One thing new home builders have it over just about anybody who manufactures and sells anything on the consumer market is an uncanny knack at quickening the pulse of someone who's in the market for their own new dream-come-true home.

This is the stock-in-trade for home builders, and it's unique to them that what keeps them up at night is their ability--or not--to deliver on that physiological effect in their customers and potential customers, to quicken their pulse. Sometimes, we take that for granted. But we shouldn't. We should celebrate and honor the fact that men and women commit themselves 365 days a year to the phenomenon of generating a moment of excitement, of expectations, of promise, and of achievement like no other feeling people get to feel when they're about to decide to buy and when they finally walk in the door of their own new home.

For all there is to say, positive or negative, about the economics and business practices of home building and residential development as an industry sector, it's still one of the most noble of all livelihoods to pursue because it matters so much to each and every person, or couple who decides to become a client or customer or, in this day and age, user of what a new home has to give.

That, in turn, becomes one of the United States economy's most important drivers as it rolls up within private residential construction spending--which clocked in in November at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of $531 billion, the highest it's been since February 2007. Na Zhao, a senior economist at the National Association of Home Builders writes:

Single-family construction spending rose to a $270.1 billion annual pace in November, up by 1.9%. It was the highest monthly annual rate since November 2007. This is in line with the strong readings of single-family housing starts and solid builder confidence.

What that means at the granular household and neighborhood level is that a lot of home builders are doing the job of quickening the pulse of buyers, expanding the wave of demand, and, in their way, energizing the economy, locally, regionally, and nationally, in material and measurable ways. With action, not just words, builders and their partners and investors, are literally making America great.

Now, the job becomes discovering ways to expand that wave of demand even more--to make it so that the new and evolving ways people want to live in their homes become the highest priority focus points of architecture, engineering, and construction--and then to meet that demand and expand the market altogether. To do that, we've begun to understand that it means disassembling some of the hard-wired processes and systems that connect architecture to engineering to construction, and to re-fuse them and integrate them in ways they've never worked together inextricably before.

If money and time are no object--which is rare--then architecture, engineering, and construction can do amazing things together. It's much tougher to make that happen in the messy real world of everyday life, among people who have jobs and make a living doing them. Our BUILDER Concept project is for those people, who work for a living, and save, and raise families, and provide for them with their earnings.

And as a result of a highly collaborative effort, which home builders who plan to head to Orlando next week can see, and tour, and experience education and training around live and in person, the Meritage reNEWable Living Home, at Estates at Parkside, Orlando, is the kind of place that will quicken their pulse.

The reason is this: The reNEWable Living Home's full-blend of architecture, engineering, and construction aim and achieve solely to put customers--and their heart-beats--first and foremost in a process that tends to rank that goal several wrungs down on a ladder of priorities that have to do with building properly and profitably.

Here was the challenge for the reNEWable Living Home team: Make a home that can quicken the pulse of a multi-generational household decision-maker by designing it, engineering it, and constructing it in such a way that it's both intensely exciting and attainable. Equally important, the challenge was to do it with products, processes, and people resources builders can access today, purchase today, do today, and scale today and tomorrow.

The reNEWable Living Home is one you can build tomorrow, and it's one you can scale up to make it so that can be built fast, right the first time, sustainable, healthy, and at a spec and detail level that will speed up the pulses of just about any "Sandwich Generation" adult whose got aging parents, adult kids that need a place to live while they pay down college debt for a while, or get a start in new careers, or perhaps, want to make part of their home available as a short-term revenue suite.

To many, many households, and an increasing number of them every year, optionality like this is part of their lives. And yet, most builders still look at the nuclear married-with-young-children as the baseline household type that they build for. A hybrid home that can nimbly shift from one purpose to another, over time or in real-time, is what reNEWable is all about.

"This project aims to change--and to raise the bar--what people mean and expect when they say a home should be a place for them to be safe and healthy, and to be able to prosper," says C.R. Herro, VP of energy efficiency and sustainability at Meritage, whose creative and engineering brainchild the reNEWable Home is. "We builders need to change what our customers expect of us, so that we can exceed that baseline expectation and then go beyond, to truly excite them. That's why this project matters so much to Meritage. That's what 'Life. Built. Better.' means to us"

And that's just what the Meritage Homes Orlando division team did, and it took a village of partners working together to do it.

And the thing is, you can see it; you can learn how to do it--scalably and attainably; and you can build it on a lot, again and again, starting tomorrow. That's truly pulse-quickening.