How To Build a Greener Dream Home

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                    One of the most important reasons people choose to build or renovate their home is to personalize it to meet their needs. Many home builders specialize in ways to incorporate energy-efficient and sustainable building practices. Sustainable building practices are products or techniques designed to reduce a building’s impact on its global and local environment. Here are some ways you can incorporate green building practices into your home renovation or building process.

Avoid Toxins
Bill Starkey, CEO of Starkey Construction, and custom home builder ensured that his staff uses low-VOC flooring and paint in all projects. This improves indoor air quality and protects the atmosphere. Greenhouse gasses are formed when sunlight, VOCs, and nitrogen in the environment react.

Recycle Building Materials
Ask your builder to recycle leftover building supplies. Excess materials can be donated to local non-for-profits to be resold to finance their services. Reusing or recycling materials is better than them ending in a landfill. Take it a step further by asking your builder to purchase recycled building materials. Consider upcycling artwork or furniture to add your own environmentally conscious design to your home.

Make Small Changes
While big changes have the most impact on the environment, making several small changes can have the same impact. Using LED lightbulbs, on-demand water heaters, programmable thermostats, and water-saving faucets are all small adjustments that improve your environmental footprint.

Find the Source
Know the source of your building materials. Wood harvested from sustainable sources should be your primary building material. Many American landowners are developing ecological farming practices.
Purchase supplies and materials from local sources. Not only are you supporting a local business, but transportation costs associated with moving products from the manufacturer to their final destination are also minimized.

Insulate Your Home
There are many insulation options available other than traditional fiberglass insulation. Your builder will help you determine the best product for your climate and the appropriate amount to install. While the initial cost may be higher, heating and air conditioning costs will be lower, as the temperature in your home will remain more stable. Several non-fiberglass insulation products include:

Natural cork insulation
Sheep’s wool
Spray foam

Direct the Water
Stormwater runoff impacts the natural environment of your home. Work with an engineer to protect your home from stormwater runoff, while at the same time minimizing damage to the environment. Pervious pavement, green roofs, and rain collection systems allow you to manage water on your property. Your local nursery center can help you install rain gardens or plant greenery that thrives in your climate.

Let the Sun Shine
Strategically place the roof to collect the most sunlight from solar panels. Frequently, a simple rotation can impact the amount of solar energy collected. Your electrician can help you build a battery station that stores energy for future use. With the correct setup, you can even charge your electric vehicles. Many homeowners sell unused solar energy to utility companies.

Incorporating any number of these techniques into your construction will have financial and environmental benefits. Your builder can help you make the most cost-efficient choices for your home.

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