Your Eco-friendly Home: Buying, Building, or Remodeling Green

Author(s): Sid Davis

Second Hand Home Architecture, Design and Building

With thousands of new eco-minded houses being built, and the real estate market becoming more attuned to home-buyers' interests, demand for ecologically efficient living spaces is still exceeding the supply. Yet few resources exist for those wanting to build, buy, or remodel their own home to use less energy and be environmentally sensitive. This practical, reader-friendly guide gives readers all the guidance they need to easily become ecologically responsible homeowners.

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"Clear, understandable language brings readers up to speed on green real estate concepts that could otherwise be tricky for beginners."

The Sierra Club's Green Life Blog

Sid Davis is the owner of Sid Davis & Associates, a real estate firm. He is the author of The First-Time Homeowner's Survival Guide (978-0-8144- 7372-6), A Survival Guide for Buying a Home (978-0-8144-7196-8), A Survival Guide to Selling a Home (978-0-8144-7274-3), Home Makeovers that Sell (978-0- 8144-7373-3), and numerous articles in Today's Homeowner, Construction Management Today, and The Los Angeles Times.

CONTENTS Introduction 1 PART 1: FINDING, FINANCING, AND BUYING AN ECO-FRIENDLY HOME 5 Chapter 1: Finding and Qualifying for Eco-Friendly Financing 7 Understanding Leverage, Appreciation, and Equity, 9 Qualifying for a Mortgage, 10 * The Importance of Your Credit Score, 12 * Improving Your Credit Score, 14 * Correcting Credit Problems, 15 * Determining How Big a House Payment You Can Afford, 15 Getting an Energy Efficient Mortgage, 17 * Obtaining a Home Energy Ratings Systems Report, 18 * Shopping for the Best EEM Deal, 20 * Steps to Getting an EEM, 21 * Finding a Lender with the Best Deal, 21 * Avoiding Garbage Fees, 24 * Negotiating Lender Fees, 24 Case Study: How It All Works, 26 Chapter 2: Finding and Working with an Eco-Friendly Agent 29 Finding an Eco-Friendly Agent, 30 * Beginning Your Search, 30 * Narrowing Your Search to an Agent Who Shares Your Dream, 32 * The Buyer's Agency: Who Does the Agent Represent?, 34 Working with Your Agent to Find Green Properties, 36 * Buying a Fixer-Upper, 40 * Buying a Foreclosure to Rehab Can Be Tricky, 41 * Eleven Things to Consider Before Making an Offer, 42 Shopping for an Eco-Friendly Home on Your Own, 43 * Making an Offer on a Home That's For Sale by Owner (FSOB), 45 Chapter 3: Buying a Green Home 49 Learning About Eco-Friendly Homes, 50 Successful Strategies for Making an Offer on a Home, 51 * Deciding What to Offer on a Home, 52 * Handling an Overpriced Home, 54 * Making It Easy for the Seller to Accept Your Offer, 56 * Protecting Yourself When You Make an Offer, 57 Getting the Seller to Pay Concessions, 58 Getting the Seller to Pay All or Part of Your Closing Costs, 60 * Seller Allowances, 61 * Concessions Due to Inspection Problems, 62 * Appraisals and Repairs, 62 * Combining Grants and Seller Concessions, 63 Filling Out the Purchase Agreement Paperwork, 63 Buying a Home Warranty Can Save You Money, 64 * How Home Warranties Work, 65 * What to Look for in a Home Warranty, 65 Taking Advantage of Bank REOs and Short Sales, 66 * Buying REOs, 67 * Short Sales, 68 PART 2. BUILDING AN ECO-FRIENDLY HOME 71 Chapter 4: Finding and Working with a Green Builder 73 What Constitutes a Green Home?, 74 * Minimum Green Building Standards, 74 * Confusion in Green Building Standards, 75 Planning Your Environmentally Friendly Home, 76 * Does It Cost More to Build Green?, 77 * How Much Money Do You Have to Work with?, 78 * Why Use an Architect?, 79 Finding and Working with a Green Architect, 80 * Finding a Green Architect, 80 * Questions to Ask During Your Interviews, 81 Finding and Working with a Green Builder, 82 * Finding a Green Builder, 83 * Questions to Ask During Your Interviews, 84 * Deciding on Which Bid to Accept, 85 * What If You Can't Find a Green Builder in Your Area?, 85 Protecting Yourself with Good Paperwork, 86 * Paying the Contractor and Managing Your Costs, 88 * Adding Sweat Equity to Your Project, 88 * Shopping for a Green Home in a New Subdivision, 89 * Eight Things You Should Check Out Before You Commit, 89 Chapter 5: Planning Your New Green Home 93 Utilizing Passive Energy Saving Options, 94 * Positioning Your Home for Southern Exposure, 95 * Creating an Energy Efficient Floor Plan, 96 * Designing for Efficient Air Distribution, 97 * Installing Energy Efficient Windows, 98 * Using Green Heating and Cooling Technology , 100 * Installing Green Insulation, 102 Ventilating Your New Home, 105 * Causes of Poor Air Quality, 105 * Incorporating a Whole-House Ventilation System