June 30, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to Comparing Durability, Energy Efficiency, and Quality Home Features in Buying a Home

Buying a home is one of the most significant investments you'll make in your lifetime. It's a long-term commitment that requires the careful consideration of several factors. Critical elements include durability, energy efficiency, and high-quality features, including appliances, quality countertops, and more. These features impact your quality of life and your property's sustainability and maintenance costs. In this article, we'll provide you with the ultimate guide to comparing these features between properties. We'll cover everything from construction materials to appliances, so you can decide when buying your next home.


The construction materials used are essential when comparing the durability of existing homes and in new construction. When evaluating the durability of a property, look for signs of wear and tear, such as cracks, water damage or missing shingles on your roof. These can be costly to repair and may indicate underlying structural issues. Additionally, items like your roof, AC system, even down to your floors, all have a warranty, and/or life cycle. For example, even if you are meticulous in taking care of your shingles, they need to be replaced within a certain amount of time. Most shingles have a 30 year life span, but might not make it that long. When looking for an existing home, checking how old these big ticket items is important to keep in mind. 
When building with Murphy Homes, we use quality materials and hire quality contractors to build our homes. We pride ourselves on hiring the best of the best in terms of craftsmanship. As a smaller builder, we have the luxury of hand-picking all our trades based on the superior quality of work rather than quantity. 
Additionally, when you buy new, all of your appliances are new, and under warranty!

Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency is Energy-efficient homes save you money on utility bills and reduce your carbon footprint. When comparing properties, look for features such as double-paned windows, hearty insulation, and efficient HVAC systems. These features help regulate the temperature in your home, reducing the need for heating and cooling. Energy Star-certified appliances, LED lighting, and programmable thermostats are also essential for energy efficiency.
Murphy Homes is proud to offer these options, and more, for your new home! Here’s a list of all of our Energy Efficient aspects included in all of our homes:
  • R-13 Insulation in Walls
  • R-30 Insulation in the Ceiling
  • Murphy Homes Air Barrier™ air infiltration system in all homes to ensure your home is sealed tight against the elements.
  • All Murphy Homes are “Blower Door” tested, and our ductwork is pressure tested to ensure <6% leakage.
  • “Low-e” Windows and Doors.
Not enough energy efficiency for you? Ask about upgrading the insulation in your home!

Quality Home Features

Quality home features make your living experience more comfortable and increase your property's value. When comparing properties, look for features like hardwood floors, granite countertops, and stainless steel appliances. These durable and timeless features add to your home's aesthetic and value. High-quality plumbing fixtures, like faucets and showerheads, are also important to consider.
For flooring, Murphy Homes offer the following in all of our homes!
  • Beautiful, enduring, engineered hardwood floors are included in the foyer, kitchen, and breakfast nook.
  • Ceramic tile with asphalt underlayment is included in the utility room and all bathrooms.
  • Thick Carpet with 6lb pad included in all bedrooms and family room.
Being a personalized builder, we can add hardwood floors anywhere you’d like throughout the home! We also have different flooring levels, varying in color and durability. For the kitchen, Murphy Homes offer granite countertops with durable stainless steel under-mount sink, hand-laid tile backsplash, and easy-to-clean painted cabinets. We use Delta products in our bathrooms & kitchens, all with lifetime warranties.
In the primary bathroom, we have: 
  • Delta “Woodhurst” Series faucets featuring a lifetime guarantee.
  • 36” “Gentlemen’s Height” vanities.
  • Easy to clean and long-lasting granite countertops. 
  • Luxurious shower with full height hinged shower door.
  • Relaxing soaker tub.
  • Walk-in primary closet.
Finally, throughout the home, we offer extensive crown molding, our unique Murphy Homes Cubby™ with wood bench is included in every home we build and window casings.
All of this is included with the purchase of a Murphy Home! If there are other things you want to add, we are more than happy to consider those requests. As Your Builder, we do all we can to ensure your home is of the highest quality.


Maintenance costs are an often-overlooked factor when comparing properties. A property with low maintenance costs will save you money in the long run. Look for low-maintenance landscaping, durable construction materials, and energy-efficient appliances. These features require less upkeep and will save you money on repairs and replacements.
This is really important when comparing the pros and cons of purchasing an existing home versus a new home. While the price of an existing home may seem more attractive at first glance, you have to keep in mind that it is not the final cost of the home. With most used homes, additional costs will come up, like replacing your AC unit, buying new appliances, replacing old carpet, etc. Keep in mind these costs are usually out of pocket for a used home.
Though the price of a new home might be a little bit more, your new home needs no repairs or design changes; over the long term, you will need fewer repairs or replacements since everything is brand new. If there are any issues, you will have those items under warranty, so you can have complete peace of mind when purchasing a new home.


When comparing homes, it's essential to evaluate the quality and age of the appliances. Appliances like refrigerators, dishwashers, and washing machines can be expensive to replace. Look for Energy Star certified energy-efficient appliances with a long lifespan. Newer appliances are also more likely to be energy-efficient and may come with warranties.
Murphy Homes offers GE stainless steel appliances! All of our dishwashers, which are included in every home, are Energy Star Certified. If you choose to purchase a refrigerator through us, it will also be Energy Star Certified. 


When comparing properties, it's important to keep track of the features and benefits of each property. Create a spreadsheet or list including durability, energy efficiency, quality home features, maintenance costs, appliances, sustainability, and other relevant factors. This will help you make an informed decision and compare each property objectively.

Get in touch with our team of experts to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you compare and evaluate properties based on durability, energy efficiency, and quality features.

In conclusion, comparing the durability, energy efficiency, and quality of home features between properties is crucial when buying a home. These factors affect your long-term costs, comfort, and environmental impact. When evaluating properties, consider the construction materials, energy-efficient features, quality home features, maintenance costs, appliances, sustainability, and other relevant factors. By doing so, you can make an informed decision and find the perfect home for you and your family.

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Questions? Ask Morgan

We look forward to working with you on your new home buying journey. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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Questions? We Can Help.
Questions? Ask Morgan