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  • Jenny Simon

Isn't "Green" Getting Tired?

Updated: May 8

If you’re using the word “green” to describe your commitment to high-performance, energy-efficient or otherwise “sustainable” building practices, the homes you sell, or your company, please stop now.   

Green is a color, not a commitment. It doesn’t describe the value of your efforts to build better housing and the resulting benefits it brings to your homeowners. Not even close.  


Let’s try to be more specific from now on. If your homes reduce energy use and costs, then say so … and by how much. If they save water, use certified sustainable timber, or help reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired electricity plants – ideally certified by a reputable third party – then shout it out.   

Better yet, could homes "give back?" We believe so. We see a future where homes respond to the changing needs of the consumer, the builder, and the environment. We are on the road to get there, and we believe we will see it on our lifetime. Our vision for 'Homes That Give Back' is one that ensures that homes are safe, healthy, durable, comfortable, efficient, responsible, connected, and affordable. It's a tall order to get there, but every step that the industry takes is a step in the right direction.


And with these steps comes data... make that data resonate with homebuyers. Use it to help them compare builders objectively and push you (and the industry overall) to do better and remain competitive, relevant, and effective. You might even gain their trust.  


The key is to approach your commitment to better-built, higher-performing housing strategically and holistically. Focus on what your buyers want in terms of lifestyle and figure out how to deliver it through better, more integrated design and more consistent building practices. Turn your data and product specs into easily understandable benefits. Make it real, relatable, and quantifyable. Put yourself in their seat and think “what would sell me?”   The answer is probably not generic "green" terminology.


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