BPI: Performance Matters Newsletter
A new building science mega-resource center
Home performance pros seeking "fast, free and reliable building science knowledge" may wish to carve out some time for the Building American Solution Center, a new resource launched by the U.S. Department of Energy in January. This massive online database gathers recommendations from top building-science experts, along with hundreds of guides, images, CAD files and case studies on topics from insulating and air-sealing attic knee walls to whole-house performance.
Big plans for national energy savings
2012 was a boom year for the energy industry, but all that growth points to an intensifying need to reduce energy use. Two national-level energy conservation initiatives have recently rolled out, including:
- Advancing Healthy Housing -- a Strategy for Action, unveiled by several federal agencies.
- This analysis from the Alliance Commission on National Energy Efficiency Policy
Public support for such efforts appears to be rising. A new poll from Duke University shows that 64 percent of Americans favor regulating greenhouse gas emissions, and half of Americans are (finally) convinced the climate is changing.
Don't try these in clients' homes
- Green remodeling expert Carl Seville dislikes batt insulation so much that he proposed outlawing it in 2010. Last week he revisited this pet peeve with the case that most installers of batt insulation are poorly trained.
- A popular winter home-performance DIY project involves putting foam gaskets behind electrical switch and outlet covers. Too bad they "do next to nothing about the holes in the switches and receptacles," writes Allison Bailes on his blog.
How to sell your work
- In Home Energy magazine's "Selling Energy Conservation: the Art of Educating, Listening, Partnership, and Flexibility," Minneapolis-based green designer Cynthia Ojczyk draws from four remodeling projects to demonstrate how to educate sometimes wary and misinformed homeowners on the benefits of investing in home-performance improvements.
- How fresh is your website content? EnergyCircle has posted a number of useful "SEO Quick-Tips" for the websites of home performance contractors who want search engines to find their sites. Good ideas here, along with a link to a free downloadable white paper.
- Know your target market, partner with utilities offering rebates, and have a well-rounded marketing collateral program! These are among the marketing tips provided by pros in this discussion on Home Energy Pros.