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Latest Posts for Sustainable Home Building - Minimalist Interior
Future proof your home by preparing and building to for climate change

Homes built for Climate Disruptions: A Primer for Home Owners and Buyers

As much as we want to see homes that are built sustainably - they must also fulfil their primary function - to provide safe, comfortable, healthy shelter for families to thrive - so durability and good design is key. I’m writing this during a heat wave in June, 2021, as much of the US and Canada seem poised to experie…

Spray Foam Insulation - Is it Good or Toxic & Dangerous?

Is spray foam insulation a good choice for your home? Or a toxic recipe for disaster?

Spray foam insulation has been used primarily for home renovations as a way of sealing and insulating in one step, but spray foam is now even finding a home in new build - but, is it safe? Is spray foam insulation the best idea. There is a plethora of home improvement shows demonstrating how easy it is to buy, renovat…

Alternative wall coverings to drywall

The best alternatives to drywall for finishing interior walls

Drywall is the most common interior finish surface inside homes due to ease and affordability. But there are options! see below for the best natural healthy alternatives to drywall for finishing interior walls. Walls in residential homes are almost exclusively finished using gypsum board (either recycled or synthetic)…

$40k Interest-Free Loans for Green Home Renos, How to Apply Canada 2021

Greener Homes interest-free loan scheme 2021 Canada - the ultimate guide

Deep home retrofits through grants and interest-free loans to make your home more energy-efficient were a promise by Trudeau and the Liberals and now in 2021, it looks like they're becoming a reality. The Canada Greener Homes Grant scheme is investing $2.6 billion over 7 years to help up to 700,000 Canadian homeowners…

Canada Greener Homes Grants Program 2021 Launches for Home Efficiency

Canada Greener Homes Grants retrofit program is launched

The Canada Greener Homes Grant 2021 is to help homeowners make their homes more energy-efficient, create new jobs across Canada for energy advisors, grow domestic green supply chains, and help fight climate change. Canada launches $2.6B of home improvement grants  Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Natural Resources Mi…

Canada Greener Homes Grant 2021 - How to apply fiberglass attic insulation

Canada Greener Homes Grant 2021 - the "how to apply" guide - step by step

Canadian homeowners, with 2021's grants it's time to improve home insulation, to upgrade heating systems to more efficient ones like heat pumps, to install solar panels and replace old and leaky windows and doors. How and why to claim the Canada greener homes grant Buildings, including homes, account for 18% of Canada…

Toboom - Winner of Formica Canada’s Industrial Design Competition

Canadian students win first prize at Formica’s 2021 FORM Student Innovation Competition

This year marked the fourth year Formica Canada ran it's FORM design competition, and the second year that it was won by Canadian design students. Formica Canada runs an annual design competition called the FORM Student Innovation Competition, and it has been won by University of Montreal students Bénédicte Laurent an…

Carbon Tax USA & Canada - If it brings investment to lower carbon then it's good

Carbon tax in Canada or USA – How More Tax might be a Good Thing

Raising taxes is usually something that dips into all wallets - but the Carbon tax, applied correctly to target consumption, may be the best thing that ever happened for the North American construction industry and homeowners. I was a carpenter/contractor for decades, during and in between university. In 2008 an old i…

Ikea - Just How Sustainable is the Swedish Big-Box Furniture Retailer?

Ikea Sustainability and their new Sell-Back Program

When we think of Big-Box Stores & Retailers we don't generally think of sustainability - we think of a "pile it high & sell it cheap" disposable mentality - but we've been discovering that Ikea, the worlds largest furniture retailer, is at least trying. So here’s a new situation – We find that a certain corporation is…

Saving Energy in Swimming Pools and Hot Tubs - Our Top Tips to Save Money

Top tips for energy efficient swimming pools - reduce pool cleaning & running costs

Swimming in your own home pool is a great way to stay fit, enjoy time with the family, and top up your vitamin D. But beyond the purchase price, what does it cost to run and clean swimming pools, and how can we best reduce energy costs. Energy efficient & Eco friendly swimming pools - are they even a thing?!  The curr…

How to Build With Less Wood for Best Performance

How to build high performance homes with less lumber

With the cost of lumber at an all time high, and some suggesting it may hit +300%, we decided to look at how we can still build high performance yet affordable homes. The cost of lumber is at an all time high, and because of that fact, other wall assemblies are showing themselves to be more affordable in comparison. S…

Earth Day 2021 – America Mobilizes to make Earth Day every Day!

And so it's Earth Day, Again...

After the 50th anniversary of Earth Day last April kind of fizzled out in the face of impending viral doom, what does Earth Day 2021 mean for the Planet. Under a previous US administration, the environment seemed to have taken a back seat to nationalism, industry, jobs, and the economy. Initiatives like the Paris agr…

What to do with old coffee grounds

Here is what old coffee grounds are good for - including skin care !

Following on from our recent article on how putting old coffee grounds on gardens will not help them grow. We thought it would be useful to take a look at what coffee grounds are good for - like skin care. As we mentioned in our previous post, coffee has many magical properties but its magic should never be used on yo…

Home Energy labeling, Impact of Mandatory labels on Real Estate prices US Canada

The North American Property market faces a ticking timebomb - Mandatory energy labeling - and here's what to do about it

With our international perspective of construction and home pricing trends, it's time to stress the importance to the homeowners of North America and Canada of home performance. If buying a home, or thinking about it - please read this first. A recent report in the UK by the Climate Change Committee (CCC) has started…

Why you should Never put Coffee Grounds In the Garden

Why to NEVER put coffee grounds on plants or the garden...

When we were spring gardening and had azaleas to plant, we remembered reading that coffee grounds might help certain garden plants so thought we'd check it out. We all know that coffee has many a wonderful benefit, from that ever-so-necessary espresso first thing in the morning, to rubbing it on your skin for a bit of…

Moving to the Countryside - How to make it Work

Moving to the countryside? Here's how that can work...

The impact of 2020 and working from home has a lot of people considering moving away from urban centers to the countryside. How do we stave off an environmental disaster of losing greenspace to housing. With so many of us being forced to work from home, this has brought many changes to our economy, our priorities and…

Why a Zero Waste Lifestyle is Important

Next to Nothing: Why Living Zero-Waste Matters

How to live a zero-waste lifestyle - reduce your climate impact and carbon footprint with simple lifestyle choices , learn more here. Garbage is a major contributor to the greenhouse gas emissions heating up the atmosphere and causing climate chaos. People generate over 3.5 million tons of solid waste every day worldw…

Zero Waste to Landfill Project - Australian Supermarket Coles steps up

Zero Waste to Landfill Pilot Project - Australian Grocery Store Coles

Coles Supermarket partners with Cleanaway to convert waste into fuel to divert all waste from landfills. I’m not the first and I definitely won’t be the last to say that there is far too much (unnecessary) plastic packaging on foods. It’s everywhere! As soon as you step foot through the automatic doors in the supermar…

Living Building Challenge

One of the greenest homes on Earth is taking the Living Building Challenge in Alberta Canada - The Confluence

Named “The Confluence,” this house produces more energy than it uses, it captures water on site and has a positive impact on its occupants and surrounding environment. Located northwest of Calgary, Alberta, The Confluence home is a partnership between Southern Alberta Institute of Technology’s (SAIT) Green Building Te…