In Balance With the Environment: Green Homes

In Balance With the Environment: Green Homes

In practicing architectural balance in Vail Valley and in Western North Carolina, a big consideration is always striking the perfect balance of fully incorporating the natural beauty of the landscape and exterior spaces with the design of the interior. Balancing nature with our homes can also extend beyond design as more and more people are embracing green homes. Choosing to go green with your home can mean many things, but let’s look at a few trends that we’ve been seeing.

Smart Homes for Energy Efficiency

Smart homes have become all the rage. They give us the opportunity to manage and monitor our homes like never before. Interestingly, the advantages aren’t just based on the convenience of being able to control our homes with an app on our phone. By being able to better regulate thermostats and lights, it’s much easier to maximize energy efficiency. There are many opportunities to introduce smart appliances into your home at any time, but while building it is worth considering linking the HVAC or heating systems to Wi-Fi.

Solar Panels

Solar panels don’t just provide an alternative to carbon-based fuel for our heating and electricity, they can give a homeowner energy independence from the grid! Many people imagine solar panels to be a compromise to a home’s design; clunky panels that are plunked down regardless of what the chosen architectural style. Now that’s no longer the case, and solar panels can be carefully incorporated into the design, adding to the architecture balance.

Window Walls

In the past, sustainable building meant using small windows. Now those who want to live in green homes can enjoy entire walls of windows with improvements to glazing and insulation.

If you’d like to learn more about incorporating green features into your home, then get in touch with us! We love sharing our expertise on all aspects of architecture in Vail Valley, Avon, Edwards, Beaver Creek, and in Western North Carolina!

Trends In Architecture to Watch for In the Future

The world of architecture is constantly evolving, and keeping track of new developments helps you take the best out of the trends that come and go. What’s new for 2014? TAB Associates offers the following information on four architecture trends that are expected to become prominent as the year progresses.

TAB Associates Green Projects
Source: TAB Associates
  • Greater attention from the public regarding large-scale construction projects- Members of the public are increasingly likely to take an active role in managing and deciding on large scale building projects that have a strong impact on the urban landscape and local economy.
  • Off-the-grid on the urban scene– Although going “off-the-grid” used to be associated with living out of town, even urban dwellers are attempting to avoid a dependence on the grid for power.
  • De-emphasizing vehicle traffic– Across the country, more and more commuters try to get where they need to be via public transport.
  • Affordable low-rise and mid-rise housing– Instead of towering high-rise residential structures, urban dwellers increasingly prefer approachable, low/mid-rise housing.

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Take Care of the Environments by Building These Green Features Into Your Home

Building an environmentally-friendly home preserves nature, lowers your energy bills, and results in a happier, healthier home environment for you and your family. If you’re building a new home, it’s important to do your research about green building before you settle on plans. Follow these tips for a greener, more¬†eco-friendly home.

Green Building in Colorado
Source: TAB Associates

 

  • Choose the right doors and windows. Those that allow warmth to escape are not very energy-efficient. Front doors without windows, especially when made with eco-friendly materials, are the most energy efficient choice. Also, make sure you choose Energy Star certified windows.
  • Pay close attention to your siding choices. Some siding materials like PVC vinyl release toxins and are not biodegradable. Stucco and wood are greener choices, and aluminum siding is also quite green.
  • Consider using renewable energy sources to heat and cool your home. This can include installing solar panels, which capture the sun’s energy and convert it to heat. If solar panels are not an option, heat with natural gas. It’s not renewable, but there are very efficient natural gas heaters available.

If you’re thinking of building a new home,¬†contact TAB Associates to discuss your plans and find out how we make green home design easier.