Sunday, March 02, 2008

Green Homes offer high return on investment

This year in 2008 we see the green sustainable design, finally arousing interest in home builders in northeast USA. Many home builders in western USA have been doing this for some times but our experience in Upstate New York still finds many builders on the side line. Very few have made the decision to seriously consider building green homes in their sub-division. Profit and return on investment is key to any private business. Similarly the cost of operation and maintenance is important to the home owners and builders with green vision can benefit by marketing these features. Who does not want to be free from future cost of energy and live in healthy environment.

Considering the rising energy costs and climate change issue the homes of the future must be designed to maximize the use of free natural resources and consume least amount of energy and water to operate. That is what Green homes are all about.

Many financial incentives offered by Federal and State must be used to make the green homes a great investment for the buyer. Since the upfront cost of some of the green features adds to traditional design cost, the builder should seek grants, tax credits and any local government incentives to reduce the net cost of such features. Assuming the payback of 3 years, the buyer must be made aware that after 3 years all of savings in operational costs are theirs to keep for rest of the life of the home.

Imagine investing in high thermal efficiency, day lighting, LED lights, geothermal heating system etc. and living in a house where your average energy bill is $100 per month and does not change with the price of oil or natural gas?? who would not buy such a home and when it comes time to sell you are in better position when you compete with homes that are old design and paying $300+ for heating costs. That is why we believe that Green Homes offer the best return on investment.

We are fortunate to be working on two small housing projects in Rochester, NY to prove that this is not just a theory but a very real example of sustainability.

Ram

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