Mark Fountaine April 7, 2018
green building

Want a newly built home? Chances are, you’re thinking about location and where to secure land for the home, and you’re thinking about the design.

But have you thought about going green?

It’s definitely an idea worth exploring. Green construction is increasingly popular for not only single-family homes, but also builders of multifamily units as well.

Research published in the Green Multifamily and Single-Family Homes 2017 SmartMarket Brief by Dodge Data & Analytics and the National Association of Home Builders demonstrate not only the benefits of green building, but also the fact that it helps save money.

That’s why a growing number of developers are incorporating green concepts into the design and construction of new homes. The SmartMarket Brief study showed that green building now makes up a large share of the portfolio of single family and multifamily homes builders – up to 60% of their activity. This is no longer a niche business and has become quite mainstream among builders today.

So what defines a green home? And how can someone who wants a new home built get assurances that it will be constructed in a green manner?

Characteristics of green homes

The SmartMarket brief research indicates that market factors as much as anything else are pushing builders toward going green. That includes increased customer demand for environmentally sensitive homes, the ready availability of green products, and the increasing affordability, courtesy of the incentives provided by the state or federal government for going green.

In addition, it’s become clear that property appraisers increasingly recognize the higher value in those green homes.

One of the top goals for a green home is the ability to increase your energy efficiency. That can include using renewable technologies like solar photovoltaic panels in the overall design of the home.

The U.S. Department of Energy has even created a Home Energy Score to grade the energy efficiency of a home based on its structure and heating, cooling, and hot water systems. Improving the energy efficiency of your home will help you save money in the long run.

The department recommends a whole-house systems approach, and even working with an energy auditor on designing it.
And a second goal is to create a healthy indoor living environment.

So how do you set the standards for a green home? There are several ideas you can request. On way to keep your home cooler is to ask that your home be built to minimize sun exposure during the afternoon and evening hours.
 

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