Sustainable building practices are the key to creating environmentally-friendly homes that can help reduce the eventual owner's carbon footprint and also help them save money on energy expenses. The basics of sustainable housing range from ensuring energy efficient designs that consider home orientation, flexibility, size and using Eco-friendly materials whenever possible. Here are some things to consider when it comes to effective green home building practices.
Solar Ready Home Construction
Builders that are considering adding a photovoltaic system to newly-constructed homes can save a bit of time and money by using solar-ready design standards. By integrating mechanical and electrical features during the construction phase, builders can streamline the integration of solar panel systems. Some essential considerations include:
- Roof load bearing limitations
- Roof orientation and pitch
- Ensuring ample space and access to circuit breakers, main conduits and electrical panels for inverters while designating mounting points for solar equipment
- Layout of chimneys, roof vents and awnings to prevent shading
Home Orientation and Insulation
When considering sustainable building practices, it's essential to consider situating the home in such a way to take advantage of the sun rising in the east and setting in the west. To maximize on solar gain and passive energy, part of the home with the longest dimensions should face the south to absorb more of the sun's rays. Properly insulating the home is the key to truly getting the most out of solar sustainable building practices, as no amount of energy efficient practices can compensate for poor insulation.
Home Size Considerations
One of the basics of sustainable housing and building practices is to design a home of an appropriate size. Smaller homes with energy efficient systems, like solar panels, are more efficient and green all around, as there is less need for energy use, construction costs are lower, fewer materials are used, taxes are less for owners and there is much less cleaning necessitated. Builders should consult with local real estate professionals concerning the sizes of homes that buyers are in the market for and plan designs accordingly.
Flexible House Construction
Building homes in Goodlettsville or elsewhere with the fact in mind that families change over time is what is known as developing flexible housing that simplifies future renovations. This means less environmental and financial costs by anticipating needs that may arise later on such as adding an additional bedroom, bathroom or determining where a mother-in-law quarters may reside. While building, contractors can run needed wiring, plumbing and address framing issues to prevent major disruptions when these changes are necessary. These added features are also appealing to buyers, especially those looking for resale features.
Use Local and Reclaimed Materials
Become a part of the green building trend with the design phase by incorporating as many existing and reclaimed building materials as possible. Knowing the materials that will be used beforehand can save aggravation, as it will eliminate the need for architectural changes during the building phase if certain materials don't fit into the end design plans. Furthermore, using these materials is one of the most Eco-friendly building practices that contractors need to keep in mind.
Need more information concerning sustainable housing construction and its desirability with buyers and investors? Contact a local real estate professional to learn more about the role of green building in your area.
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