Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Green is UnGreed!

"The greed that led the world economy into crisis will not defeat our commitment to good work." Rick Fedrizzi

This quote came in a letter from the the CEO of the US Green Building Council, Rick Fedrizzi, offering the hope for homeowners and those in the green building industry who are concerned about the viability of our Green Movement during tough economic times. With everyone questioning the viability of the housing market in general, he reminds us that good is always valued. In fact, when you come right down to it, good equals value. We tend to choose better things that last longer and forego short term gratification when the dollars really matter.

He reminds us that we cannot wait for change to be effected by our legislators, our bankers, our employers or our mentors. It's up to us to create these positive changes for ourselves. By voting for officials we can support and then NOT just leaving it up to them but to get to work behind them and speak about, write about, blog about and take our need for positive change into the center of our real lives.

Change is hard. Not changing and waiting for things to get better is harder. We can create our own agenda, our own thinking, our own actions, as ultimately our abundance and our freedom!

Good ideas, and good trends eventually do take hold once proven. I posted a basic green blog on a real estate interactive site a while back and there were very few comments. Since then, I've helped initiate more discussion on these values in my circle of influence, attended several Green Living and Building Expos, taught a Green Mortgages workshop, participated in a Green Home Bus Tour, visited a couple of New Green Home and Renovation Open Houses, started foward planning for a Better Living (shades of green) seminar, and been party to a conversation on LEED and local Health Inititaves with my local officals and University. I have been speaking with more clients who are interested in building smaller better, greener homes. The conversation with banks (fewer, leaner) about ways to fund these projects is an open dialogue...we aren't there yet but with the 2009 Housing Bill I am pushing hard for updates to the traditional Energy Efficient Mortgage including air quality, more dollars and ways toincorporate the Alternative Energy Tax Credits. This trend is certainly catching fire and is NOT a trend we will see reversed any time soon (while there is breath in my body!)

Good news catches on for a reason: In recent months, I have witnessed a number of great new technologies and models coming to the fore. Given that the 2008 Congress Bailout Bill did include some tax credit extentions for solar and alternative energy --that very fact may help folks with their acceptance levels. Trends I have witnessed coming online locally include prefab modular home companies, new alternative energy products, new publications and networks supporting green concepts in various forms. The sheer enthusiasm for things green is contagious. It's gaining momentum. As better home and lifestyle trends become more the norm, these concepts are gaining acceptance with appraisers, realtors, underwriters, and lenders. Perhaps because green choices make both economic, social and environmental sense!

The upshot of all this for homeowners who are building or renovatiing and want to do a better job is more choice and more options with more willing participants. So remember the new mantra of our times: Green is Good!

Catch the wave! Loannetter

For more on green building http://www.usgbc.org