It seems the time may have finally come that homebuyers are actually starting to ask how well was a home constructed in addition to whether it has wood floors and granite countertops. At least that is what you would think when you look at the number of organizations committed to making current and future homes more durable and more energy efficient. At the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) we call it "A Stronger Shade of Green".
The idea of making homes more durable by retrofitting older homes and applying prescriptive building methods to new homes is not something new. Nor is the ideas of building a home in a sustainable way while making it as energy effecient as possible. But building or retrofitting a home that , depending on it's location, is resistant to Wind, Siesmic, Flood and Wildfire while being a model of energy efficiency is.
At the FLASH Annual Meeting being held in Orlando Florida on October 6-8 a group of government, industry, and corporate leaders as well as a variety of Subject Matter Experts will finalize ongoing work to define the features and performance standards for the Durable and Green house of the future.
Work is already in progress to then take those charactoristics in both Green performance and Disaster mitigation and index them in order to begin to have a common language on strength and sustainablity. This method will allow for national comparisons and will eventually serve as tool for homebuyers all accross the country that rates durability and energy efficiency. It will also help better define the alphabet soup of standards and practices in both movements in an objective and measured way.
The biggest challenge? Gaining acceptance from homebuyers, home builders, lenders, the real estate industry, suppliers, manufacturers, designating organizations, governments and the media.
The combined effort of every stakeholder will be needed, but for such a worthy cause the decision is easy.