Owning a home is the ultimate American dream, and for some of us, we get to go one step ahead and build the home of our dreams. The newest trend is to build green by using materials that are environment friendly, designing spaces to utilize energy more efficiently, furnishing your home with Energy Star rated appliances, avoiding wastage and using natural resources as much as possible. There?s the double advantage of doing your bit to help the environment and cutting back on your own electricity and utility bills. If you?re looking for tips, plans and pointers as you contemplate the green home you?ve always desired, here are a few websites that offer help:
- Green Home Guide: Maintained by the United States Green Building Council, this site offers comprehensive information on green home programs, green remodeling guidelines, how to live green and other resources. Learn how you can get your home LEED certified and other interesting facts here. (The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards which were developed as early as the turn of the century by the United States Green Building Council in order to create the ?world?s greenest buildings? awards points in order to certify a building gold or platinum ? energy efficiency rates 17 points, water savings add up to 5 points and indoor environment gets up to 15 points; a total of 39 earns a gold star while a platinum branding needs at least 52 points).
- Green Home Building: This site offers a treasure trove of information, plans, designs and other resources that help when you?re starting to come up with ideas for your green home. Besides sustainable designs (eco friendly), you also have vernacular options that focus on local architecture, indigenous material and talent. You can seek expert opinion or buy building codes and other resources.
- Green Building: This building tells you how a green home should be constructed and offers links to professionals in the field. Learn how to go about a green remodeling project or talk to experts on energy to see how your home can benefit.
- Green is Universal: Besides the usual resources to help build sustainable and eco friendly homes that you find on other sites, this one offers a virtual reality exercise where you can play at building your own green home online.
- Building Green: This site offers a live feed of all the news related to green building from all around the world. Other links offer access to green projects, products and articles.
This article is contributed by Sarah Scrafford, who regularly writes on the topic of international home listings. She invites your questions, comments and freelancing job inquiries at her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.