In talking with people about “green homes,” it often becomes apparent that the meaning of “green” can be very different from one person to another. As a start, it can be about energy efficiency features and attributes of a home. There are other factors such as design, orientation, and location can contribute significantly to the “greenness” of a home.
These days, my own understanding of a green home relates more to how the home and its occupants interact together to make up a total “green home experience."
I'm a big picture person, so I like to stand back and take a broad view of things. An internet search of the meaning of the color "green" provides a variety of symbolic meanings that society has attached to the color. To me, these symbolic meanings fall into three categories: People, Planet, and Prosperity.
People. In the “people” category, green symbolizes health, balance, safety, relaxation, and renewal. For me, those words conjures up a mental picture of the ideal home – a safe and healthy place to relax, unwind, rejuvenate, play, interact with family and friends, and restore balance in our lives.
A green home is one that has been designed and built to provide a healthy indoor environment, by proper sealing, fresh air intake, moisture barriers to minimize mold and other problems, and avoiding the use of materials that produce toxic gases. You may not realize that many conventionally built homes provide a harmful indoor environment; in fact, the rise in the incidence of allergies and asthma is often attributed to poor indoor air quality!
A green home is one that is designed to maximize the use and enjoyment of all living spaces to fit the way people live. It has flexible spaces that can be used for various purposes, without excess space that never gets utilized. A green home is one that enhances your comfort, enjoyment and lifestyle.
Planet. The color green symbolizes life, nature, and the environment. A green home is one that is good to the environment, conserving natural resources and minimizing waste. That seems like a good thing to me….it’s just making sure that, while we are enjoying our homes today, there are enough resources left for our children and grandchildren to enjoy theirs to the same extent.
Prosperity. Green is used to symbolize prosperity, money and profitability. A green home is one that fits within the family’s budget and doesn’t put a strain on their resources or lifestyle. By using readily available (and affordable) technology for energy and water efficiency, a green home minimizes the cost of home ownership. It can save up to 100% of typical energy costs and pay back hundreds or even thousands of dollars every year. To me, a home that allows me to spend my money on fun things like entertainment and recreation rather than paying utility bills is the ultimate dream home!
So, in short, a green home is the home that offers the most of what each of us wants or needs from our home, including staying within our budget. Based on that definition, I picture all homes on a spectrum of more green versus less green. Every existing home can be made to be more green. Every new home can (and should be!) be designed and constructed to be more green – to offer the best home experience that current resources, knowledge, technology and budget allows. Check out this great solar, green home for sale in Las Cruces, NM, where the sun shines 350 days out of the year and powers all the electricity needs of this home!
Click this photo to see more information about this wonderful, green home home for sale in Las Cruces. This is a solar home that makes its own electricity from the sun. It not only saves money, but gets money back from the electric company every month!
I look forward to continuing conversations about the green home experience!