Get Green with Style Blog

Green Book Review – Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies

by Hilary Sopata, LEED AP

Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies
Written by Eric Corey Freed, LEED AP

Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies is about the bones and structure of your home.  It prompts you to think more about, “Where did this material come from,” rather than our usual assessment of aesthetics and how well it works.  “Chapter 5: Looking at a Material’s Lifecycle: From Cradle to Grave,” is all about this and has some excellent information about where products come from, how they are delivered and installed, how they are maintained, and even considerations about what happens to these materials when we’re done with them.

Freed says, “An interior designer can often make the difference between a good project and a great project.”  While I give do-it-yourself (DIY) enthusiasts a lot of credit, I have to agree with the author on this one.  It’s kind of like the difference between a fine painting in an art gallery that has been created by a gifted person through significant amounts of practice as well as both internal and external critiques and your child’s precious finger painting from preschool that gets prime placement on your refrigerator.  Sure the one your child created has a place in your heart because you have a close emotional connection to it.  When you create your own home, you have that same emotional connection to it whether or not it meets the standards of critiqued good design practices.

Overall, Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies provides excellent basic to intermediate information about what specific materials are, how they work, and what the considerations are for choosing them.  Freed addresses the building shell and installed materials for a green home, so it is geared towards homeowners remodeling or starting from scratch.  The book finishes off with “Part V: The Part of Tens” which provides several top-10 lists for those with a shorter attention span.

Freed, Eric Corey (2008). Green Building & Remodeling for Dummies (1st ed.). Wiley Publishing, Inc.. ISBN 978-0-470-17559-0


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