Craftsmen of Homes


Roanoke & Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia

net PLUS

There are numerous ways to achieve 'net PLUS' performance. Passive House or the DOE 'Challenge Home to Zero Net-Energy' are two. We help you explore your goals, define and document expectations, and create project requirements - all to help you get there.

Programs:  Pathways to 'net PLUS' Energy


Dept. of Energy:  Challenge Home to Zero Net-Energy

An ambitious new program launched within the Department of Energy, led by Sam Rashkin.  Program description to follow.


Earth Craft:  net-Zero Ready / Certified

An important evolution for the EarthCraft program brand, managed by Atlanta's Southface Energy Institute.  Earth Craft Home Building Program description to follow.


Passive House

Passive House Design & Passive House Building Paradigm.  Taking building energy conservation to extraordinary levels.  Program description to follow.


Energy Star

An established energy program, recently improved to 'Version 3'.  Home building to Energy Star specifications and program description to follow.


Living Building Challenge

Perhaps the most ambitious holistic set of sustainable building goals for any one master program, encompassing net-Zero and net-Positive energy.  Program description to follow.


Energy Monitoring:  Proven 'net PLUS' Performance

Beyond programs, 'net Zero' or 'net PLUS' energy performance is proven by active monitoring of energy consumption and generation. This step is important for two main reasons:

  1. it's objective and specific to your home, your site, your circumstances
  2. it influences behaviors.  Owner occupant energy usage often changes, once direct feedback of results is easy to obtain.  This is called "The Prius Effect":  the driver of energy usage becomes the controller of energy use.


the 'net PLUS' Owner: Essentials

For owners actively planning their own Passive House, net-Zero Energy House, net-Positive House, net-PLUS Energy Home. Our education courses provide you the information you need to know, to assemble a successful team of 'designer, builder, rater, and tradesmen and women'.  Many intelligent and well-meaning owners get sidetracked along the way to building their new home, by salespeople merely wanting to pad their own egos, wallets, pipelines, award trophy-cases, and industry recognition - with the owner footing the entire bill.  Get independent advice on how your project should be managed, and mastered, to ensure satisfaction of your goals.  Understand the proper roles and responsibilities of stakeholders involved on these projects. Know the logical sequence of 'what comes when', design details that could be missed, and specifications critical to defining quality and successful outcomes.

the 'net PLUS' Builder:  Education Series

For building professionals serious about taking their understanding of low-energy, high-performance, high-comfort building to the next - necessary - level.  Our two-day by two-day modular format is perfect for busy professionals who need to acquire this information, and don't have time to waste.