Custom Home – how to get started (part 2)


To catch up on this series “Custom Home – how to get started,”, part one is posted here. So now you have decided to hire an architect. How do you find the right architect for your custom home?    Architects all have areas of specialization. First you need to find a firm that focuses on residential…

Green term defined: solar reflectance index


When looking at cities on Google earth, we see a lot of dark surfaces. Most roofing is a dark color. Pavement is typically a dark color. It appears that even the majority of our cars are dark. This all contributes to something called “heat island impact.” To combat this a designer can use light colored…

Architect on Vacation


I rarely take a vacation, but when I do, I find cool buildings! Here are some pictures from our trip a couple of weeks ago. My favorite buildings found in Durham.   Buildings in Savannah (really needed more time here, only had a couple hours total. Buildings in Naples. South of the Border. And an…

Old Town Harrisonburg custom home


Beck builders is making great progress on the construction of the custom home we designed in Old Town Harrisonburg. Here are some pictures to update the progress. From the custom porch rails, roof deck, secret spaces, and natural parking areas, this home is special. Previous updates here,  here, here and here.

Custom Home – how to get started


Calling an architect to some seems like a luxury or at least an expense that can be avoided. There are many options to get plans for a new home. If you work hard at it you can find a plan online that is close to what you want or you can find a builder that…

Green Term Defined: Construction Waste


Construction waste is not talked about much (or at all) in the general public. That dumpster on site gets filled and emptied on a regular basis. Some is sent to a landfill and some gets recycled for a future use. Construction waste consists of those materials at a job site that cannot be easily used…

Solarize Harrisonburg is launching!


Solarize Harrisonburg program is launching!   This program is part of a grass roots effort in the U S to increase the use of solar to produce energy and to lower installation and equipment costs through a bulk purchase process. Following our initial meeting on June 2, over 40 individuals have indicated interest in participating.  Efforts are not…

Want to advance your green building knowledge, attend this conference


This event has been postponed.   Registration is now open for the Mid-Atlantic Sustainability Conference. A special offer to the first 30 people to register will get a free copy of the National Green Building Standard ICC 700-2012. This conference features industry experts in the subjects of sustainable sites, alternative energy, legal green, building science,…

Keep the critters out of your crawl space by encapsulating it


Talking to a friend this weekend, she has had animals getting into her crawl space. To fix this you have to first get the animals out. Then to keep them out, you should encapsulate the crawl space closing off all the vents, holes, gaps, and cracks. This will keep it critter free, improve indoor air-quality…

Green Term Defined: ELF


I was visiting a charming little farmer’s market in Durham this weekend and stumbled on a green product called the ELF. This bicycle is an excellent example of innovation, green design, and style. This battery assisted, solar charged bike will go 1.5 hours on a charge depending on total weight on a charge and allows you…

Valley Business Keynote


Valley Business Keynote  July 24 | 11am-1pm JMU Festival Center Ballroom 1301 Carrier Drive | Harrisonburg The Second Annual Valley Business Keynote event will take place on Thursday, July 24, 2014, from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. at James Madison University’s Festival Conference Center. The Valley Business Keynote is open to the public and is a cooperative initiative of…

Louisa County’s newest community – Waverly Place is now open


Our latest luxury living community has just opened their doors, Waverly Place is now open in Louisa County, VA. Construction is finished on several buildings and the entire project will be complete very soon. Check out these pictures from the ribbon cutting event.