Green Home Plans
In these days of soaring energy costs and worry over pollution and climate change, the easiest way to alleviate these problems is to simply live more efficiently. Designing and building a green house saves: it saves lots of energy, which in turn saves the homeowner lots of money. And designing for maximum efficiency and sustainability is all we do here at Green Home Source.
Green Home Plans
Green House Plans From Green Home Source
The Green Home: If You Can Dream It, You Can Build It
If your idea of a 'green house' is a yurt in the woods or a home buried in a hillside, it's time for an update. Using the latest design technologies and cutting edge materials, virtually any type or style of home can be designed to fit into the 'green' category, and built just about anywhere.
Having a super-efficient home means much more than replacing some incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs, or buying a more efficient refrigerator. For an older existing house, these steps (and many more) are very important to improve the home's efficiency over time. Building a brand new home, however, takes energy efficiency and environmental sustainability into account in every little detail, from the ground to the top of the roof.
Green Home Plans - Energy Efficiency
As mentioned, the main criteria for any green house plan should always be energy efficiency. A well-designed house will use as little energy as possible; in fact, under the right conditions, a green house plan can sometimes use no energy at all.
With energy efficient design and materials, a green house minimizes the use of our planet's finite (and polluting) natural resources such as coal or oil. Going further, a green house can incorporate renewable energy resources such as solar or wind to supplement or replace these traditional energy sources.
By consuming less energy, your green house is saving resources, and saving money every month with lower utility bills. On a global scale, your green house is doing its small part to help make the world a cleaner, healthier place.
Green Home Plans - Resource Efficiency
Green house plans also have to take into consideration the amount of resources needed in its construction. By incorporating building products that contain recycled materials or are made from rapidly renewable materials greatly reduces the house's environmental impact.
Working to minimize construction waste and making sure as much of the building's materials can be reused or recycled after its lifespan is also critical to reduce the house's impacts.
Another important way to reduce a green house's impact on resources is to simply design a smaller home. A well laid-out house plan can give you all of the livable space you need to be comfortable while using less resources. Green Home Source designs homes to be as efficient space-wise as possible, with smaller footprints or larger homes to accommodate larger families.
Green Home Plans - Water Efficiency
Water is another natural resource that is finite, and a well-designed green house can greatly lower the amount of this precious resource used on a daily basis, both inside and outside the house.
Incorporating the use of the most water efficient appliances is mandatory with any Green Home Source house plan. From washing machines to shower heads to toilets, there are amazing products available today that use much less water than the same items of just a few years ago; all without sacrificing comfort or performance.
A house's greatest water usage can take place outside the home in the form of lawn or landscape irrigation. With thoughtful planning, choosing the right types of plants, and efficient irrigation, you can save enormous amounts of water while still having beautiful outdoor living spaces to enjoy.
Improved water efficiency saves more than water; when you reduce water consumption in and out of the house, you save money; lower water bills, and less water that needs to be heated for washing or cleaning.
Green Home Plans - Improved Indoor Air Quality
Indoor Air Quality
Studies have shown that the air quality inside a house can often be many times worse than outdoor air. With increasing numbers of people with allergies and respiratory problems like asthma, making sure your house's indoor air is as clean as possible is important.
A green house design reduces the amount of potential indoor sources of pollutants and improves the ventilation of fresh air throughout the house. The result? A comfortable inside environment that enhances its livability and sustainability.
Green Home Source house plans mandate the use of products such as paints and varnishes with low VOCs (volatile organic compounds), and engineered wood products without formaldehyde-based binders, both of which can lead to irritation or illness. We also call for highly efficient HVAC systems (for heating and cooling) that deliver ample amounts of clean, fresh air to living areas while using as little energy as possible.
How Can I Identify a Green Home Plan?
Building 'green' is a promise made by many builders today; making sure your house really is being designed and built as sustainably as possible can be tricky. There are national programs that certify a structure after it has been built, such as LEED for Homes or the NAHB Green Building Program. But how do you know ahead of time that your house plan is green? You have to consider, and trust, the source.
And that is why Green-Home-Source is here. Each of our plans are either pre-certified as a "Designed to earn the Energy Star" or have met the criteria of our own ETHOS home guidelines. It is very important to know a plan was developed incorporating green characteristics from the start because green is a better way to build.
How Do I Know If a Home Plan is Green?
Based on what is required by our national and local codes, each plan that is produced is required to meet a basic standard. Now remember or note that your local building and national codes are all minimum standards. So just because you have a brand new home or even a home that has been built in the last 5 years does not mean you have a home that is energy efficient or even healthy.
At Green Home Source, we have been designing structures to be as efficient and sustainable as possible for decades, before it was called 'green design.' All of our house plans are pre-certified as "Designed to earn the Energy Star Rating" or have met the criteria of our own ETHOS (Efficienty Thought-out Home, Operating Sustainably) guidelines. It's very important and reassuring to know that a house plan was developed not only for its beauty, but also to incorporate efficiency and sustainability, before pen meets paper.
A Green House Plan is a Superior House Plan
Every house built in the U.S. has to meet certain national and local building codes. It is important to note that these building codes are all minimum standards. Designing and building 'to code' doesn't necessarily mean your house is energy efficient or healthy.
Oftentimes, people think because the house is brand new it incorporates the latest up-to-date technologies and state of the art energy savings. This isn't always the case; a brand new home simply has to meet the minimum code requirements in order to pass inspection. That can often mean a house that is inefficient, high maintenance, poorly insulated and drafty.
A green house plan from Green Home Source, incorporating our ETHOS requirements, goes far above and beyond minimum standards. In every area of design and construction, our houses will save you money with much lower utility bills and a healthy, comfortable living environment. Our high standards also guarantee that your house will have the lowest impact on the environment as possible.
We are proud to offer a selection of these green house plans in our Green Home Plan Catalog. Our plans also offer links to articles that will explain, in easy to understand language, how each section of the house has been designed to be green, as well as links to products that we recommend for maximum environmental benefit.comments powered by Disqus