America’s first ZERO UTILITY BILL Home!
The GREAT AMERICAN DREAM HOME
America’s first ZERO UTILITY BILL Home!
Announcing the nation’s first truly affordable home with ZERO COSTS for utility bills and $100 per month income from solar energy production.
On October 25th, the official ground breaking ceremony was held at English hills subdivision in Sevierville, TN. With perfect weather, the kick off event drew a larger than expected crowd and was a great success. The event was attended by local Knoxville TV stations WVLT channel 8 a CBS affiliate and WBIR channel 10 an NBC affiliate, as well as the local Sevier County Mayor, Larry Waters. Others in attendance included were bankers, business people, realtors and many supporters. Rodney Leatherman, CEO of IBDR, explained the project and clearly defined the vision for the Great American Dream Home. Only positive things were heard about the incredible views of Mt. LeConte off in the background. Many realtors were especially excited about the combination of this unique type of home and the breathtaking views from the lot and its favorable solar orientation. All of the attendees seemed very interested, excited and enthusiastic about this new and progressive approach to stretch the current state of the housing industry.
Rodney Leatherman, CEO of a Nevada based company, says the concept of a home consistently producing more energy than it uses, is now a reality. The company has announced plans to showcase this technological break-through in the Great Smokey Mountains area of Tennessee.
The home will generate enough energy from its 10kw solar system to eliminate a utility bill—while producing income for the owner from the local utility company. Furthermore, the traditional style craftsman-cottage won’t sacrifice any modern conveniences. Leatherman say’s the company’s technology and products can easily be applied to any new construction project or even for retro-fit designs. The company offers hundreds of plans from their growing portfolio, from practical to luxurious, from first time home buyers to retirees.
In choosing a location for its first model home, the company wanted to showcase the home’s vast benefits, reflecting its positive environmental impact, sustainability and its capacity to literally pay for itself. The Great Smokey Mountains area was an obvious choice. According to the National Park Service, the area is America’s most visited destination–but with the worst air quality.
“Air pollution is shrinking scenic views by 80%, damaging plants and degrading streams and soils. The burning of fossil fuels – coal, oil and gas – causes most of the pollution”. With the area having just 55% sunny days, imagine what this home will do in areas where there is greater solar exposure. This technology will greatly improve air quality by producing clear non carbon-based energy.
Leatherman says “TVA offers some of the lowest utility rates in America. With their liberal renewable energy buyback program, it just made sense to place our first model here. According to government mandates most utility companies like TVA are required to purchase excess sustainable energy. (See www.SellClearEnergy.org for more information).
“When combining energy savings and energy generation, one of our homes will easily pay for itself in as little 18 years. Additionally, federal tax credits of up to $18,000 for qualifying homebuyers add even more return. State government tax credits may be available as well, and consumers can go to our website to learn which states offer such tax credits. (www.DropYourEnergyBill.com).
“If we could produce clear energy and cash flow for the buyers in this market, think what can be done in areas where utility rates are 50% – 100% higher and there are greater numbers of solar days–the home would pay for itself even faster.”
The company’s factory-built site-constructed home package features:
1547 sq. ft. of living space, a 2 car attached garage, 250 sq. ft. of covered porches and patios, luxury appliances, 9 ft ceilings in the master bedroom and office, and vaulted ceilings in the kitchen and great room. There will be an insulated wall system that is 19 times more load bearing than the normal 2×4 or 2×6 frames. These homes will also include stone LED fireplaces, geothermal heating/cooling systems, induction cooking, triple-glass windows & doors, foam and natural fiber insulation, LED lighting, intelligent water saving devices, a 10kw solar system and a real-time energy monitor.
The initial model home will be situated on a beautiful-view Mt. LeConte lot. The company projects a 45-65 day completion from ground breaking to move in. and the home will be priced 20% – 30% less than any comparable home on the market. It’s simplicity of construction is second-to-none and carries a price tag of just $239,000 or less than $155 per square foot.
“The technology combined with the manufacturer direct-to-consumer business model, and our company’s ability to ship to any location is how we are able to offer this incredible efficiency: clear energy production and for the first time low cost.” Leatherman says.
To validate the energy use and energy production, the company will offer a real-time monitor on its website,” Leatherman continued. “Finally, we’ve gone BEYOND GREEN…to CLEAR!”
The company utilized resources such as: California Energy Commission, Bangor Hydro Electric Company, US Department of Energy, and GE for 3rd party assessments for the energy use and energy producing items in the home. Leatherman said that after receiving hundreds of requests from customers to produce an entire energy efficient home as far back as 1999, he decided to start moving in that direction.
“We built our business by always listening to our customers”. With the lowest interest rates in decades, special financing, tax credits and a population that desires to invest in a home that gives an honest payback, we have produced exactly that. Soon, folks can touch, feel, see and be inspired by the home of the future, now.”
Leatherman began his career in 1974 in the energy efficiency sector by working in the insulation business. In the early 80’s he built the first solar panel manufacturing plant in North Carolina. In the 90’s, his experience contributed to the development of the thermal energy envelope concept.
In 2003, he was involved in Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s (ORNL) efforts to secure a federal grant on what is now called the “Zero Energy Home”. In 2007 the company’s products were used in prototype homes constructed in Texas and Oklahoma.
Leatherman, with his 38 years of experience, has led the company to the point where he can affordably, efficiently, and effectively produce more home energy than consumers actually use by means of solar. He says 20 years from now we will look back at how this home changed the construction industry’s views on sustainability and energy efficiency.
“Today, global forces dictate energy costs in America. We have the direct ability to curb their influence by limiting energy use.” Leatherman stated. “Our home is as dynamic a change for the construction industry as the hybrid and electric vehicles have been for the automotive industry. Working together we’re all part of the solution. It is my belief that this will motivate people to realize what is actually possible today.”
Leatherman says his company is developing a licensing program for its technology and that such will soon be available in all parts of the country. “Our product can be shipped factory-direct to client anywhere. This technology will soon be available for entire communities, subdivisions, community centers, schools, churches, hospitals, factories and offices.”
Additional model homes are slated in 2013 for North and South Carolina, Arizona, Colorado, Arkansas, Florida, Ohio, Missouri, Nevada, Kansas, California.