Published at Tuesday, March 19th, 2019 - 00:06:20 AM. Outdoor. By Aili Otto.
Why its happening: Natural disasters are occurring more frequently and sometimes with little warning. The most forward-thinking homebuilders are developing resilient solutions for new and existing homes. “The weather is getting almost biblical, and homes that dont address that run a legitimate risk of being seriously damaged or destroyed and having their resale value put in question,” says Nathan Kipnis of Kipnis Architecture and Planning Solutions in Chicago. His designs include oversized gutters and downspouts that direct water to rain gardens or other landscape features that can handle intense rain. He also recommends an ice and water shield on the roof to create a rain barrier, so the interior has greater protection. Coastal homes should add hurricane straps where the roof and walls intersect, he says, to reduce possible wind damage. Sustainable features are also critical to decarbonize the built environment and conserve resources. Kipnis favors all-electric systems, including induction cooktops, mini-split HVAC systems, and heat pump water heaters. Homeowners could take it a step further and have the garage wired to be a charging station for electric cars and add solar panels to the roof.
Keeping up with a pet takes work, but features can be built and materials selected to pare maintenance. According to a 2015 study conducted by Houzz, the best floors for most pet owners are hardwood, such as oak or mahogany. Homeowners might consider a distressed or matte finish with a sealant if scratches are an issue. Tile and stone also work well. Collins tries to steer buyers away from carpet, which can make removing pet odors tough. Also encourage your clients to favor microfibers with tight weaves for upholstery, says Tracy Lynn, principal designer and owner of the Tracy Lynn Studio in San Diego. Thelen recommends installing a central vacuum cleaning system with multiple outlets so sweeping up pet hair is easier. If animal-related allergies are an issue, Collins recommends an eco-friendly energy recovery ventilator, which continually exchanges stale for fresh air.
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