As a Realtor® GREEN and co-leader of the Contrada Real Estate Team, I would like to begin this blogging series on creating a healthier, more environmentally friendly home with the Keller Williams Real Estate Guide, Green Your Home: Healthy, Money-Smart and Sustainable Living Begins at Home (2011).
Green Your Home: Healthy, Money-Smart and Sustainable Living Begins at Home presents “the collective experience of green-conscious home buyers and homeowners, sustainability experts across North America and thousands of top real estate professionals.” The guide’s target readership includes home owners and buyers, as well as real estate professionals.
Your Home and Grounds as an Opportunity to Promote Health and Well-Being
To green your home is “a quality-of-life choice”, “a necessary step to protect our planet and its resources for future generations”. The sum of our choices defines our quality of life. Is the way we conduct our day-to-day lives healthy and fulfilling? How are each of our choices affecting the natural environment and human society -- for good or for ill?
Your home – house, yard and gardens – is more than real property and its worth extends beyond economic value. In your home setting, you can change into comfortable clothing, interact with your loved ones, cultivate your inner life and engage in your favorite avocations. When you entertain, you welcome others into your home and include them in the most hospitable environment you can create. Your home should be as beautiful, warm and cozy as possible for these purposes. Greening your home artistically helps you achieve this.
You also want your home to be safe and secure. You want to create a clean and healthy home environment, as free of pollutants as possible, both from within its walls as well as from the outer world. Since your home interacts with the natural world and your neighborhood community, exchanging materials and energies, you will want to pay attention to factors within your home and grounds as well as in the surrounding environment. Greening your home scientifically helps you achieve this.
WE CAN positively affect the health and well-being, the quality of life, of ourselves as individuals, as families and as communities. The power is ours to recognize, mobilize and use wisely.
Heart, Hearth, Home
The Contrada Real Estate Team at Keller Williams promotes the values of heart, hearth and home. In our view, if we are to survive and thrive, we must bring Light and Warmth into our hearts, into our relationships with family and friends, and into the atmospheres of our homes and gardens.
In German the word Gemütlichkeit is without a precise English equivalent. It conveys the ideas of safety, comfort and enjoyment in a cozy, warm environment. If we are attentive to the health of our bodies and psyches, homes and natural environments, we will experience this Gemütlichkeit. We will be at ease rather than ill-at-ease or dis-eased. Many of us instinctively know this, but are grateful for frequent reminders and practical suggestions. There are so many demands on our time and distracting influences.
WE CAN learn new ways of living and contribute thus to creating a healthier, happier world. Our efforts can begin with a series of small steps. As we note positive results, we may feel motivated to increase our investments of time, energy and money to attain even greater results in larger spheres of influence.
Green Your Home: Healthy, Money-Smart and Sustainable Living Begins at Home (2011) provides a useful guide, filled with actionable steps, for both the beginner and the more advanced practitioner of sustainable living. As you follow the practical suggestions, we believe you will gain in health, wealth and happiness.
-- Joseph M. Contrada