Hawkins House is perhaps the greenest certified home in Nova Scotia. Being built by designer/builder Natalie Leonard, the home has now received both Passive House certification and LEED® Canada for Homes Gold certification.

By achieving the German Passive House standard the heating costs were estimated at $200/year. This is achieved by conserving energy rather than generating energy with renewable technologies which are expensive to install and maintain. This approach makes the home’s construction affordable by eliminating the need for a furnace and central heating system. Instead of spending money on expensive technology dollars can be spent on insulation, which is relatively maintenance free. First year monitoring data shows the home’s energy use is on target.

This project is certified by the Canada Green Building Council with LEED for Homes Gold certification, which includes third party verified green building strategies for energy efficiency, superior indoor air quality, sustainable site practices, using local and recycled materials, construction waste reduction, and water use reduction.

Passive House and LEED for Homes certification compliment each other nicely.  Passive House is the most ambitious energy conservation standard for buildings. LEED for Homes verifies the construction of the home is environmentally responsible by offering third-party verification of broader green strategies, including energy efficiency.

What is most impressive is that all of this green doesn’t compromise the style of the house or the quality of the finishes. One of the myths Natalie wants to disprove with this demonstration project is “that energy efficient, green homes don’t have to look like a spaceship crashed into the side of mountain.” Any style house can be energy efficient and green. Natalie has chosen to build a one-storey, open-concept bungalow, which is a more challenging shape than a standard two-storey house.

For information about the project, Natalie can be reached at:  natalie@passivedesign.ca or by phone: 902-475-1060.