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A LEED Platinum Modular Home

Posted on Feb 20 2009 by Martin Holladay

This Near-Zero-Energy Prefab Can Be Erected On Your Site For $521,000

WALPOLE, NH — Bensonwood Homes of Walpole is now selling several near-zero-energy modular homes, including one model, called Unity 2, that has achieved LEED Platinum certification.

The Unity 2 modular home is based on the Unity House, a 1,937-square-foot home built in the summer of 2008 on the campus of Unity College in Unity, Maine. Unity House now serves as a residence for Mitch Thomashow, the president of Unity College, and Cindy Thomashow, the executive director of the college’s Center for Environmental Education.

Like the original Unity House, the Unity 2 prefab comes with R-40 walls, R-60 roof, triple-glazed windows, a Hallowell cold-climate air-source heat pumpHeat pump that relies on outside air as the heat source and heat sink; not as effective in cold climates as ground-source heat pumps., a 5.4-kW rooftop photovoltaic(PV) Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow. array, a solar hot water system, and a Nutech heat-recovery ventilator(HRV). Balanced ventilation system in which most of the heat from outgoing exhaust air is transferred to incoming fresh air via an air-to-air heat exchanger; a similar device, an energy-recovery ventilator, also transfers water vapor. HRVs recover 50% to 80% of the heat in exhausted air. In hot climates, the function is reversed so that the cooler inside air reduces the temperature of the incoming hot air. .

Bensonwood Homes will erect the Unity 2 on your site for $521,000. The price includes an R-20 concrete slab foundation. Because LEED for HomesLeadership in Energy and Environmental Design. LEED for Homes is the residential green building program from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). While this program is primarily designed for and applicable to new home projects, major gut rehabs can qualify. certification depends on site-specific information, Platinum certification cannot be guaranteed. Since it's been shown to be achievable in the demanding climate of Maine, however, there’s an excellent chance that LEED Platinum certification could be achieved at other sites.

Bensonwood Homes is also selling several other near-zero-energy prefabs, at prices ranging from $392,000 to $577,000. For more information, visit

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  1. Bensonwood Homes

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