Clayton Unveils Net Zero Home

The_Pulse_Berkshire_Hathaway_2022_ExteriorClayton Homes (a Berkshire Hathaway Company) last month unveiled its first Net Zero home to the public. The company, one of the largest national builders of off-site and site-built homes, paired several energy efficiency upgrades and a solar roofing system to deliver the CrossMod model home it says is both sustainable and attainable. 

Targeting Efficiency First

Net Zero homes are like code-built homes, only much more efficient. They are regular grid-tied homes that are also air-tight, well insulated, and energy-efficient, and they produce as much energy as they consume, according to the Zero Energy Project. 

The first objective in achieving an energy-efficient home is delivering a well-constructed thermal envelope. “At Clayton, we prioritize energy efficiency in every home we build, and it is that familiarity with efficiency that made it possible for us to design this Net Zero model,” said William Jenkins, director of environment and sustainability for Clayton Homes. With the included energy efficiency upgrades, our team was able to dial in and reduce the amount of electricity required to power the home. After targeting efficiency, we then selected a solar system that would account for the home’s electrical consumption.”

Clayton’s Net Zero home includes the following features: Energy Star® appliances, LED lights, Low-E windows with argon, R22-21-50 blown-in (floor, wall, and ceiling insulation ), and a programmable thermostat (added feature), and a premium solar roof system. The walls and floors were insulated with fiberglass batt and blown-in insulation, while the ceiling includes blown-in fiberglass or cellulose insulation. 


Making High-Performance Affordable

Many consumers equate the term “high-performance” with a high price, but Jenkins says that Clayton’s commitment to energy-efficient construction and its hybrid on- and off-site construction practices help it deliver a home that is attainable for new home buyers. 

 “As leaders in affordable housing, we play an important role in delivering energy-efficient homes at an accessible price point,” Jenkins says. “All of our homes, from our entry-level TRU line (starting in the upper $300s) to this Net Zero home offer energy-efficient features that can lead to long-term savings on utility costs and reduce a family’s overall expenses. We’re able to reduce the premium of this type of construction through our off-site building process, vertical integration, and continued efforts aimed at increasing our operational efficiency. This Net Zero, 1,549 square foot home costs just under $250,000[1] with solar before land costs.”


Innovating Sustainably

 Jenkins says sustainability is a holistic commitment for the company. In fact, only one 64-gallon bin of waste was collected during the off-site building process of the Net Zero home. Berkshire Hathaway Shareholders saw the model (and the waste generated by it) during the company’s annual meeting last month. This helped attendees conceptualize the low amount of waste accumulated during the off-site home building process.

 “This home demonstrates Clayton’s dedication to building homes that uphold our commitment to affordability, sustainability, and design innovation,” Jenkins notes. “In light of a changing world, we are taking a holistic approach to environmental responsibility in the sense that the environmental performance of our homes is equally important to our efforts in sustainability across operations.”

The newly launched Clayton Homes social responsibility website features stories from across the country about its dedication to being a good environmental steward and community member.  


[1] Price is estimated as of April 2022 and does not include taxes, title fees, insurance premiums, filing or recording fees, land or improvements to the land, wheels, and axels, or community/homeowner association fees.




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