What is Green Building?
Green building is a construction process that focuses on sustainability in every aspect of building. Instead of focusing on the profitability of a building for one party — like the builder or the new owner — green building takes into account the long and short-term effects of the building on all parties — the builder, the owner, and the surrounding environment.
For example, in a more traditional method of building, a builder may scrimp on insulation to save costs during the build. While this might be more profitable for the builder and offer the home at a lower cost to the owner, the owner will have to pay more in the long term to heat and cool the house. This also has adverse effects on the environment, as the owner uses more electricity than they would if their home was well-insulated.
Green building takes all of these aspects of building into consideration, to create a building that is sustainable for all parties, and especially for the environment.
Elements of Green Building in Asheville, NC
If you’re interested in green building here in North Carolina, you might be wondering what all goes into a “green” or sustainably built home. As green builders ourselves, we’re going to fill you in on what to expect from a green build here in Asheville, NC.
Energy Efficient Design
As you might expect, energy efficiency is a top priority for any green building. Green buildings do implement energy-efficient products and appliances, but there’s more to it than just Energy Star products. Green architects also take the positioning and design of the building itself into account to make it as energy-efficient as possible. For example, it’s often much cooler up here in the mountains of Asheville, so our architects design our homes to make the most of natural sunlight to help keep homes warm in the winter.
Green building also extends farther than just the design and build of the home itself. True green building takes into account every aspect of the new building, from planning and sourcing materials to how the project will be completed. One key element of green building is making use of responsibly-sourced materials that do not harm the environment or make use of poor business practices that exploit employees. Green builders scrutinize every product they use to ensure that they are good for the environment, and for the world.
Development that Preserves the Natural Environment
Another key goal of green building is to minimize any disruption to the natural environment. This extends to the way a building is constructed as well as the way that the building is situated on the lot. Here at High Hickory, our homes are built to blend into the natural environment, and we work to make sure our construction process disturbs the surrounding environment as little as possible. You’ll find that our homes match the natural topography of the mountain land around us, and incorporate the land’s natural features, rather than bulldozing over them to make more room for houses.
Benefits of Green Building in Asheville, NC
Now that we have a pretty clear picture of what green building is — why do it? Why are so many homeowners turning to green building over other, potentially faster building methods? Here are a few of the benefits that come with green building:
The building process can develop a lot of waste. From excess material to all of the packaging that comes with new appliances, home building parts, and even the fuel used to ship materials to your build site, that’s a lot of waste that’s contributing negatively to our environment. With green building, ethical, responsible material sourcing and sustainable building practices work to minimize this waste. By purchasing responsible materials locally, you reduce fuel waste, and you invest in products that aren’t harmful to the environment.
Provides a Healthy Environment For You
One of the most direct benefits for green homeowners is a healthy environment to live in. When your home is built sustainably, and with responsible materials, you don’t have to worry about harmful chemicals or poor air quality. You can rest assured knowing that your new home is a safe, healthy place for you and your family to live.
Minimal Disruption to the Natural Surrounding Environment
As humans continue to expand across the earth, our impact becomes greater on the natural spaces around us. Green building provides a way of building that lessens that impact on the natural spaces that we so love and appreciate. When you live in a green home, you can feel good knowing that your home’s construction disrupted your natural ecosystem as little as possible.
Decreases Energy Use
Green buildings reduce your energy consumption significantly. This is good for two reasons: 1) you pay less overall on those utility bills, and 2) you’re reducing your carbon footprint. Using less energy is good for you and for the environment. And again, because green buildings work to take advantage of natural sunlight and shade, you’ll be perfectly cozy in the winter and nice and cool in the summer.
Green building is a concept near and dear to the community at High Hickory. Here, all of our properties are built using green building standards, and we strive to foster a community that embraces and molds to the environment around us. Find out more about our green, sustainable community today.