Save money and the environment, by upgrading the exterior of your home | Squamish Chief

Save money and the environment, by upgrading the exterior of your home

The process of building or renovating your property to make it ultra energy-efficient is less than you might think.

Just talk to the folks at Blue Water Concepts in Squamish who have vast expertise in building and renovating homes. They can help you implement Passive House principles into your next residential or commercial renovation.

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So, what is a “Passive House?”

“A passive house is, right now, the world’s most stringent, voluntary building certification,” explains Mike Van Capelle, owner and founder of Blue Water Concepts who is a certified Passive House designer and tradesperson.

“Essentially, it’s an over-insulated building that takes very little heat or cooling to keep it at a comfortable temperature,” he adds.

“And if you are doing an exterior renovation of your home, you can bring it up to a very high standard of energy efficiency without really having to disturb the interior. It’s like wrapping your building in a big, airtight sweater.”

That means during the current social and physical distancing regulations Canadians are living under, work crews from Blue Water Concepts can undertake an exterior renovation with minimal contact with the homeowners or the interior of your home.

But what does implementing Passive House principles or building to the Passive House standard cost?

Van Capelle says it runs around 10 to 15 per cent higher than regular, residential construction. And part of that can be recaptured through government incentives for lowering your home’s energy use, and ongoing savings on your home’s heating and cooling bills.

“We are currently building a certified Passive House and its yearly heating bill will be about $140,” Van Capelle says. “They are incredibly energy efficient.”

Another attraction to having the work done now is the fact British Columbia’s Energy Step Code will mandate Passive House efficiency levels for all new construction by 2032.

“Since Blue Water has been focused on Passive House design and construction for over 5 years now, we have a head start,” says Van Capelle. “Six of our team members are Passive House certified trades people. A lot of companies won’t be up to speed before the new Step Code regulations come in effect over the next 12 years.”

Upgrading your home to implement Passive House principles can also affect the future market value of your property by bringing it in line with the 2032 code requirements.

For more about how you can dramatically reduce your property’s energy usage with a passive house focused renovation, visit Blue Water Concepts online at

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