Abstract: Roberts Creek Home Inspector notes on what features distinguish environmentally friendly homes from conventionally built houses. Be prepared to pay a premium for green technology, but it’s worth it.
Sometimes the standards of construction are so noteworthy that we have to pause and acknowledge the owners for choosing a higher standard for their build. Last week we inspected a green built home, built almost a decade ago. Some of the features included:
- A healthier interior environment by not using any material noted for off-gassing, that is, the release of VOC (volitile organic compounds).
- A lower environmental imact construction by using renewable material (wood, stone, manoleum, bamboo).
- Energy efficient heat pump for in-floor radiant hot water heating and domestic hot water.
- Insulated to a higher standard the footings, foundations, walls, ceilings and windows.
- Minimizing magnetic fields by using shielded wiring.
- Eliminating mold generating material such as paper surfaced drywall.
- Replacing drywall compound with natural clay.
- Built with selectively chosen long service life components.
The benefits to the buyers are many, including: reduced monthly operating costs; increased durability resulting in less need for expensive repairs or renovations; a healthier environment; and, a very comfortable living experience.
A decade after this house was built, its construction standards are still far ahead of even the current practices. Well done!