Home building has changed a lot in the last several years. As the industry in Asheville was shifting heavily toward a “Green” sustainable mentality, the market fell due to the economy and many home builders had no work at all. Today, we see some light at the end of the tunnel and people are beginning to buy real estate and build homes once again. While some people are opting out for smaller homes where minimal living can be done; others are after the best possible home they could get at a reasonable price. Here are some tips to think about when building that perfect home:
1. Find a piece of property not too far from civilization. Using several gallons of gas to simply go to the grocery store is not the “living green” way.
2. Locate a community of sorts. There are many developments in the Asheville and WNC area and they offer neighbors and other options just a few hundred feet from your doorstep. A nice walk! We love what Biltmore Farms has done in the South AVL area, and also what the Village of Cheshire built in Black Mountain.
3. Find an Architect who is Green, Sustainable and Practical. Rantis Architects out of Asheville NC is a great option who we have personally met and learned a lot about his vision.
4. Using recycled, upcycled and reusable materials are always a great choice; if they are made of quality and will remain that way long after the installation
5. Check out your subcontractors (the people your Contractor is hiring to complete different phases of the job) to make sure you are getting exactly what you want and need. Here are some options that might be wise to consider for your dream home:
a. Use plumbing and water conservation equipment and services from a company such as Aqua Pro Solutions in Asheville. Items such as Greywater recyling, Rainwater harvesting, Waterless urinals, High efficiency toilets, Flapperless toilets, DualFlush kits, water saving shower heads and aerators. We believe that every conscious architect in the area should specify these products in their prints to make sure the consumer is not getting short changed with a inferior brand or model.
b. Space saving solutions and custom closets are also a great option. In keeping a nice home organized, you want to make the best possible use of space available. More Space Place in Asheville offers everything from custom closet design, Murphy Beds, home offices, garage organization and many other great options. Sometimes builders want to offer, and clients accept, a premium home with wire closets. This is not good. Get your home and closets organized with custom solutions for easier living.
c. Green flooring, tile and cabinets can be found at the beautiful 7500 square foot showroom at Salon Blue Ridge in Flat Rock NC about 20 minutes south of Asheville NC. The also have a great selection of premium appliances to browse.
d. Pick your lumber and building materials including windows, doors, roofing, garage doors, and reclaimed wood from a quality local business. Good windows are definitely very important in sealing your home properly. Westall Chandley is our first choice when it comes to this. They provide great service and deliver to your doorstep. When buying these building materials in bulk their prices are very comparable to the big lumber stores; but with the personal touch needed to help a project become successful.
e. Home automation is a big part of making life easier and more comfortable. Hi-Tech Systems, located in downtown Asheville is the perfect company to make this happen. Have the temperature, lighting, and every feature of your home controlled from a single location. They also provide video, audio, and home security for your complete home.
f. Radiant floor heating and solar energy systems are 2 very important items to be considered. Thermacraft Energy Services is the main reputable company to provide these products and services. I have seen them do a great install in a home in the Montford area of Asheville NC.
g. Insulation is a big part of having a Green and sustainable home. The best company we have come across is Home Energy Partners. Icynene Spray Foam Insulation is one of the key ingredients I would use in a premium home.
h. Having a Poured Wall foundation for your home is the best option. K-Wall Poured Walls has been doing work in the Asheville area for years and plenty of premium homes have been built on these superior foundations.
i. Landscape architecture and land planning is important to the building process. This applies to before the house pad is set, during construction and when the site is ready for the finishing touches. Broadbooks Associates does some incredible work in the Asheville, Waynesville and WNC area.
h. Find a painting subcontractor that is familiar with, uses and offers Eco Paint options, and allows you to choose the product directly from the store they recommend.
g. Make sure your framing subcontractor builds your decks with high quality composite decking materials and not pressure treated wood. The lifespan is a lot longer than wood and there are many color choices.
h. Find a roofing subcontractor that works well with synthetic cedar or slate roofing materials. These products are more expensive but well worth the life expectancy they provide. Green and sustainable. Recycled shingles are also another good option.
Find a great Home Builder / General Contractor to build your perfect home. Bass & Royster Builders, Wright Family Homes, Preish Construction, Heatherly Construction, Providence Homes, Redtree Builders, and Bellwether Builders are a great place to start. You can also view the Home Builders page on Ask Asheville or the Asheville Home Builders Association website. The Western North Carolina Green Building Council is also a great local community resource. You can also see some options when it comes to Asheville Commercial Construction Building Contractors.
Note: Ask your builder for a list of the subcontractors he is using, check them out personally online and ask to help make the decision who works on your project. The cheapest contractor or subcontractor can sometimes lead to problems. Building a house that you want to turn into a home needs tender loving care every step of the way.