Sustainable or “green” building means designing and constructing houses that are efficient durable, use fewer resources, are healthy to live in and remain affordable. Habitat builds sustainable homes using construction standards that pay attention to water and energy efficiency, safety and health including indoor air quality and materials conservation.
Our Green Commitment:
Paterson Habitat for Humanity is an ecumenical ministry committed to building decent, safe affordable housing that is energy-efficient, environmentally responsible and economical to maintain. We are faithful to building quality homes that are designed to be durable and healthy through the use of sustainable methods and materials where possible. We build in neighborhood locations that provide easy access to services and public transportation. Our homeowner families are the building blocks for stronger communities.
Paterson Habitat is an Energy Star certified builder
Our homes are at least 15% more energy efficient then what the IECC 2009 Residential Building International Energy Conservation code requires as measured in achieving a HERS index of 65 or below. HERS (Home Energy Rating System) is a national standard for rating the efficiency of a home as measured and assigned by state approved 3rd party entities through on-site progress and final inspections The scale is for 100 to 0 with 100 representing a very inefficient home and 0 representing a home that uses no energy. An energy efficient home costs about 2-3% more up front to build but reduces the total cost of ownership over the life of the home providing our Habitat families with significant saving opportunities.
Why build sustainably?
We build sustainably to take better care of our environment, our homeowners, and our volunteers. Our goals are to reduce the home’s monthly and life cycle costs and increase efficiency and durability while providing healthy environments for families to live and work.
How is Paterson Habitat building sustainably?
Energy efficiency features at our homes start with a tight building envelope leveraging precast concrete insulated foundations on an insulated slab at the first floor garage level. Air sealing and more insulation, energy efficient windows and doors seal the building envelope. The efficiency of operating these homes will be further assured with high efficiency heating and energy and water efficient appliances.
Habitat works in concert with many partners to continually improve the quality of our homes and the building process. We find green building techniques and materials that are comparable in price to traditional counterparts. We continually seek new ideas and educate the volunteers that work on each build site.
Benefits to our homeowners, communities and donors:
1. Reduced energy usage
- Tighter building envelope (to reduce energy loss)
- Energy efficient heating, appliances and lighting
2. Reduce water usage
- Low flow plumbing fixtures
- Efficient design
3. Increased durability
- Moisture management
- Quality construction
4. Reduced maintenance
- Education (e.g. filter maintenance) and energy awareness
- A green building produces less waste and less pollution then a traditionally built home thus reducing the impact on the community during the building process.
- A green building produces less energy reducing the impact on the greater community through awareness and wise usage of scarce natural resources.
- Our sustainable community development strategy includes a Neighborhood Stabilization Program focused on the elimination of abandoned and blighted properties transforming these to productive properties that in turn brings revenues into the city.
- We further enhance quality of life through homeownership that brings family focused community activity to a previously barren neighborhood.
- In established Habitat Neighborhoods we are working on revitalization strategies to further advance homeowners in sustainably built homes and bring other homes up to current energy efficient standards, educating and connecting community members to advance their neighborhood.
- Assures effectiveness of funds invested as we strike the balance between energy efficient, healthy and affordable homes built.
- Builds social and environmental capital as the urban community contributes to the quality of life for surrounding communities to drive sustainable productivity.
- Contributes to keeping our air and water cleaner and saves energy for future generations.