OK! Wow what a project! My husband and I are buying his dad's home, the one he grew up in and is it ever a mess! Everything from leaky sinks to needing a new furnace and hot water heater. The entire house is wired for a 220, that's it! We can't even run an electric dryer in this home and on top of it all we want to go green. HaHa this should be a fun adventure!
Mostly, we know we want to go green using ecosystem-friendly materials and so on... But other than that, I have no idea what going green really means. What I would like is a check list of things that I should check into. Such as wind mills, solar panels, appliances, and what else is there? Also, we DO want a wind mill but what else goes along with that? What kind of eqiptment do I need?
I hope you have A LOT of money for these things. Wind and solar energy are still VERY expensive technologies. I'm talking 10's of thousands of dollars. Are you prepared for that kind of investments???
Personally, I'd start with things that are a bit easier and more cost effective like, conservation and efficiency. Look at insulating the house properly, making sure doors and windows are of good quality. Low flow faucets and toilets. Look into a high efficiency furnace and a/c unit. Energy star appliances.
If you did just those things, you're well on your way to being "green" and your monthly utility bills will reflect this.
Angus couldn't be more right! Get ready to shell out big bucks for things that make what really is an insignificant difference in the grand scheme of things. I'm not saying don't do it if it makes you feel better, but the market hasn't driven green building hard enough to make it cost-effective.
In the long run, you're doing much more for the environment by building a very efficient home full of very efficient appliances.
The US Green Building Council is a good resource for info.