AVR Homebuilders Captures Prestigious Energy Star Award
By Keith Loria, Contributing Writer
New York—AVR Homebuilders, a division of AVR Realty Company LLC, was one of two residential developers in the United States to be awarded a 2012 Energy Star Partner of the Year-New Home Builder award by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
This award acknowledges the company’s approach to protecting the environment and promoting the Energy Star program.
“This award is a tremendous achievement for our company and it’s kind of validation of one of our directives as far as energy conservation goes,” Mark Eickelbeck, AVR Homebuilders’ Chief Operating Officer, tells MHN. “We put a lot of effort and made a commitment back in 2006 to exclusively build our new residential construction to Energy Star standards and have really been working to stay at forefront of that movement.”
Homes built to Energy Star standards, Eickelbeck says, are more comfortable, plus they ensure long-term savings on energy bills while protecting the environment.
“The biggest plus for residents is it means money in their pockets,” he says. “By buying an Energy Star home, they are being assured by a third-party verification that their home is more efficient and thus, the utility bills will be lower than buying or renting an older home.”
Over the past 20 years, American families and businesses have saved nearly $230 billion on utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to those from more than 350 million vehicles with help from Energy Star.
AVR was chosen for the award out of approximately 20,000 organizations that participate in the Energy Star program.
“As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Energy Star program, EPA is proud to recognize AVR Homebuilders with the 2012 Energy Star Partner of the Year Award for New Home Builders,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “AVR Homebuilders and all our Energy Star award winners are building an energy-efficient future for America’s families by developing Energy Star-certified homes that reduce energy costs and protect the environment.”
To date, AVR has built a total of 374 Energy Star-certified homes in the New York Metropolitan region and has six active home development properties in the area. The company owns approximately 6,000 apartments, including properties acquired in Texas, Louisiana, South Carolina and Florida.
“One of our strengths as a company is the ability to migrate across types of real estate,” Eickelbeck says. “In the economic downturn, multifamily has been fantastic, and a growing part of our business.”
AVR implements the goals and objectives of the Energy Star program throughout every phase of the design and construction process, adding high-efficiency features in every unit it builds.
“It’s basically building a more efficient envelope, making the shell of the home or unit more efficient from an energy perspective,” Eickelbeck says. “That means it has less heat loss and heat gain. That directly results in less costly heating and cooling cycle.”
The company’s commitment to the Energy Star program ignited in 2006 when it looked at the trends of the market and what people were looking for.
The EPA also praised AVR’s efforts in ensuring that its sales staff is well trained and fully versed on Energy Star certified homes, as its sales personnel are trained to conduct hardhat tours of home models and are able to point out the benefits throughout the building process.