Tessa watching concrete.jpg

Why did we decide to build a healthy house?

I’ve got 5 reasons, to start.

1. Our house of seven years – built in 1948, and an awesome, well-made structure – made us sick. It had a water leak, and mold formed, and that mold spit out toxins called ‘mycotoxins’, that some molds create in an attempt to kill other molds (kind of like male lions eating the cubs of lion prides that they take over…), and which can be deadly when inhaled within the continuously re-circulated air of most modern homes…

2. Houses today are built with energy efficiency in mind – not the health of the occupants. Which is strange….? It’s like emphasizing how the locally produced breakfast cereal is made in a green, solar-powered plant, in the same city you live in, with water catchment tanks and net-zero energy consumption – is still filled with sugar, corn syrup, and other unhealthy ingredients. Making it good for the planet – but not good for you?

3. Because it’s not fair that the people we hire to build or renovate our houses and apartments are subjected to the toxins, pollutants, particulate, and other adverse aspects of working on our structures, when there are healthy ways of building readily and cheaply available.

4. Because there is really not a low or no-VOC (volatile organic compound) paint available from Sherwin-Williams, Lowes, Home Depot, or any other paint store (save Treehouse) out there, and we really should all switch to mineral based paints that are truly NO-VOC. (Case in point? Our painter, who has been spraying paint for almost 30 years, sprayed our RomaBio paint without a mask on – something he said he has never done before in his entire career. No smell, no toxins, no nothing. Just clean, healthy, 100-year formulated paint.

5. Because it’s hilarious to us the lengths that builders go to avoid change. I went to one of the national builders show this week, and the lectures were all about keeping water out of your house by proper window flashing, etc.. But if water will always find a way into houses, and - once it’s there – carry such a strong potential to wreak havoc, cause mold, break down your structure, and so much else – why shouldn’t we start thinking about making houses out of materials that don’t care if they get wet? Meaning, if our houses (walls, building envelopes, etc.) can get wet, dry out, and not cause health problems – isn’t that the better way of building? Why treat heart disease with Lipitor or open heart surgery when you can address it’s cause, and change your diet? Doesn’t that seem like a more intelligent approach?