into Plans for Your Home, 106 * Home Ventilation Standards, 107 Determining Whether Solar or Wind Power Are for You, 107 * Generating Solar Power, 108 * Generating Wind Power, 109 Using Sustainable Products and Cutting Costs, 110 * Doing the Up-Front Work, 110 * Handling the Tradeoffs, 111 Avoiding the Seven Biggest Mistakes That Many New Green Homeowners Make, 112 Chapter 6: Green Landscaping 115 Creating a Landscape Plan of Action, 116 * Using Xeriscaping Principals, 117 * Planning a Landscape, 117 * Utilizing Seven Design Elements of Eco-Friendly Landscaping, 118 * Considering Whether to Hire a Professional Designer or Landscaper, 120 Working with Your Soil's Characteristics, 123 * Getting to Know Your Soil, 123 * Determining Your Soil's pH, 124 Determining Where and What to Plant and Landscaping Mistakes to Avoid, 125 Planning a Sustainable Landscape, 127 * The Art of Composting, 127 * What to Feed Your Compost Pile, 128 * The Value of Mulch, 129 * Fertilizers and How to Reduce the Need for Them, 129 Applying and Conserving Water, 131 * Determining When to Water, 132 * Using the Right Type of Irrigation System for Your Location and Needs, 133 * Capturing Water for Garden Use, 134 * Recycling Water for Landscaping, 135 PART 3: REMODELING TO MAKE YOUR HOME ECO-FRIENDLY 137 Chapter 7: Planning Your Green Remodel and Working with a Green Architect and Contractor, 139 Financing Your Green Remodeling Project, 141 * Home Equity Lines of Credit, 142 * Refinancing Your Mortgage, 143 * Second Mortgages, 143 * Miscellaneous Sources of Remodeling Funds, 144 Planning Your Green Project, 144 * Finding a Green Architect, 144 * Handling Trade-Offs, 145 * Planning Tips and Traps, 147 Finding and Working with a Green Contractor, 148 * Shopping Tips for Finding a Contractor, 149 * Deciding on which Bid to Accept, 151 * What If There Are Few Contractors in Your Area?, 152 Minimizing Problems with Complete and Accurate Paperwork, 153 Paying the Contractor and Managing Your Costs, 154 * Cost-Plus or Time-and-Materials, 154 * Fixed-Fee Agreement, 155 * Capped Cost-Plus, 155 * Other Ways of Managing Your Costs, 155 Handling the Final Walk-Through and Punch List, 156 * Before the Final Walk-Through, 156 * The Punch List, 157 Chapter 8: Remodeling Your Home's Exterior with Eco-Friendly Materials Making Your Roof Eco-Friendly, 160 * Finding a Quality Roofer, 162 * Taking Advantage of Green Roofing Options, 163 * Insulating and Weatherproofing Your Roof, 164 * Using Flashing to Prevent Water Damage, 165 Replacing Your Siding with Eco-Friendly Materials, 166 * Insulating Your Walls, 166 * Protecting Your Home with Housewrap, 167 * Making Use of Green Siding Options, 168 Upgrading to Energy Efficient Windows, 170 Using Eco-Friendly Stains and Paints, 172 * Selecting Green Stains and Sealers, 173 * Choosing Green Paints, 173 Building an Eco-Friendly Deck, Patio, or Fence, 175 * Adding a Deck Using Green Materials, 175 * Constructing a Patio as an Alternative to a Deck, 176 * Building a Fence with Green Products, 177 Recycling and Disposing of Construction Waste, 178 Chapter 9: Remodeling Your Home's Interior with Eco-Friendly Systems and Materials 179 Ventilating Your Energy Efficient Home, 180 & #8226; Designing a Whole House Ventilation System, 181 * Minimizing Humidity in Hot and Humid Climates, 182 * Installing Ventilation Systems in Other Areas of Your Home, 182 Upgrading Your Heating and Cooling Systems to Make Them Energy Efficient, 183 * Considering Green Heating Options, 183 * Replacing Your Water Heater, 186 * Upgrading or Installing an Energy Efficient Fireplace, 187 * Reducing Your Air Conditioner Usage, 187 * Finding a Competent HVAC Contractor/Installer, 188 Choosing and Using Eco-Friendly Stains and Paints, 190 Selecting Eco-Friendly Floor Coverings, 191 * Shopping for Environmentally Friendly Carpeting, 191 * Choosing Between Vinyl Flooring and Linoleum, 192 * Consider Tile for Your Floor Covering, 193 * Contemplating Wood or Laminate Flooring, 193 Remodeling Your Kitchen Using Green Appliances and Materials, 195 * Picking Out New Green Appliances, 195 * Upgrading Your Kitchen Cabinets, 196 * Replacing Your Countertops, 197 Upgrading Your Bathroom with Eco-Friendly Fixtures and Materials, 200 * Replacing Toilets, Showers, and Sinks to Conserve Water, 200 * Shopping for Bathroom Flooring, 201 * Changing Your Bathroom Cabinets, 201 * Replacing Your Bathroom Lights, 202 Appendix A: Tips on Selling an Eco-Friendly&

General Fields

  • : 9780814410370SECA
  • : Amacom
  • : Amacom
  • : 0.39
  • : October 2008
  • : 231mm X 152mm X 23mm
  • : United States
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Sid Davis
  • : Paperback
  • : English
  • : 643.12
  • : 240