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  • Writer's pictureKeith Groninger

It's Not Easy Being Green

Updated: Feb 6

Steps to Take When Building a Green Certified Custom Home in Winter Park, Orlando and Central Florida by Groninger Custom Homes.


Actually, "Going Green" isn't very difficult at all.

We don't green certify all of the homes we build but from what we've learned from the process, can comfortably say that most of our homes are green. So, what is Green? We look at the characteristics of the products and processes used during construction in order to understand the impact on the efficiency, health, durability, longevity and impact of the home and it's occupants.


Do you want to reduce your electric bill?

Do you want a home that is healthy?

Do you want a home that is easy to maintain?

If any of these sound good to you, we should probably talk about building green.



Here in Florida, there are three major green certifying agencies that establish performance standards for construction. We prefer Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) because it is specifically tailored for homes here in our state. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is perhaps the most well known but has it's strength in commercial construction. The National Green Building Standard (NGBS) has ties to the building code and the National Association of Home Builders, but for some reason isn't as popular.



Each of the green certifying programs uses similar checklists for tracking the green components of a home and calculating the overall performance rating. In general "Green" can be categorized into:


  • Adaptable Design

  • Community Impact

  • Durable Construction

  • Energy Efficiency

  • Environmental Awareness

  • Health and Comfort

  • Life Cycle Assessment

  • Operations and Maintenance

  • Property Characteristics

  • Resource Utilization

  • Site Development

  • Waste Management

  • Water Conservation


The design of the home, the materials that are used to construct it and the products that are used within it, can all have an impact upon making a home more "green". The certifying process calculates the benefit of varying values that meet the intent of the category. The process is an integrative whole-building approach where points earned in one category may benefit or impede performance elsewhere.



A preliminary analysis can be performed during the home design phase so that goals can be established for development of the project. Some of the most cost-effective and beneficial results can be obtained by incorporating green decisions into the early design phase.



We have built several green certified homes and have been twice recognized by FGBC as building some on the greenest homes in the state. Even when we don't pursue green certification, most of our homes are designed and built with many of the green standards in mind. Look at the categories above. Isn't that they way you would like to have your home built?


Some additional articles that compliment this topic:


Little is more meaningful and personal than a home, and the experience of designing and building your own home should be rewarding and enjoyable. Choosing a builder is difficult. The process of designing and building a home involves numerous decisions about components, systems and services selected from criteria that includes price, quality, appearance and performance. How can you possibly understand everything unless the builder is willing to share all of the information?


Allow us to introduce you to The GCH Way of building your next home. Please let us know if you have any questions. Keith Groninger

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