All Press Releases for September 23, 2011

Sunstone Homes Unveils First Affordable Net Zero Attainable Home in City of Tampa; City of Tampa Officials Laud Importance of Attainable Green Housing in Urban Areas

Tampa Bay based Sunstone Homes unveiled its first Net Zero Attainable home on Wednesday with a new owner ceremony attended by several civic leaders and associated colleagues in support of efficient, sustainable development and building practices.

    TAMPA, FL, September 23, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Tampa Bay based Sunstone Homes unveiled its first Net Zero Attainable home on Wednesday in a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by civic leaders and associated colleagues. The owners of Sunstone Homes, Brian Lamb and Joe Gibbons, are offering affordable, sustainable homes on several lots throughout the Tampa Bay region.

A Net-Zero attainable house has the capability to be independent from the energy grid supply. Energy can be harvested on site, resulting in zero net energy consumption and zero carbon emissions annually. The Sunstone Homes house is especially advantageous for consumers susceptible to future energy price increases, loss of electricity due to hurricanes and other threats, and those buyers interested in sustainability.

Lamb, CEO of Sunstone's parent company Meritus Corp, moderated the event located at the new home located in West Tampa. Discussion was held with the fifty-plus attendees regarding the importance of accommodating new attainable housing within urban areas. Thom Greene, City of Tampa's Green Officer outlined the future needs and goals of the City in sustainable building and development practices, while Don Sharp, with Sharp Design, discussed how this model maintains historic community character. Several attractive lots are available with Sunstone Homes for redevelopment and will allow for efficient, sustainable development.

Mr. Lamb explained how Sunstone Homes provided affordability to buyers with the availability to grow the commitment to Net Zero when buyers are ready. In all models, the base Green level ranging in price from 95k - 160k comes standard with the infrastructure to attain Net Zero and accommodate solar based upgrades based on consumer demand and affordability. The base Green model is ENERGY STAR rated and allows the home owners an average savings of around $1,000 on their spending towards energy utility when compared to a normal home of its size.

The base Green level building envelope is constructed with Gramatica SIPs (Structural Insulated Panels) and energy efficient windows and doors. Due to the R-Value and efficiencies of the building envelope, the HVAC needs and specialty system are about 50% of the normal. Other improvements such as LED/CFL lighting is included as well on a package that is wind rated over 150mph.

The choice of a GREENER model will achieve NET ZERO with the use of solar thermal and Solar PV on the roof that is tied to the utility grid to offset the annual consumptive energy needs of the home. The cost for a grid tied upgrade is estimated expense of 20k.

The GREENEST model includes a battery bank system to operate independently from the grid if needed during storm events and power outages and to work with the grid normally for efficiencies. Battery banks and electronics can range in excess of 20k.

Martin Gramatica, with Gramatica SIPs, was present to discuss the benefits of SIP panel utilization for the envelope of the home. Earl Rahn with New South Windows additionally discussed the importance of the buildings envelope and the role that doors and windows play in the efficiency of the home. Ed Catanzaro with Cajon Mechanical/Net Zero Now summarized the importance of the building's HVAC and other components to provide energy use efficiencies.

If you would like further information, please contact Brian Lamb at 813.873.7300. Further information regarding Sunstone Homes can be viewed at and the efforts of Meritus Corp in sustainability practices with PACE, Property Assessed Clean Energy initiatives in its DMS line can be viewed at /

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Contact Information

Brian Lamb
Meritus Corp
Tampa, FL
Voice: 8138737300
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