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Building Green

Going “Green” is interpreted differently in many forms, products and industries.  Here we will give you an overview of what it means to Go “Green” when it comes to building your new home.

The Building Green takes into consideration site protection practices, recycling procedures, indoor air quality, systems and products incorporated into the home and the type of construction.

*Read on to learn how you can incorporate Building Green methods & practices into your new custom home*

SITE and WATER Protection

A plan to reduce the impact of development and the natural features of the building site is the first step you and your home builder will take towards a Green Home. This plan will help prevent erosion, sedimentation and water pollution due to storm-water runoff.  In addition the plan will conserve water and even protect water quality. Other ways of outdoor water conservation include landscape design and innovative irrigation systems.  Indoor water conservation can be addressed by selecting low-flow plumbing fixtures, radiant heated floors and tank-less hot water heaters.

ENERGY Efficiency

The design of your home and how it will be oriented on your building site has a great impact on how energy efficient your new home will be.   Your custom home builder and their design team can take advantage of sunlight and cooling breezes. Natural light streaming in through windows during daylight eliminates the need to turn on electric lights during the day and passive solar can warm your home in the winter while prevailing breezes can cool your home in the summer reducing the heating and cooling load.  In addition well insulated windows, doors, walls and ceilings help reduce energy loss, reducing your overall energy usage. Many products have earned a blue ENERGY STAR™ mark. These products meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the EPA and the US Department of Energy.  Many ENERGY STAR™ products are available including light fixtures, HVAC, appliances and even home electronics.  With the help of ENERGY STAR™ Americans saved enough energy in 2007 alone to avoid greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those from 27 million cars — all while saving $16 billion on their utility bills.

SUSTAINABLE Practices

Using engineered products and waste-limiting framing options, your custom home builder conserves materials that would otherwise become waste. The effort of eliminating the amount of waste and having an on-site recycling plan during construction conserves our landfill capacities. With fuel cost at an all time high it’s important to consider using locally sourced products, minimizing fuel usage and transportation impacts such as air pollution. To stay “Green” while selecting your homes finishes look for rapidly renewable, recycled, post consumer and salvaged products.  Cork and bamboo are renewable resources as well as natural materials.  Linoleum, also made of natural materials is a nice alternative to vinyl/sheet vinyl.  The added benefit of these flooring options is the improvement of indoor air quality.  They reduce or eliminate toxins found in common flooring options and they reduce dust that is collected in carpeting.

DESIGNING Your Home

After taking all of these Building Green practices into consideration really think about how you will live in your new home.  Build a home that truly meets your needs instead of a home filled with rooms that will seldom be used.  A more efficiently designed home would use fewer materials and save on heating and cooling conserving even more energy. Lastly, consider designing a home that incorporates universal design allowing you to stay in your new home for years to come.  As time passes you’ll be able to move through your home with comfort and ease and continue to live in the community you call home.

“Together we can ensure that there will be resources for future generations”

NICCON owner, Nicholas Freitag built his own personal home to GreenStar specifications showing that he truly believes in the Great and Universal  benefits of living in and owning a Green Home.  Nick eagerly and enthusiastically pursues educating himself in the new and upcoming Building Green & Energy Efficient methods.