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Green Rating Systems - 07/31/10 01:25 PM
ABOUT GREEN RATING SYSTEMS Getting a label for your house Green certification can be a valuable marketing tool for builders as U.S. home buyers start to focus more attention on energy efficiency, durability and healthy interiors. Builders who want the advantages of green certification have many options. In addition to the above four programs, dozens of local and regional green building rating programs have been established by local builders' associations. Some have been in operation for more than a decade. LEED for Homes and the National Green Building Standard (NGBS) are alike in how they work and what they cover, and (4 comments)
Green Building Vocabulary Disputes: Watch out — sloppy terminology may earn you a scolding from the word police - 07/30/10 10:39 AM
Unless you're a word junkie, you may roll your eyes at some of the technical disputes listed in the table below. After all, who cares whether WRB stands for "weather-resistant barrier" or "water-resistive barrier"? (Just help me nail up the freakin' housewrap, okay?) For the record, I'm not necessarily in favor of all of the terms in the "preferred" column. Many of these vocabulary disputes are not yet resolved. In the meantime, the words we choose should communicate our meaning clearly. Adopting an unusual (though technically correct) term doesn't improve communication if it leaves the listener or reader confused. (1 comments)
You're stuck. Frozen. Can't seem to move forward. What's stopping you? Is it because you're afraid you might fail? Here are some ways to blast through the blockage and get on with it. You have heard the expression, "Anything worth doing is worth doing well." Here's your new motto: "Anything worth doing is worth being willing to do badly." If something is important to you then you have got to be willing to try it, knowing that you may flop, because sometimes you will. Consider the words of Saint Francis of Assisi: "Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's (1 comments)
Reminder: Oregon Woodstove Law Goes Into Effect August 1st - 07/28/10 03:27 PM
Oregon's new woodstove law designed to protect homebuyers and clear the air of unnecessary wood smoke pollution takes effect on August 1st. The 2009 Oregon Legislature passed Senate Bill 102 which was later signed into law by Governor Kulongoski requires the removal and decommissioning of any uncertified woodstove or insert from a home when it is sold. These uncertified stoves and inserts were manufactured prior to 1986, before emissions certification was required to control smoke from these devices. Residential wood burning is a significant source of air pollution, including fine particulate and air toxics. For more information about this requirement, please (0 comments)
Removing Moisture from Homes with Air Conditioners - 07/28/10 10:51 AM
Air conditioners not only cool homes, they also remove moisture-which is a high priority in many parts of the country To understand moisture removal, it's important to brush up on a bit of physics. Air is able to hold only a finite amount of water vapor, and that amount is governed by the temperature of the air. Warm air can hold more moisture than cool air. This is why water droplets appear on that cold glass of iced tea: the outer surface of the glass is cold so the air close to the glass cools off and the amount of moisture (1 comments)
3 Things you should Never Say to your Customer - 07/27/10 12:59 PM
•1. I was in the area and thought I'd drop by/call - Meet or call your customer only when you have something useful or important to give or share. Unless you two are buddies don't do that. •2. I'm not sure about that - You can instead respond by saying "give me x hours/days and I'll get back to you with an answer". This shows that you are taking your customer's concern seriously and want to help. •3. It's not my fault - You are the customer's only contact in the company. Even if it isn't your fault, its your responsibility (5 comments)
What's the Difference: Deck stain - 07/26/10 09:30 PM
Most stains are engineered to color and protect wood in a single coat and are available in oil-based, water-based, and water-based epoxy-fortified mixtures. Deck stain keeps new wood looking good and helps to refurbish old, weathered boards. Stain shouldn't be confused with deck sealer, though. Terminology differs slightly among manufacturers, but sealers generally impart little or no color to wood. They simply seal it against air and moisture. Stains, which perform better than sealers, use pigments that add color to wood. Although the intended purpose of applying a deck stain may be only to return a deck to its natural tone, it's (1 comments)
Are Tankless Water Heaters Really Green? - 07/26/10 10:49 AM
Instant water heaters don't have the standby losses of storage units, but when the result is an 'endless supply of hot water' real savings are dubious.
