On this week’s show, I had four experts join me to discuss how green building can be sustainable for the Earth and affordable for you.

Green building has become deeply associated with high costs. So experts, Sheri Koones, Miki Cook, Carl Seville and Marcus de la Fleur explain why it becomes so expensive and strategies to make it more affordable.

Many builders approach green building as an “add on” item to homes they’re already building, which adds to the cost of the entire project. It’s typical to have a budget when building a home, and once that budget is reached people can’t, or won’t include any additional projects. Unfortunately, those additional projects that are cut are usually green building features. However, experts believe there is a better, more efficient way to make green building more affordable.

Since green building is treated as an “add on” in most cases, starting it from the very beginning and looking at the project holistically is a better approach. If you plan, design and build your home using money-saving strategies, you will save on your base construction costs and be able to afford and add high performance upgrades.

The price of a home is based on how it is designed and built. So the simpler you keep the design, the easier it will be to build the base affordably, and the more money you’ll have to put towards high-performance materials. By thinking about the design from the beginning, you can affordably add green features to the home you originally wanted.

What about people who are renovating and not building from the ground up?

There’s actually not that much of a difference in remodeling and new construction other than the location of the home, said expert Miki Cook. Many remodeling projects involve architects, so they are basically taking the house down to studs by redesigning or adding on to the current structure. Green building remodeling strategies are the same as building a brand new home.

It’s possible to build a green home regardless of your budget by using money-saving strategies and applying those savings to the high performance features you want. Start from the planning phase, and find a builder who understands your financial and green feature goals. The long-term savings for green building are tremendous.

Click here to learn more about these four experts.

WSB Radio’s Ilyce Glink Show – April 20, 2014

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