Green living on Mountain Island Lake
Posted on 27 Apr 2009 by Rhi Bowman
Ever wondered what a “green” house looks and feels like? Now’s your chance to find out. Schreiner Custom Homes, Habitat for Humanity, Horne Heating and Air Conditioning* and Channel 36 — among others — have teamed up to give you a glimpse into the world of residential green.
Now through May 10, the $800,000, 4,200 square foot home is open to the public from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. Thurs. — Sat. and from noon until 5 p.m. on Sundays. Admission is $5 and benefits Habitat for Humanity. It’s located roughly 10 miles from Uptown in Mountain Island Lake’s Overlook community, but don’t follow your GPS to the final turn.
Once you’re in the community (here’s a map), itself designed to be earth-friendly, follow the blue “Home Tour” signs and park in the community parking lot. There, you’ll need to pick up the blue sign trail once more. Hike the steep sidewalk, between houses, to the cul de sac where the “green” house sits on it’s manicured lawn to your left. Stick to the walkway, the yard is soggy due to a recent installation of sod — drought-resistant sod, of course.
What makes this home green? It is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified, for starters, meaning it meets the highest standards for efficiency and sustainable construction. It’s estimated this home will use 30–40 percent less electricity and be 30 more water efficient than other comparable homes.
The living spaces are decorated with non-toxic paints, wood floors and carpets and most rooms enjoy a beautiful, natural view. Visitors are welcome to inspect the heavily insulated crawl space and attic — both major players when it comes to energy efficiency — snoop through each room in the family home and ask questions.
Don’t miss: Rainwater is captured in a holding pond at the end of the driveway, funneled into a giant underground tank then reused for landscaping purposes. And, don’t forget the garage, that’s where you can find out more about the neighborhood, the house’s special features and the eco-products used throughout the project. That’s also where you can gain access to the crawl space.
Think you have to be a millionaire to live green? Untrue. Habitat for Humanity incorporates many of the same eco-products and practices when building their homes for charity.
Interested in visiting? Be one of the first three people to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and smail-mail address, and I’ll send you two $2-off coupons.
Want to see more, but don’t have time to take the tour yourself? We’ve got you covered:
photos: Rhi Bowman; view these photos on Flickr
*Jon Horne owns Horne Heating and Air and the home.