We can alleviate 20% of our country’s carbon emissions with off-the-shelf technologies that make people’s lives better every day. Sealed’s investors have increased their commitments to help us make it happen faster.
A year ago today, I was 9 months pregnant with my son and in the midst of closing Sealed’s Series B round. I co-founded Sealed with Andy because I felt an urgent imperative to figure out how to decarbonize homes. Becoming a mother has only amplified the urgency I feel to stop the climate pollution from our nation’s housing– one fifth of our country’s total greenhouse gas emissions.
Today I am thrilled to announce that Sealed investors have upped their commitment to super-charge our efforts on our mission to stop home energy waste and electrify all homes. Coming off of a year of 350% growth, we’ve extended our Series B round to a total of $45.5M, led by Fifth Wall–the largest VC firm focused on technology-driven innovation for the global real estate industry– with participation from Robert Downey Jr.’s FootPrint Coalition Ventures, CityRock, Cyrus Capital, and Keyframe Capital.
Coming off of a year of 350% growth, we’ve extended our Series B round to a total of $45.5M, led by Fifth Wall–the largest VC firm focused on technology-driven innovation for the global real estate industry
Sealed envisions a future in which homes no longer contribute to climate change, and there’s never been a more poignant moment to make this vision a reality. Earlier this month, the IPCC emphasized that in order to stop the worst effects of global warming, we need to see greenhouse gas emissions peak before 2025 at the latest, and be reduced by 43% by 2030.
Do you know who the 6th largest carbon emitter in the world is? It’s not a country: it’s America’s homes.
Homes in the United States emit more carbon than the entire country of Germany. And while the first thing that comes to mind is putting solar on our roofs, decarbonizing homes requires a multi-faceted approach, one that starts with addressing the biggest driver of home energy use (and therefore climate pollution): heating and cooling.
If we fully electrify homes by displacing fossil-fueled appliances with electric-powered replacements, and then convert those homes to zero carbon power sources like solar, we can completely eliminate climate pollution from existing homes.
Fifty percent (yes, half!) of total home energy use is wasted, largely because the way we heat and cool our homes is outdated. Turning down the thermostat is not the solution–the issue is how our houses were built: 85% of American homes were built before 2000, when residential building standards for energy efficiency emerged. With the right efficiency upgrades, like weatherization and heat pumps, we could cut more than half of the climate pollution that is coming from our houses. If we fully electrify homes by displacing fossil-fueled appliances with electric-powered replacements, and then convert those homes to zero carbon power sources like solar, we can completely eliminate climate pollution from existing homes.
The good news: the technology already exists. Decarbonizing a home can be accomplished with off-the-shelf technologies that are already ready for prime time. Very importantly, these are upgrades that improve homeowners’ day-to-day lives.
- Weatherization: sealing up air leaks and installing high-performance insulation can cut a home’s energy use by 20-30% while balancing temperatures (no more drafty floors or hot/stuffy rooms)
- Heat pumps: modern all-in-one heating and cooling systems provide room-by-room control, use ⅓ the energy, and can be powered by renewable electricity. (And yes, they do work in even the most frigid climates)
- Electric appliances: in addition to heat pump HVAC, replace stoves, water heaters, clothes dryers, and other appliances that currently run on natural gas, oil, or propane. (Bonus here for our health: fossil fuel appliances can have a big impact on indoor air quality)
- Smart technologies: breaker panels, thermostats, lighting, energy monitoring
- Renewable energy + energy storage: rooftop solar, community solar, or simply choosing renewable power from your utility, combined with energy storage to ensure reliability and consistency
The bad news: we’re collectively not moving fast enough. At the current pace, it would take over 500 years to weatherize and electrify all homes. It’s not that people don’t want to solve the problem: 80% of homeowners are concerned about their home’s environmental impact. This winter searches for heat pumps were up more than 1000% compared to just five years ago, and Sealed installed heat pumps in 20% of our projects in 2021, up from 4% the prior year.
Why are so few homes adopting these very effective technologies? Two primary reasons: hassle and expense. Most homeowners aren’t sure where to start in making their home efficient – half of homeowners do not know that most energy waste is related to heating and air conditioning. It can be very time consuming to coordinate all of the contractors that need to be involved (it usually takes more than one, and most of these upgrades require professional expertise). Without Sealed to make the process easy, most homeowners don’t even make it to the step where they realize how expensive upfront it can be: a whole home retrofit including both weatherization and electrification typically costs upwards of $25,000 depending on your location, home size, and required upgrades.
This is why we started Sealed, to be a full-service partner to stop home energy waste and electrify your home.
Sealed is for homeowners who want to live in more comfort while using less energy. We accelerate adoption of weatherization and electrification upgrades by making the process easy, affordable, and accountable to impact: we design the right project, we match vetted local contractors, and we cover the upfront costs–we only get paid if we cut energy waste.
We’ve found that Sealed’s streamlined and performance-oriented direct-to-consumer approach can more than double the likelihood that homeowners will adopt efficiency retrofits. And with a new infusion of support from our investors, we’re ready to scale to the next level. In the past year we’ve expanded from New York to New Jersey, Connecticut, the Philadelphia metro area, and we have just arrived in the Chicago metro area, with additional expansions ahead.
We’re eager to make an impact on millions of homeowners’ lives across the country in the coming years, and in the process, make a big difference for the planet.
Decarbonizing homes is hard work, and our team is growing. We will continue to hire top talent who feel passionate about stopping home energy waste and electrifying homes. In the past 6 months alone we have added three key members to our executive team.
- Sarah Pierce recently joined as our Chief Revenue Officer. Bringing together marketing, sales and implementation gives our customers a holistic experience from the first interaction to designing the right solution, matching top-rated local contractors, and managing the project start to finish.
- Angela Romano joined in November as our Chief People Officer. Last year Sealed’s head count grew 150% and with plans to add 100 members to the team in 2022.
- Paul Zecsker joined as VP of Product to focus on delivering a digital experience that educates homeowners on home energy waste & electrification and tracks a home’s energy consumption and impact.
If you want to apply your skills solving one of the top ten sources of carbon emissions in the world, check out our job openings to see how you can make a difference every day. I’ve never been more excited about the challenge, and the opportunity, we’re tackling here at Sealed, and I hope you’ll join us.