Construction Work at home

Can you deconstruct?
If you’re planning a major project, which requires at least part of the house to come down, ask the builder if they can “dismantle” the materials for recycling and reuse – rather than just tearing it down and sending the scrap to landfill.
Can you reuse material?
If you did decide to deconstruct part (or all of) your home, find out if the builder is able to use some of the salvaged material in the new construction. This not only saves resources – the old material can also provide pleasing aesthetics to the new construction and help keep the project’s budget under control.
Do you have a green accreditation?
Australia’s two major building industry bodies – the Housing Industry Association (HIA) and the Master Builders Association (MBA) – both provide green training and accreditation to their members.

An HIA GreenSmart Professional is an accreditation that’s awarded to individuals who have completed the GreenSmart Professional training course. The course focuses on a structure’s overall sustainability performance including:

Thermal performance
Passive solar design and natural ventilation
Design and operational issues for water and energy efficiency
Selection of water and energy efficient appliances
Marketing sustainable housing to clients.
MBA members who complete the Association’s ‘Green Living’ training and adopt sustainable innovations in their operations will be able to identify themselves as Master Builders Green Living Builders.

The aim of the training is to provide builders with:

The necessary skills to understand the scope and application of energy provisions in sustainability innovations
Improved management and business skills to enable builders to pursue energy innovations
The necessary tools and information to design and construct energy efficient structures that not only meet minimum standards, but set a new benchmark in the housing sector for energy innovation.
Can you source materials locally?
While locally made building materials may be limited in your area (or a little out of your budget), it doesn’t hurt to find out what’s available.

Remember that materials and products that are manufactured locally travel a shorter distance to site, meaning they have lower embodied energy than materials that have been shipped in from overseas.
Do you choose materials with embodied energy?
The embodied energy of a building refers to the energy consumed throughout all process of its initial production – from the mining and processing of natural resources to the manufacture and transport of the finished product.

Until recently, it was accepted that the embodied energy content of a building was relatively small compared to the energy used during operation of the building throughout its life. Recent research however has shown this is not the case.

According to the CSIRO, the average household contains about 1,000 GJ of energy embodied in materials used in its construction, equivalent to around 15 years of normal operational energy use.

There are a number of tools available to help builders, owners and designers calculate the embodied energy of a building and therefore make informed choses on which materials are the most environmentally sustainable.
Do the materials you choose have other benefits?
Many homeowners are beginning to catch on to the non-environmental benefits of sustainable materials and products. Efficient lighting, heating and cooling systems are not only capable of keeping your home comfortable throughout the year – but they can also cut big dollars from your utility bill.

In addition, some recycled plastic decking can last longer than its wooden counterparts and VOC-free paint can have a number of health benefits for any family members with allergies.
How will you manage waste?
This is a two-pronged issue, and if you really have a finger on your project’s sustainability pulse, you will ensure your builder reduces and recycles material waste both during, and after the construction process.

During the construction process, waste reduction can include designing and building a house to material sizes. This not only slashes the amount of waste heading to landfill, it can also give you access to significant construction savings.

Queensland-based designer builder has told us that designing first and cutting material later can add all sorts of costs that aren’t immediately obvious into a building.

“Obviously, if you design a building around material size you are buying less materials so you are saving some money,” he says. “There is a significant costs these days for disposing of construction waste, so if you have less waste during your construction that is the second layer of saving.”

When the project is nearing completion, you should also ensure your builder recycles materials such as scrap metal, and disposes of any hazardous waste at the proper facilities.

Remember that builders often have a financial incentive to recycle some materials, which can not only work out cheaper than sending it to landfill – but can also turn a healthy profit.

But it’s important to also ask about those materials where it’s more expensive to recycle and dispose of properly (such as treated wood or chemicals) than it is to send them straight to the local landfill.




Recent Blog Posts

Things to Consider When Hiring Electrical Contractors

You’ll be working with an electrician for many years and have to keep up with all of the latest regulations and laws, so choosing a reputable company is critical. When you’re putting together an electrical contractor bid, you want someone who can provide quality work and you can trust. 

But before you sign on the dotted line, here are a few things to consider. These contractors should be fully licensed and insured. In addition to licensing, they should also meet a stringent standard to be able to do their job well.


Rewiring a home is typically easier to do during new construction, as the walls are not finished yet. However, in some homes, the old wires must be removed to replace them. The electrical contractor will also need to rewire an old house. In this case, a reputable company will be able to remove all the older wires in the home.

Hiring Electrical Contractors

Residential rewiring can involve several factors. The wiring process involves putting wires through the walls and ensuring that the various components are installed correctly. In new construction, the wiring process is easier because it is done before the walls are completed. 

This keeps costs down. If the wiring is outdated and in need of replacement, you may need to have a rewiring project performed. Rewiring can be expensive and requires more work than simply removing the old wires.

Other Upgrades

Another consideration is the age of the home. Some older homes don’t have enough power and may not have a 200 amp service. If you need more power, it may be time to update the incoming power. 

A well-maintained electrical system can save time and money since it won’t require replacing the equipment as frequently. A modern, safe electrical system is essential for a home in Sacramento. It can handle the increasing number of appliances and gadgets.

Another aspect to consider is the age of your home. You may have an older home and need to upgrade the service to make your home more energy-efficient. An electrician with the correct knowledge and experience can help you determine if you need a rewiring project. 

If you’re having an electrical contractor do it, make sure they’re updated with your current power company’s standards. You’ll never regret hiring a reliable and efficient professional.

Hiring Contractors

Another thing to consider when hiring an electrical contractor is their experience. The right contractor will have a high level of experience in the field. He will be able to help you determine the best type of electrician to work for you. 

It is also important to consider the type of service you need. While you might be able to do it yourself, it’s still better to hire an electrician to do it for you. There are many companies in the industry that are certified to do this. You should choose the one that’s best suited to your needs. Click here to find out more about the electrical contractor we recommend.

Hiring Electrical Contractors

If you’re looking for a reputable electrician, make sure they have a great track record. A reputable electrical contractor will have integrity and access to all the equipment they need. Whether it’s a lighting contractor or a commercial contractor, a quality electrician will ensure your home’s safety and comfort. If you’re unsure about who to hire, don’t hesitate to contact a few in your area.

An electrician will be required to have a strong understanding of electrical safety and health. A qualified electrician should have experience in working with electrical equipment and other hazardous materials. 

Regardless of the location of their work, an electrician should have a background in safety. They should be able to follow all the regulations and standards for the industry. You should also be familiar with the electrical contractor’s insurance and certification requirements. This is very important because it will protect you from fraud.

A licensed electrical contractor will be able to provide you with a range of services. Their training will help them identify problems before they start and make sure they get the job done right the first time. 

A good electrician will have many references and be able to work with a variety of clients and have the skills to deliver a high-quality finished product. This is the most important part of a successful contractor. You should choose an electrical contractor who will be able to meet the requirements of your project.