Third Party Verification & High Performance Programs


ENERGY STAR Home Performance in a nutshell…

ENERGY STAR certified new homes are designed and built to standards well above most other homes on the market today, delivering energy efficiency savings of up to 30 percent when compared to typical new homes. A new home that has earned the ENERGY STAR label has undergone a process of inspections, testing, and verification to meet strict requirements set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), delivering better quality, better comfort, and better durability.

To earn the ENERGY STAR, a home must meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Homes achieve this level of performance through a complete package of building science measures including:

  • A Complete Thermal Enclosure System that includes comprehensive air sealing, properly installed insulation, and high-performance windows work together to enhance comfort, improve durability, reduce maintenance costs, and lower monthly utility bills.
  • A Complete Heating and Cooling System that are engineered and installed to deliver more comfort, better moisture control, improved indoor air quality, and quieter operation.
  • A Complete Water Management System which is a comprehensive package of best building practices and materials to protect roofs, walls and foundations from water damage, provide added protection, and reduce the risk of indoor air quality problems.
  • Energy-Efficient Lighting and Appliances ENERGY STAR certified lighting, appliances, and fans are commonly installed throughout ENERGY STAR certified homes, helping to reduce monthly utility bills, while providing high-quality performance.

To ensure that a home meets ENERGY STAR guidelines, third–party verification by a certified Home Energy Rater is required. This Rater works closely with the builder throughout the construction process to help determine the  most appropriate energy-saving features for their homes. Additionally, raters conduct onsite testing and inspections to verify the energy efficiency measures, as well as insulation, air tightness, and duct sealing details.



LEED BD+C and LEED for Homes ConsultingLEED consulting checklist

Confluence Architecture and Sustainability provides LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) consulting services for commercial buildings and homes. We strive to make the LEED process complimentary to the building design.  We seek out LEED points that pair with client needs and design intent.  As trained architects and energy auditors, we have a complete knowledge base that compliments and informs our LEED consulting.  This ensures that the project does not just chase LEED points. Rather, we use LEED as one of many tools to ensure that your project is beautiful, durable,  energy efficient, and comfortable. We can provide full certification services or targeted consulting and guidance to fit any budget.


Living Building, PassiveHouse

Seeking Living Building certification?  Want a PassiveHouse? Confluence loves a challenge!  For clients that want to go beyond the ordinary sustainable goals or for projects that have a complexity that demands it, Confluence can help.  Our principals work at the cutting edge of sustainability while also being cognizant of real world construction and costs.  Angela Loughry has consulted on two aspiring Living Building projects in western Colorado (see The Third Street Center and SEI Paonia Classroom building).  She has presented to a congressional subcommittee on High Performance Building to receive the award for the SBIC Beyond Green Building.  She is continuing her education in the PassiveHouse standard. Mark McLain  specializes HERS ratings on complex homes.