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Energy Efficient, Automated Homes Ease Ownership

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the avanti group, energy efficient, automated homes ease ownership


Think about your long commute, the hours spent on home improvements — the countless things you do to make your house a home. Wouldn’t it be great to make your house work for you?


Technology and building advances are making it easier for homeowners to save money, energy and time- time that can be spent enjoying their homes.


“Our primary focus is on saving energy, because it directly relates to saving money, which is important to our customers,” said Steven Rieger, vice president of Rieger Homes.


The builders, based in Newburgh, use techniques to reduce leakage and make ductwork more efficient, as well as installing energy-efficient equipment such as furnaces, boilers and windows.


The company, which was formed in 1960 and serves Dutchess, Ulster and Orange counties, uses specialized testing to locate miniscule leaks in doors and windows — small enough to not be seen, but big enough to make a difference in energy usage, Rieger said.



The company also installs HVAC ducts in insulated spaces rather than in attics, which can get too hot or too cold and make the ducts work harder to allow air flow.


“We drop it down below the insulation so in winter, it’s not in a 40-degree attic or in a 90-degree attic in summer,” Rieger said. “It makes it much more energy efficient.”


Rieger Homes also has changed the way it builds the frames of new homes, reducing the amount of non-structural wood and replacing it with foam or cellulose insulation. Fiberglass insulation works best in a place that is enclosed on all sides, Rieger said, but spray foam insulation works better in other areas, such as where the framing meets the foundation.


“Most people want a quality energy package without spending extra money,” Rieger said, and while that upfront expense may not seem as important as hardwood flooring or cabinetry, the “stuff behind the Sheetrock” will save money in the long run.


“If your highest concern is your cost of occupancy, you’d be better to spend on the front-end structure than on a Sub-Zero refrigerator or granite countertops,” Rieger said. “You can have something beautiful and cost-effective. We try to have both.”





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