What Makes Our Homes Green?
During the construction of our homes, we follow a set of strict guidelines outlined by the National Green Building Standard (ANSI approved ICC 700-2008) which is administered by the NAHB Research Center. To achieve our Certified Green designation, we must obtain a minimum number of "points" in six categories. Independent verifiers who are trained and licensed through the NAHB Research Center inspect our homes multiple times to ensure compliance with the "points" we have claimed. The six categories are:
1. Lot Design, Preparation and Development
2. Resource Efficiency
3. Energy Efficiency
4. Water Efficiency
5. Indoor Environmental Quality
6. Operation and Maintenance
What's The Big Deal About Green Homes and Why Should I Purchase One? Most people think that owning a green home means sacrificing comfort and amenities or spending more money to save the planet. This couldn't be further from the truth. A quick stroll through one of our homes should convince you that there is no sacrifice in amenities. While saving the planet is a noble cause and is something we should pay attention to, it's not the primary reason to own a green home. Simply put, a green home is better built than the average code-built home. It costs less to own and operate because of the energy and water saving features and also because the processes and materials used will help the home last longer and require less maintenance over its lifetime. The upfront cost of our certified green homes is less than 5% on average and the savings on utilities alone are arguably more than the additional monthly payment. Couple those savings with lower maintenance costs and it should actually cost less to live in a certified green home over a traditional code-built home. There are also intangibles like indoor comfort, air quality and resale value which should all be better in a certified green home and by the way, it is better for the planet as well! One way to think about this is a code-built home, which comprises the majority of new homes, is the worst home you can build by law. It's the least efficient, least durable, least sustainable new home you can buy.
Why Should I Consider A Certified Green Home Over One That Isn't Certified?
There are quality builders out there who advertise that they build a green home and in some cases, they actually do. Since the word "green" has become so popular, many have jumped on the bandwagon and claim to be green when in fact, they're not really. How will you know that you're getting what your builder is advertising? The National Green Building Standard defines which materials, practices, and features constitute a true "Green Home" so everyone is held to the same standard. Independent verifiers inspect our homes to ensure that we haven't missed any steps or done something wrong. As a quality builder, we appreciate this extra set of trained eyes because we're human and will miss things sometimes. It's important to us to do what we say we're going to do. The independent inspections also help keep everyone honest. The NAHB Research Center is very motivated to make sure their certification "brand" means something to consumers so they hold their builders to strict standards. This could be an important selling point for you one day when it comes time to sell your home.