Tag Archives: home contractors in Newton MA

From Bamboo to Recycled Glass, There is a Green Countertop for Every Green Home

If you have a kitchen construction or renovation project in your future, consider using green or recycled materials for the countertops. The following recycled countertops and materials can provide a sturdy yet beautiful surface for your kitchen counters while helping sustain the status of your green home.
  • Bamboo: Bamboo, a type of fast-growing grass, is a popular material for kitchen countertops. In addition to being a sustainable and quickly renewable material source, it is also stronger and sturdier than many other sorts of hardwoods.
  • Recycled glass: Recycled glass countertops can be very attractive with color and character that matches the material. From small, fine particles of glass to larger pieces of glass embedded in concrete, recycled glass works well in most kitchen applications. Sometimes porous glass surfaces will need to be resealed once or twice a year.
  • Salvaged wood: Wood salvaged from sources such as construction and remodeling projects can make outstanding kitchen countertops. In some cases, you may be able to find excellent hardwoods or costly wood types for a very reasonable price. Remember that wood can be affected by moisture and heat, so use it most on islands away from sinks and stoves.
  • Recycled paper: Recycled paper countertops are usually made from 100 percent recycled post-consumer paper items, mixed with a petroleum-free resin and pigments for coloration. These countertops provide an appealing appearance and a relatively sturdy surface.
  • Concrete: Concrete countertops are very strong and generally long-lasting green options for a kitchen. Locally sourced or poured-in-place countertops are the best for most applications since they don’t require long-range transportation.
Sage Builders LLC is a general contractor in Newton, MA, specializing in residential design, construction, and renovation, including kitchens. Contact us today for more information on recycled countertops and materials that can help you sustain a green kitchen.

The Future of Home Design: The Zero Net Energy Home (ZNE)

For many new homeowners, energy conservation and sustainability are two of the more important elements they want in their residence. For these clients, the zero net energy (ZNE) home can provide the energy savings they want while still creating an elegant, comfortable residential setting.

What are Zero Net Energy Homes?

A zero net energy home is a residence that consumes only as much energy as it can produce using renewable energy techniques and equipment. A ZNE home does not use electrical power from the local energy grid. ZNE homes typically use solar power installations as a major source of energy generation, but they also incorporate other sustainable technologies and energy conservation measures that significantly affect energy consumption.

Sustaining a Zero Net Energy Home

Some areas of the country, such as California, have fully embraced the concept of the zero net energy home. As the concept continues to spread across the country, homeowners in other areas of the country will find ways to sustain a ZNE home. These can include:
  • Installing high-efficiency HVAC systems: High-efficiency heating and cooling systems can significantly reduce energy demands while keeping a home comfortable in all seasons.
  • Installing efficient windows: Installing double-pane or triple-pane windows can reduce air leaks around windows while decrease energy requirements.
  • Using programmable thermostats: Programmable thermostats and other control technologies allow you to precisely control the operation of your heating and cooling system.
  • Reducing overall energy waste: Power strips, timers, motion sensors, and other technologies can shut off energy-consuming equipment and lights when not in use.
A general contractor in Newton, MA, Sage Builders LLC provides expert residential design, construction, and renovation services to clients in and around Boston. Contact us today for more information on zero net energy homes and how they are growing in popularity throughout the United States.