Green Portland: A Design & Remodeling Blog

Presented by Green Design & Remodeling to increase knowledge about home design and remodeling

WOW! It is cold out! December 19, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — greendesignllc @ 5:12 pm

I hope everyone is enjoying the cold weather and a slower paced life. I must admit it is kind of nice, other then the 24 hour Artic Blast News. We will be back to our blogging after the Holiday, and once things thaw out. Hope you are staying warm!




A Greener World Means Using Greener Wood December 11, 2008

I came across an article on Market Watch about the sustainablity benifits of using wood in construction. In today’s modern age, there are a number of other building materials available, but none of them leave as little a carbon footprint or can be “renewed” like lumber. If forests are harvested resbonsibly than there is little reason why we shouldn’t be using more of this “green” product. You can read more about sustainable forestry at Sustainable NW and the FSC.

Oregon Forest

Oregon Forest


NOW is a good time to remodel? December 10, 2008

I was trying to think of what to write today–with all that is happening in the economy, even my brain feels slowed down. Then I remembered hearing someone say “Could there be a better time to remodel?” This struck me as a strange thing to say (even though I want it to be true), so I decided to see what others are saying:

I found this article on Google,

“Despite the market, remodeling actually retains and increases the value of the home and puts the home owner in a better position when the market begins to be favorable again. In addition, the homeowner gets to enjoy the freshly updated living space.”

I never thought of remodeling your home as a way to “retain” value, only as a means to increase it, but this makes sense. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that just because house pricing fell, doesn’t mean that remodeling prices have. An interesting article from LA Times talks about this.



What you need to keep in mind is that remodeling prices are based on labor and materials–neither of which was inflated during the housing bubble, and thus are not going to deflate. I have listed some good estimates on my website on what remodeling costs are.


What’s your preference: Low or No VOC paint? December 3, 2008

Filed under: Green Remodeling,Healthy home design,Home Design,Remodeling — greendesignllc @ 9:35 pm

Paint can

Back to the VOC issue:   There are questions about whether a paint retains its “Low VOC” label once colorant has been added.  Paints that advertise themselves as a “low VOC” or “no VOC” might only be that in the base color.  Some pigments may add VOCs, negating the benefits, BUT, I think it’s better to at least start with the low or no VOCs.  Here’s the balancing act:  No VOCs, but not a great paint, or some VOCs and great coverage (using less paint).  Again it comes down to research and choices.  We have found that Benjamin Moore’s low VOC, Aura paint goes on and covers very well; we often specify it.  There are no VOC paints – Home Depot’s Freshaire that, as I understand, uses soy-based colorant, and locally owned YOLO found at EcoHaus (and other dealers) and also is Green Seal Certified (which qualifies it for LEED certified projects).