 10:31:02 -0500 Passivhaus Hits a Big Milestone Posted by ScottG
The German-based Passivhaus Institut says there are now 1 million square meters of certified space on the planet ]]>