Coastal Living

Energy-efficient homes save money and resources.


Earth-Friendly Flooring

These five earth-friendly flooring options are not only good for the environment, but also durable, stylish, and good for your home. » See Photos

Energy-Efficient Exteriors

Bring these energy-efficient ideas outside to save money around your home’s exterior. » See Photos

Many kitchen appliances these days are energy efficient. Our Favorite Energy-Saving Appliances

Energy-efficient appliances save money and use fewer natural resources. We’ve chosen some stylish examples, demonstrating you needn’t sacrifice style or functionality for efficiency. » See Photos

REUSE, REDUCE, RECYCLE

Planning
Build for your region. Learn about your environment when designing and planning a green home. For example, light-color exteriors reflect heat from the sun, benefiting homes in warmer regions. Alternately, darker exteriors absorb heat for warmth in cold climates.

Build to suit your site. Instead of clear-cutting a lot, use existing trees for passive solar heating and cooling. You also can position your house so that low-angled rays from the winter sun will flood south-facing rooms, reducing dependence on expensive sources of energy.

Construction
Choose materials wisely. Conservationist attitudes and economic efficiency guide green construction. Build with sustainable woods and recycled, reusable, and durable materials.

Minimize waste. Take advantage of local salvage companies to remove reusable construction waste, and ask your contractor about recycling options.

Daily Life
Go for the savings. Superior insulation and energy-efficient appliances will significantly cut energy costs throughout the life of your home.

Conserve resources. Use drought-resistant plants and adequate drainage systems outdoors, and efficient pipe systems and sink and faucet aerators indoors.

Stay healthy. The air quality inside green homes is often far superior to that of conventional homes. Low- or no-VOC (volatile organic compound) paints and nontoxic insulation and flooring, for example, can cause fewer allergies, asthma problems, and skin sensitivities.

Want to learn more about green homes? Check out these Web sites:
National Association of Home Builders
U.S. Green Building Council
Greener Buildings
Northwest EcoBuilding Guild

Not sure if you can recycle something?
Call 1-800-732-9253.

For a Reusable Building Materials Exchange, check out the 2Good2Toss project.


By

Allen Bunting



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