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Top 15 Eco-Friendly Building Trends

by on Jul 3, 2007

This month’s installment of REALTOR® Magazine Online includes the top fifteen green home building trends. In no particular order, they are:

Copper Roofs. Copper roofs and their alloys can last 100+ years and are recyclable.

Timber Framing. Timber framing, which generally includes the use of SIPS (superior insulating panels), uses less lumber and generates less waste.

Low-E Windows. Low-emittance windows block UV rays from entering a house, which heat its interior and fades its decorative contents.

Rainwater Holding Tanks. Rainwater runoff, captured in holding tanks via roofs and gutters, can feed a sprinkler system or may be filtered for indoor plumbing use.

LED Lighting. Light emitting diodes provide chemical free lighting and use 80% less energy than a standard incandescent bulb.

Green Toilets. Good for the environment and your budget, water-conserving toilets use 20 % less water per flush and can save 30 to 50% on your annual water bill.

Solar Orientation. Orientating new construction in the proper direction can curtail the amount of heat and cold that enters a home, thus reducing heating and cooling costs and energy consumption.

Induction Cook Tops. Coils of an induction cook top emit heat directly into the bottom of cookware, which results in less energy wasted in the cooking process.

Geothermal Heating and Cooling. Using the earth as a heat exchanger can cost twice as much as a traditional heating and cooling system in initial installation, but can also pay for itself in as little as five years.

Attic Heat Blocker. High-tech heat blockers made of aluminum foil that has been laminated onto oriented strand board, can reduce an attic’s temperature by 30 degrees, which translates into reduced energy consumption and costs.

Reclaimed Wood Counter Tops. Fast-growing plants such as bamboo as well as reclaimed wood are gaining popularity and new life as chic counter tops.

Nontoxic Paint. Shunning VOC’s (Volatile Organic Components), a turn to nontoxic paint keeps indoor air clean and keeps pollutants out of landfills.

Formaldehyde-free Insulation. Many building products, such as insulation, release chemicals with which they are made thus effecting indoor air quality.

Smart Irrigation Systems. Smart sprinkler systems are controlled via satellite that sends current weather conditions to the system’s ‘brain’, eliminating needless watering.

Green Furniture. Salvaged wood from structures slated for tear down is spared a trip to a landfill and is becoming material for furniture, extending its life and usefulness.

For more information concerning these 15 top green building trends, visit REALTOR® Magazine Online.


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