How Today’s Homebuilding Benefits the Environment

By on January 16, 2020

By Jim Perry
According to the recently released Characteristics of Recent Home Buyers Special Studies authored by Carmel Ford of the Economics and Housing Policy arm of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), the key reason most new homebuyers gave for their decision to purchase a new home was because they desired better homes and better neighborhoods.

Building better homes and better neighborhoods is the reason today’s new home community builders create the finest, most durable and environmentally-friendly new homes and new home communities in history – and that means houses and neighborhoods that better harmonize with the environment than any homes in history.

In addition to all the economic benefits homebuilding brings to a community, today new home communities reclaim land that is no longer viable for agricultural use. When new homebuilding reclaims land, it protects it from environmental threats of wildfires, vermin and flooding; which in turn reduces taxpayers’ public safety burdens.

When a new home replaces an old home, it replaces it with a home that is constructed with latest in building materials, technologies and innovations that offer the finest quality, durability, affordability, energy efficiency, environmental performance, disaster mitigation and safety.

Today new homes are built in new home communities where homebuilders employ a variety of disciplines and methods to ensure that the homes are designed to better utilize our natural resources and reduce the impact on public utilities and public safety. To harmonize with our environment here in the Baldy View region, today’s new homes exceed the most stringent environmental laws and regulations and homebuilders donate large swaths of environmentally sensitive land back to the communities in which they are built.

To build these state-of-the-art new homes and communities, the land will be inspected by dozens of highly-trained scientific professionals ranging from hydrologists to anthropologists to ensure the environment – both inside and outside of the home – is protected.   Each step in the building of today’s new home features the input of the community’s public safety and environmental professionals to better protect homeowners against natural disasters such as wildfire and floods, better facilitate public safety personnel and transportation.

In Southern California, our biggest environmental concern is water. Today’s builders design water systems to protect homeowners, the community and the entire region’s water supply. New homebuilders employ landscape designs to ensure the most cost- and resource-effective landscaping for both the homes and the overall community using plants that best protect the region’s geography and biology.

Today’s new home communities further protect our environment with alternative concrete substitutes and aggregates. Recycled materials substitute for sand, gravel and stones which allow rainwater to seep through what are known as Permeable Pavers & Pavement systems and filter naturally through soil on its way to groundwater aquifers and surface waters. That means less unfiltered, nitrate-laden stormwater running off paved surfaces into drainage gutters.

Today’s homebuilders believe that the environment doesn’t stop at the door. Today’s homes offer healthier indoor environments with innovations such as wallboard products that resist mold because they don’t absorb moisture as easily as typical gypsum board and the paperless surface of such products does not support mold growth. New homes come equipped with state-of-the-art new appliances that offer a wider range of environmental benefits and energy cost savings than ever before. Self-cleaning and glare-reducing windows reduce the risk of window failure during abnormal weather. Window glass laminated with composites provides enough strength to allow windows to withstand high winds and certain projectiles.

New home community builders also provide the community with the latest and safest infrastructure designs and products while providing the communities with open spaces, state-of-the-art parks, libraries, schools and other amenities – all built to the same exacting standards as the homes.

Today, building a better home extends far beyond the structure of the home. It means building healthier communities, environments and economies.

The BIA Baldy View Chapter seeks to advance the opportunity to attain the American Dream of home ownership. For additional information on homebuying, home improvements, the benefits of homeownership or home safety or maintenance, visit our website and have a great Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., day.

Jim Perry is Vice President-Operations at William Lyon Homes and Board President for the Building Industry Association (BIA) Baldy View Chapter.