Distinctive Homes goes green

Distinctive Homes of Las Vegas’ philosophy is all about keeping up with a changing world. Its motto is: “When the world changes, we listen.”

“Since Distinctive Homes began building in 1980 we’ve sought ways to keep pace with the world around us. That’s an underlying philosophy of the way we do business,” said company President and founder Anthony Musso.

As an example, Musso cites the environmental concerns shared by so many.

“We are continually evaluating and researching renewable energy sources because we’re looking for practical solutions to manage our environment,” he said.

Distinctive Homes has been part of the Energy Star program for 18 years. The Sears Kenmore dishwashers in each home meet that standard and all upgraded appliances meet or exceed minimal standards, according to Musso.

Cocoon thermal insulation also is standard in each home. The insulation is Class 1, fire-rated because it increases a wall’s fire resistance up to 55 percent. It blocks air infiltration and convection currents to increase energy efficiency and reduces nuisance noise, while preserving natural resources, as it is made from nearly 80 percent recycled paper.

Low e-vinyl windows are standard, too. Low-e is short for “low emissivity” and indicates a window that has been coated with a microscopic, virtually invisible, metallic oxide layer that improves thermal performance by reducing solar heat gain and blocks up to 95 percent of ultraviolet light.

Sealed tight duct work is part of every home and is insulated, sealed and tested to minimize leaks and maintain a consistent temperature distribution, according to Musso.

Programmable thermostats in every home provide maximum control over daily temperature settings and allow for automatic adjustments when no one is home, he said.

The exterior of each house is fully sheeted with oriented strand board sheeting. Made from the same material as plywood, OSB is resin-reinforced to provide additional sound reduction and thermal performance.

Each Distinctive Home undergoes energy inspection for energy efficient construction by an independent third-party inspector. This ensures compliance with Energy Star standards and verification of installed materials. This is done during construction and, again, at the house’s completion, Musso said.

Options include the Smart Irrigation Controller, which can be programmed for specific plant and sprinkler types. It monitors weather readings to determine the right amount of water for each zone in the yard. An added bonus is that a built-in weather monitor prevents watering on rainy days or on freezing days, he said.

Radiant barrier roof sheeting provides a layer of aluminum on the wood in the roof to reduce the summer heat gain and winter heat loss.

Customer service representative Brian Vanderweghe said, “We always have the attitude that every customer is a lifelong customer. Because of this, we go above and beyond. We rely on referrals and those have to do with the quality of the home and customer service.”

For more information about the builder’s communities, call Springs Ranch, 220-4400; Taos Estates, 655-4893 or Canyon Estates, 658-5050. For more information about the builder visit online at

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