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Career Profile: Energy Efficient Builder

Why Is Energy Efficiency Building a Job of Tomorrow?
Energy efficient builders will be in high demand to help design environmentally friendly homes and office buildings that reduce waste, cut costs and lessen the effect on the planet. Employment opportunities for energy efficient builders are expected to increase substantially, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Architects, including energy efficient builders, make an average salary of $64,150 annually.

What Does an Energy Efficient Builder Do?
Energy efficient builders are architects who specialize in designing and constructing structures that have less impact on the environment and conserve more energy than typical buildings. They work with clients to create the overall look and aesthetic of structures. They also must consider the practicality, use, engineering and federal regulations of buildings. For example, where a structure's doors and plugs will be located and how it will be powered must be planned by the builder in addition to designing its look and feel. Builders draft detailed designs of the building, including information such as air conditioning units and plumbing, and also include specifics on what materials to use. Energy efficient builders take an extra step in figuring out how to create buildings that reduce energy waste through such techniques as improved insulation and sunlight-reflecting windows.

What Kind of Training Do I Need to Become an Energy Efficient Builder?
Energy efficient builders must have either a five-year bachelor's degree in architecture or a master's degree in a related field. Master's degrees for architecture typically take two to four years to complete. Degree programs cover such topics as architectural history and building design software. Many schools offer courses with an emphasis on energy efficiency building that students looking to enter this field will find beneficial. After completing an architecture program, graduates must complete an internship period, which generally lasts three years. After that, they may apply for licensure and work professionally in the field.