Preferred Builders Inc. Wins Big at DOE Challenge Home Builder Awards

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Preferred Builders Inc., in partnership with Steven Winter Associates Inc. (SWA), announce a Grand Award-winning project in the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Challenge Home competition.

Peter Fusaro of Preferred Builders receives Challenge Home Builder Award

Peter Fusaro of Preferred Builders receives the Challenge Home Builder Award from Sam Rashkin, Chief Architect, Building Technology Program, US DOE

Preferred Builders Inc., in partnership with Steven Winter Associates Inc. (SWA), is pleased to announce a Grand Award-winning project in the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Challenge Home competition. The first-ever Housing Innovation Awards ceremony took place during the DOE Solar Decathlon 2013 on October 4, in Irvine, California. Preferred Builders, Inc. was one of eight builders nationwide to be recognized in the Custom Builder category.

The Performance House in Old Greenwich, CT was the second home in the country, and first in the Northeast, to receive the DOE’s Challenge Home certification. The home has earned ENERGY STAR v3.0, Water Sense, and Indoor airPLUS™ labels; it is certified LEED® for Homes™ Platinum and NGBS Emerald. Additionally, the house was awarded second place in the 2012 Connecticut Zero Energy Home Challenge and named Best Green Energy Efficient Spec Home in 2012 by Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Connecticut.

Peter Fusaro of Preferred Builders Inc. partnered with the Consortium for Advanced Residential Buildings (CARB), SWA’s residential research team through the DOE’s Building America Program, to conduct an energy analysis and navigate the Performance House through the DOE Building America Challenge Home certification process. In addition, SWA provided third-party HERS rating services, as well as all other verification and certification services for the home.

The two-story, three-bedroom, 2,700 square-foot home reflects a traditional style with steep gables, dormer windows, and a columned front porch to fit in among the coastal town’s historic homes. Myriad exterior and interior components were chosen to maximize efficiency and exemplify sustainable construction.

The DOE Challenge Home Builder Awards are presented to builders for their leadership in increasing energy efficiency, improving indoor air quality, and making homes zero net-energy ready; changing the way homes are designed and constructed. The DOE Challenge Home award is the symbol of excellence in home building. Only the top builders in the country meet the level of quality specified by the Challenge Home guidelines.

The Housing Innovation Awards recognize a diverse group of industry leaders who help communities across the country save money and energy and are leading the way to affordable, zero net-energy homes. The Housing Innovation Awards support DOE’s commitment to promote improving the energy efficiency of the U.S. housing stock through innovative strategies and technologies.

About Preferred Builders, Inc.

Preferred Builders Inc. is a general contractor specializing in new home construction, high performance home construction, and energy efficient and green building, located in Greenwich, Connecticut, and owned and operated by Peter J. Fusaro. Celebrating over 27 years in the home building industry, Preferred Builders is dedicated to building quality homes throughout Fairfield County.

About Steven Winter Associates, Inc.

Steven Winter Associates, Inc. provides research, consulting and advisory services to improve commercial, residential and multifamily built environments for private and public sector clients. We specialize in energy, sustainability and accessibility consulting as well as certification, research & development and compliance services. Our engineers and architects have led the way since 1972 in the development of best practices to achieve high performance buildings. As a matter of course, we collaborate with our clients to produce the most cost-effective and innovative solutions. For more information, visit and

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Heather Breslin
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