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Waiting has its rewards

It’s said that good things come to those who wait. The drywall is up and the interior painting nearly finished and now Matt Johnson and Grace Pontas are patiently awaiting a few more interior finishes before the expected move-in date of early March.

They originally hoped to be inside Glasswing in early December but a series of delays has pushed the occupancy date back a couple of months. But Johnson says they don’t mind the delays so much because much of it has been beyond their control. And they want their dream home to be flawless.

Air tightness is key

The couple has spent many, many hours sourcing materials to ensure the home is as energy efficient as possible. And key to achieving Gold LEED® status is ensuring the home is as airtight as possible.

“Before we can move in, we need to do a door blower test that measures how airtight the home is,” he explains. “Air quality and spikes in temperature are what you’re trying to control so any leaks can really affect that.”

Putting it to the test

The blower door test — a variable-speed fan mounted on an adjustable panel that can fit into any exterior door opening – measures the home's rate of air leakage. When the fan is turned on, the pressure inside the home is gradually reduced to allow outside air to flow into the house through unsealed openings or cracks in the home’s structure.

Johnson says they paid more attention than normal to the airtightness of the home. As an example, he explains that where the top or bottom of framed walls meets floorboards is a notorious spot for air leakage. So they wrapped a continuous “barrier” between the walls and floorboards and added spray foam insulation to the floor system.

“We achieve LEED® points based on airtightness so it’s paramount that we go above and beyond the standard,” he adds.

Attention to detail in their design work for the Glenvalley project netted Distinctive Solutions three Tommie awards from the Canadian Home Builders’ Association Central Okanagan.

Attention to detail rewarded

Johnson’s attention to detail helped their company, Architecturally Distinct Solutions Inc., win three Gold Tommie awards for the work their firm did on the Glenvalley townhouse development in Kelowna. The Tommie 2011 Gold Gala, sponsored by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association Central Okanagan, celebrates excellence in the construction of affordable housing, renovations, single family homes, marketing and energy efficient considerations.

Architecturally Distinct Solutions Inc. won awards for Excellence in Semi-Detached or Town-Home Development, Excellence in Marketing and Excellence in Creating Affordable Housing.

Johnson says they plan to enter Glasswing as part of the 2012 Tommie Awards.