The State of Florida offers excellent tax incentives for applying Green standards to new construction or renovating commercial and residential buildings. Besides tax incentives, I was surprised to learn that applying Green standards is not as costly or stringent as most people think.
Jerry Nelson is an accredited LEED professional builder with luxury residence builder, Bomar Builders Inc. (LEED = Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design—developed by the US Green Building Council-USGBC. LEED is accepted internationally and nationally as a standard of excellence.)
Jerry Nelson said, “The greatest misconception about Green building is the cost. The real expense is in the pre-construction planning with architects to make green systems integral with the building.”
On average, an upfront investment of 2% in green building design results in saving more than ten times the initial investment in the life-cycle of total construction costs. In addition, the cost of building green falls into the same percentile of costs for building outside of green standards.
Jerry Nelson cautions, “Putting a solar panel on house is not really “green” construction. Green construction is integrating a sustainable system to provide proper air quality and lower energy costs. The end result is that the whole house is a system—a living thing.” However, changing one dynamic can affect many features in a home. For example, installing energy efficient windows reduces cooling costs and sun damage to interiors while adding needed light and protecting the building from hurricane winds.
Nelson believes buyers need more motivations to go Green. He adds, “As incentives go, there is no question as to compensation when using LEED’s home standards. A LEED certified building or residence is considered to comprise the most comprehensive Green system, integrating energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts. In other words, using LEED construction lowers an individual’s “carbon footprint” in his environment. Visit www.usgbc.com for more information on this excellent program.
BOMAR endorses LEED standards for building Green. “In Florida, most new construction is going green whether we know it or not. For example, schools and public buildings now require LEED in construction. Green is being mandated in many areas of the public sector,” Nelson said.
This is all important information for homeowners whether planning to build their dream home, or renovating their existing home to improve quality of life. Any improvement to our homes impacts not only us for the better, but our environment, as well. In future blogs, I will return with more benefits on building and renovating Green. So stay tuned!
Wishing you the best from my corner of paradise,