Green's Cost Benefits
Increasingly, homeowners are taking extra steps to make sure their additions and renovations are as non­polluting, energy-efficient, and waste-reducing as possible. And while some measures, like hiring a professional "deconstruction" team, can add to the bottom line, others, such as reusing dis­carded building materials on-site, can actually save you cash.

And then there's the feel-good factor that comes from knowing you've done your best to respect the earth's resources. Two years ago, Stephen Beili hired Moody to build a 1,400-square-foot house that Beili had designed. He was impressed by the contractor's willingness to preserve as many of the site's trees as possible. He also liked the fact that Moody didn't haul in a Dumpster until the proj­ect was nearly finished. "He took everything away in his pickup truck to be recycled—wood, metal, and plastic—so we never needed one."

Beili was willing to trade off a few lux­uries to build a house that lives in peaceful coexistence with its plot of land. "I had to give up the hot tub, which was hard,"?he says. But in the end, he adds, he's just as happy looking out the window at the abundant plant life that survived the construction as he would be immersed in whirlpool bubbles. As Beili discovered, one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to green up a job site is by recycling. "Almost everything can be recycled in a big remodel—fixtures, flooring, sinks—all of it," says Kim Masters, a green-building consultant in Boulder, Colorado. Local recycling centers and national organizations like Habitat for Humanity's ReStores will pick up donated materials, saving you the cost of discarding them. If you're doing demolition, consider hiring a deconstruction expert rather than a demo company to ensure that salvageable materials survive intact. According to the ReUse People, a California building-salvage group, deconstruction can cost up to $10,000 more, but you can offset the expense, or even come out ahead, by donating materials to a nonprofit for a big, fat charitable tax credit.
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