Tankless water heaters have one advantage over conventional storage units: no standby losses. Instead of keeping water hot around the clock, regardless of whether it's actually needed, tankless units heat water only when a tap or an appliance is turned on. By rights, this should mean lower energy consumption, a decidedly green advantage. But where are the savings when you can't get your kids out of the shower? "I know we waste more water, (5 comments)
Cooling Your Home Without A/C - 07/23/10 11:14 AM
As summer sets in, so does the increase to our energy bills because A/Cs are often turned on so we all need to find new ways to keep the house cool without wasting energy. You can save money and conserve energy by keeping your home naturally cool without using air-conditioning. Here are some helpful tips to keep your home cool during the hot season. Let the Cool Air In - When the day cools off, open doors and windows to allow the cool air to circulate through the rooms of your home. Turn on fans to create a cross-breeze, circulating the (3 comments)
MORE ABOUT OUTDOOR ADD-ONS - 07/21/10 10:35 AM
LAYOUT/SPACE PLANNING SiteDisturb the site as little as possible. Modify landscaping to improve solar access. Choose porous surfaces to improve water infiltration and reduce runoff. Reduce the size of the lawn and choose plantings that don't need extra water, weed killers or insecticides. Consider a rainwater collection system (even a simple one) for garden and yard use. Where possible, make room for a vegetable garden. Outdoor structuresTry to reuse existing materials. Consider a ground-level patio rather than a wood deck (it lasts longer with less maintenance). Use environmentally friendly materials. When building a deck, detail the connection between the house and (0 comments)
Remodel Project: Outdoor Add-Ons - 07/21/10 10:33 AM
A Good Design Can Have High Utility and Low Environmental Impact Use Durable Materials Improving outdoor living spaces can bring many rewards to homeowners, not least of which is a closer connection to natural surroundings. Landscaping and gardening don't have to be expensive, but remember that durable and green materials are key when building for the outdoors. Outdoor rooms increase a home's livabilityAppealing outdoor spaces can relieve pressure on a home's interior. For example, a covered porch may reduce the need for enlarging indoor entertainment areas. An outdoor kitchen can help lower cooling bills in warmer weather. Outdoor designs can include (0 comments)
Four steps to green remodeling - 07/20/10 10:48 AM
Step 1: Get an energy audit Making a remodeled house more energy efficient should be a top priority, and coming up with a plan begins with an energy audit. The beauty of this relatively inexpensive battery of scientific tests is that it will pinpoint and measure a house's energy deficiencies. A detailed inspection will uncover air leaks, equipment inefficiencies, inadequate insulation and other structural shortcomings that together add up to a drafty, uncomfortable and ultimately wasteful house. Energy audits range from unscientific walk-throughs taking a few hours to more detailed examinations aided by diagnostic equipment. Utilities may provide them for free. (0 comments)
Controlling Humidity - 07/19/10 10:47 AM
The first step in controlling unwanted summer humidity should be eliminating sources of moisture in the home High relative humidity is a significant problem in many regions of the country during the summer months. In hot weather, the higher the humidity, the less comfortable we are--partly because moisture does not evaporate from our skin as readily. More worrisome over the long haul, high humidity levels in the air and high moisture content of materials in our homes can result in mold growth, which, in turn, can cause allergies and other health problems (as well as damage the building itself). There are (1 comments)
The DOE Showerhead Rule: Someone is all wet - 07/19/10 10:40 AM
New proposed federal rule interpretation defining showerheads more restrictively has both plumbing manufacturers and water conservationists up in arms You would think that establishing a definition for "showerhead" would be simple. But, as the Department of Energy (DOE) is discovering after issuing a draft interpretive rule on the matter, nothing is simple when it comes to getting people wet. Some showerhead backgroundBack in early 1994, under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975, all showerheads manufactured in the U.S. could have a maximum flow no greater than 2.5 gallons per minute (gpm) at 80 psi. The intent, of course, (0 comments)
Congress Approves Home Buyer Tax Credit Extension - 07/01/10 10:30 AM
I'm glad they extended it for the people already in the pipeline for the credit and I'm very impressed that they passed it by itself instead of with more pork like they usually do. Here's a link to one of the many stories. http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2010/07/01/congress-approves-tax-credit-closing-deadline-extension/
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.