Save Some Green
New eco-friendly Austin homes are designed to save you money — and the planet
Affordable, zero-energy-capable living is attainable at Whisper Valley, a 2,063-acre, environmentally friendly community located east of the SH-130 Tollway and just seven minutes away from Tesla's forthcoming Austin Gigafactory.
Now pre-selling Phase 2, called Whisper Highlands, the new homes from Pacesetter Homes, Buffington Homes, GFO Home, AHA Dream Homes, and Thurman Homes are priced from the mid $200s-$400s. Whisper Highlands will feature 267 more homes and new amenities that include a recently opened dog park, new organic gardens and parks, and expanded trails.
Whisper Valley is unlike any other sustainable community in the nation thanks to the EcoSmart Solution, the green energy service provider for all the homeowners in the community.
EcoSmart homes are powered by an innovative GeoGrid that provides geothermal heating and cooling using the natural heat of the earth. That's transmitted through special underground pipes that are connected to ground-source heat pumps located in every home.
Coupled with Solar PV, smart home technology, and energy-saving home appliances, the EcoSmart Solution can reduce energy requirements to zero — based upon individual energy behavior, of course — and help homeowners save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on utilities each year.
"Everyone wants to save on monthly energy bills and live in environmentally sustainable homes," says Douglas Gilliland, president of Taurus of Texas, Whisper Valley's developer. "The EcoSmart program helps builders achieve extremely low Home Energy Ratings (or HERS), which translates into big annual savings.
"Today, most new homes receive a HERS rating of around 60-62 out of 100, but in Whisper Valley, our HERS ratings are 25 or lower — and some homes have been rated as low as 15. Homebuyers are surprised to find this technology so affordable when shopping for a new home."
EcoSmart homes also include other energy-efficient and smart home technologies, including the Google Nest family of products that are designed to optimize energy use according to each homeowner's schedule. The Works with Nest program serves as the portal to smart homes and can integrate more than 10,000 products. Every home also offers options for high-speed Google Fiber Internet service and pre-wiring for garage-mounted Electric Vehicle chargers.
Whisper Valley homes also feature high-efficiency appliances, including refrigerators and dishwashers, designed to minimize energy demand. All EcoSmart homes are provided with an energy monitoring platform that enables homeowners to see their energy use and take control over how they allocate their energy expenditure.
Even more enticing, Whisper Valley homeowners are currently eligible for tax incentives for all this earth-saving goodness. The current federal tax incentive allows homeowners to write off 26 percent of the value of both systems, which translates to thousands of dollars in immediate savings and makes the investment even more affordable.
Environmentally sensitive living goes beyond the home in Whisper Valley. The community showcases 700 acres of greenspace, parks, and amenities, including walking and biking trails, a resort pool, fitness facility, and a lifestyle director and lifestyle programming that features healthy cooking classes, yoga, and fun events for residents year-round.
Onsite organic gardens are managed by the community farmer. Future amenities will include Whisper Valley's signature 600-acre public park, retail and commercial, two school sites, a planned transportation hub, and a fire station. The community will one day have 7,500 homes connected to small shops and restaurants in its seven villages.
To learn more about Whisper Valley's zero-energy-capable homes, call 512-710-3799 or visit www.whispervalleyaustin.com.
Whisper Valley is located at 9400 Petrichor Blvd., off of SH 130 along FM 973 in East Austin.