Monthly Archives: June 2011

What’s Wrong With The Way Regular Houses Are Built?

One word: Waste. It would be ridiculous to suggest that every house constructed in advance of the green-building boom is substandard, although some of them clearly are. There are many New England farmhouses entering their third century of service that … Continue reading

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Are green houses designed any differently?

Yes, or at least they should be Here’s how it works with conventional construction: an architect draws up plans, which are turned into construction drawings. A general contractor hires a series of subcontractors, each with a specialty. Some of the … Continue reading

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Do Green Houses Have to Look Weird?

In a word, no. But they can if you want them to. The boom in passive solar design during the 1970s encouraged lots of owner-builders to construct energy-efficient houses. Some excellent books on energy conservation and building theory were published … Continue reading

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What Is Green Certification, And How Does It Work?

A certified home meets certain construction standards that should translate into increased energy conservation, healthy indoor air and lower operating costs. There is not, however, a single government or private agency that doles out certifications—and that’s where it can get … Continue reading

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Can Houses be “Too Insulated ” or “Too Tight”?

No. Green homes are insulated well, tightly built, and well ventilated Let’s take these issues one at a time. The “too tight” theory holds that houses need to breathe. Traditionalists can point to old houses and claim the only reason … Continue reading

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Do I Need A Specialist to Build A Green House?

Anyone can build green, but better builders find the transition easier In theory, any contractor could build a green house because the step-by-step process isn’t dramatically different from the ones used for building any other kind of house. It’s not … Continue reading

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