When we bought our home 6 years ago our goal was that one day we would remodel it in a way that would reflect not only our lifestyles but also our sustainable ideologies.
I spent some time trying to educate myself on various approaches architects and home owners had used to meet such similar goals. I reached out to many in the construction business and a lot of them helped me tremendously.
The biggest challenge was always balancing ideas with budget.
The easiest though for me to decide was deconstruction. Traditional remodels involve demolition which is basically expediting removal and disposal of the portions of the home that we no longer need. As our landfills are filling up cities and governments are trying to impose more regulation to improve this situation. But is there a choice that I could make as a consumer and change this approach.
My search led me to a deconstruction company that attempted not only to recycle and donate as much as they could but also give back some money in the form of a atx rebate to the owner for their approach.
The process took about 10 days and the workers carefully dismatneld reusable items like doors,windows,hardware,cabinets , fixtures, wrought iron fireplaces so that it could either be sold in second hand markets of recycled efficiently. The appriaser also shared how some of my single pane windows coule reach some home in a third world country and be their first ever windows of their home!
The deconstruction company also took the effort to de-nail all the wood and cut it into certain usable sizes which coule be either sent to a wood factory or resold.
Here is a quick video of the deconstruction process. I decided to deconstruct v/s demolish. My 2 main reasons are as follows: 1. When you do remodel v/s a new custom home it costs almost the same. You get a tax rebate which offsets the initial cost one has to incur with a licensed appraiser and Deconstruction company. 2. We get to donate usable parts of the home which makes way more sense than dumping into landfill. With respect to the remodel itself,most of my addition is to the back of the home. This optimized cost and scope of work. It also worked well with local regulations and its processing cost and time. Seeing a home come apart brings mixed emotions as a home owner. I have a lot of clients who are hesitant to start because of fears of the unknown! But the old has to give way to the new and although this is a journey that will be an emotional one no matter what the end result will be a better more comfortable life and an improvement in the quality of life.