Local Homebuilder Takes the ‘LEED’ in Green Homebuilding

by Mike Hunter

Following its design and development last year of nearly 300 Phoenix-area homes that either are or will be registered with the U.S. Green Building Council with the goal of earning LEED® certification, Maracay Homes opened LEED® communities Vista at Granite Crossing in Mesa and Villages at Rio Paseo in Goodyear early this year, continuing the homebuilder’s commitment to sustainability and environmental design.

The demand for green homes has continued to grow year after year. In fact, 91 percent of buyers in the 2013 National Association of Homebuyers study “What Home Buyers Really Want” listed Energy Star®-rated homes as their most-desired feature. However, in 2016, only 10 percent of new homes built were Energy Star® rated, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. And, in 2014, just 1 percent of single-family homes were certified with LEED®, the industry standard for green development.

“Our road toward sustainable building practices began more than a decade ago when we committed to building only homes that were Energy Star® rated,” says Andy Warren, Maracay Homes president. “To date, all of our homes are Energy Star® certified, and building LEED® is just the next step in our journey to become the most sustainable homebuilder in Arizona.”

In 2017, Maracay introduced three neighborhoods containing homes with the opportunity for LEED® certification: The Preserve at Adora Trails in Gilbert, Hawthorn Manor in Chandler and Cottages at Rio Paseo in Goodyear.

LEED® Certified homes are designed to use 30 to 50 percent less energy than typical homes and include sustainability design elements such as water-efficient fixtures; LED lighting; energy-efficient heating and cooling systems; wi-fi-enabled, programmable thermostats; and more.

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