Homeowners of all ages have an interest in eco-friendly living, according to the experts. Not all homeowners, but those who believe in “green living” and sustainability, embrace products and homes that offer this feature.
“We continue to see homeowners building or remodeling seeking green building products and making eco-friendly decisions,” says Bryan Edwards of Hughes-Edwards Builders. “From low-E windows and low VOC paints to low-flow faucets and commodes, these products are having a dual impact on the environment and the comfort and lifestyles of families making thse wise choices.” Hughes-Edwards is a certified National Association of Home Builders green professional.
Alan Looney of Castle Homes says, “Trend-wise, we are still seeing green and energy efficient issues playing a role in the decision-making process [when someone is building a home].
“For some, it is not a top priorty, but Castle Homes works to have every project achieve Energy Star and green certification.” Looney adds, “We are finding people want better insulation, windows, indoor air quality, as well as low-maintenance materials and efficient use of space. All these are driving the projects we do toward green building standards.”
While the majority of our clients are interested in green products,according to Sara Ray of Beth Haley Design, “some have concerns varying from the availability of selection options to price comparison versus non-green materials. Typically, most are more than happy to spend the upfront cost knowing they will recoup their money in time with better quality, more efficient products.”
Ray says clients interested in sustainability range from the 30s to the 70s and beyond. “The majority are truly interested in being eco-friendly, with a range of commitments to energy saving options all the way to a desire to buld with as many recycled products as possible.” Such products include lighting, plumbing fixtures, tile, carpet, countertops, and more.
The most successful green product sold by Decorating Den is quartz countertop material, according to Bohnne Jones. She says, “Under the Cambria name, it’s made of quartz in the United States and is available in a variety of popular colors. Also popular are recycled glass tiles.”
Jones adds that homeowners transplanted to the Greater Nashville area seem to have a stronger interest in eco-friendly living than many local clients. “The price difference between eco-friendly and standard materials is sometimes a deterant when a homeowner makes a choice,” she says.
According to Amanda Sweeney-Davis of Just Design This, “All ages are interested in ‘going green’ and people who are interested in the movement don’t mind spending a bit more to add those eco-friendly products to their home.”
Upcycling is another word found in the eco-frienly world and describes objects that find a new life in a new purpose. According to Melissa McKinney of Your Home Enhanced. “People coming to my store are looking for quality and reasonable prices, but want a sense of something unique and a reminder of another time,” she says, explaining part of the appeal of the “vintage” trend. “So many of our pieces are recycled or upcycled. They are also conscious of the environment and want to make a purchase that reinforces their beliefs.”
The trends, which range from a boom in certified multi-family construction to the advent of consumer friendly home energy technology, were identified by Earth Advantage Institute based on discussions with a broad range of audiences over the latter part of 2011. These sectors included policymakers, builders, developers, architects, real estate brokers, appraisers, lenders, and homeowners.
Another trend worth watching includes water issues. The specter of water shortages in the United States is expected to increase the interest in products that include water efficient features.
There are a number of sources for eco-friendly products and services in the Greater Nashville area including:
Beth Haley Designs
Just Design This
Your Home Enchanced