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Advantages of Alternative Home Building

Updated on October 2, 2010

Alternative home building supports finding new ways of building that are environmentally friendly, allowing us to continue to live and thrive on this planet. This is the main benefit of using alternative home building methods; it is good for the earth. And of course, what is good for the earth is good for all the people who live here on Earth. Alternative home building improves communities and encourages all nations to be responsible in their growth. But environmental benefits are not the only benefits we see from the use of alternative home building methods.

In addition to improving the environment, alternative home building offers benefits to individuals and communities. There are significant health benefits to those living in homes that are built using natural methods. The importance of the physical and psychological wellbeing of the people living in these homes should not be underestimated. Healthy people are able to contribute more to the communities around them. And healthy communities lead to innovation and development of whole societies. By improving the conditions of individual homes, we thereby improve the conditions for people throughout the world.

Finally, there are cost benefits to be had for people who are building with alternative building methods. Many people fear that alternative home building is cost-prohibitive. This has been the case in recent history, but that trend is changing. And most people find that using alternative home building methods reduces the expenditures required by their homes over time. This saves them money on a regular basis and may even increase the value of the home at a more rapid rate than that of other homes due to the increased interest of new home owners in this kind of building.

As we have seen then, there are three major components to the benefits of alternative home building. There are environmental benefits, health benefits for the occupants of the home, and cost savings. Let us take a closer look at each of those components:

Environmental Benefits of Alternative Home Building

One of the major reasons people are interested in alternative home building is because it offers significant benefits to the earth around us. We are rapidly depleting the earth’s resources and people want to do what they can to reduce their eco-footprint on the earth. Sustainability is something that we do not necessarily because we are concerned about our own place on the earth, but more so because we recognize the importance of offering a thriving planet to the generations that come after us. Alternative home building uses natural and recycled materials to help make the earth last longer so that others can enjoy it as much as we have.

Alternative home building takes materials that are currently going to landfills and makes use of them. You would be shocked to find out what just gets wasted in the landfills that litter our country’s landscape. Sure, there are materials we know can be recycled but that get trashed instead — plastic bottles and aluminum cans, for example. But there are also materials in the dump that you would never even think might be there. Large forests of trees are just rotting away, buried in the midst of other trash (or worse yet, being burned to take up less space) because cities have removed them from urban areas and do not have anything else to do with them. Construction waste from new developments that could be used to build brand new homes instead heads to the landfill. Almost every material that you find in the dump can be repurposed to be useful to someone somewhere. Much of this can be used in the building of homes. But instead, it sits there, waiting to decompose.

That decomposition often takes far longer than the amount of time the earth has. If we continue to fill the landfills at the rate we have done in the last hundred years, the earth is going to be overrun with our waste. The United States is the country contributing most to this problem. And we are also the country with the greatest potential for changing the situation. We have the resources and the wealth necessary to make those changes and improve the earth around us. And that change starts at home, literally. Alternative home building is something any individual can do. He or she reaps the immediate benefits of a wonderful, energy-efficient and cost-efficient home, while also contributing to the sustainability of the world. It is a win-win situation.

Health Benefits of Alternative Home Building

There are two different levels on which the individual who lives in an alternatively built home feels healthier. First, there is the actual physical health of the home’s occupants. This is improved by the natural qualities of the construction and the indoor air and water quality of the home. And second, there is the psychological health of the home’s occupants. Living in an alternative home creates a sense of peacefulness, a feeling of wellbeing, and a connection to the earth that many people find invaluable.

The actual health and comfort offered by the alternatively built home is of utmost importance. We spend a large portion of our time in our homes, especially now that remote offices have become increasingly common due to changes in our technology. While we are spending this time in our homes, we want to be healthy. And, of course, we want to create the healthiest environment we can for those we love and live with. The alternatively built home serves to offer us this option. Building with natural materials reduces the amount of allergies home occupants experience, improves general health because of the much better air quality, and also offers a sense of physical comfort.

Additionally, building an alternative home exposes people to a community that is interested in a healthy lifestyle. The home itself provides entry into this community in which general knowledge about healing and health are readily acquired. The home is just a stepping stone to the holistic healthiness that is supported by this community. The individual contributes to the healthfulness of the community by supporting alternative home building methods. And the community supports the efforts of the individual. It creates a positive living environment in which people can thrive, working together in an interconnected manner to offer benefits to the earth.

Community is important to the health of the homeowner in another way as well. Alternative home building creates a psychological health that has far-reaching benefits. You become part of a community and that community helps to support you in a back-and-forth relationship that is conducive to creativity and health. Knowing that you have worked to do your part to improve the Earth, you are able to approach the day with mindfulness toward change. The effects of this kind of healthiness within the community are profound, far-reaching, and indescribable.

There is a saying that “love is what makes a house a home.” The love that is felt for the earth is contained in the walls of the environmentally friendly house, turning it into a home in a way that anyone who enters its doors can recognize. This creates a healthiness that is almost indescribable but which is regularly captured by people who try to describe the reason they feel so good inside their alternatively built home.

Cost Benefits of Alternative Home Building

Having an eco-friendly home usually saves money for the occupants of the home. The actual building of the home may or may not be affordable in comparison to traditional home building. This depends on a variety of factors. However, it is invariably true that the eco-friendly home usually saves money for the home owner over the long run because significantly less money is spent on water, energy and other household bills. Additionally it if it is true that there are health benefits to living in a green home then there is the possibility that money will be saved on long term health care.

Summary of Benefits

It is undeniable that there are significant benefits to alternative home building in comparison with standard construction. The benefits to the environment are the main reason most people start thinking about building a green home, but they are just the starting point of the rewards that can be had from building and living in this kind of housing. Once they begin researching the facts of alternative home building, most people find that, despite being glad to improve the environment, their primary motivation for continuing with the building plan in a green way is because of the significant health benefits offered to them through this kind of building.

And it does not hurt that there could be cost savings involved as well. What has long been considered the greatest disadvantage to alternative home building has been a lack of information about the topic and the prohibitively high cost of the building process. Both of these trends are changing. More and more information is available about cost-effective methods of alternative home building. This has changed a disadvantage to an advantage. We are likely to see more of this in the years to come.

It is important to note that the benefits of alternative home building keep changing and growing. This is because naturally built homes create a better sense of life for those within them and that leads to a cycle of constant change and improvement. Healthy people are more likely to explore innovative methods of improving their own lives and the lives of the planet. This will only lead to more and more benefits of alternative home building as time goes on.


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  • profile image


    4 years ago

    Thanks Sima and Hadi for wonderful prmaogrs. It was good to see a real example a successful person with self-confidence who is not afraid of hardships and knows what she is aiming for and achieves it!Dear Alireza, and others, please send the link to this program instead of emailing the audio files. This way others get to know our podcast too. Thanks so much.

  • profile image


    4 years ago

    Before you take any acne treatment, make sure you know the root cause of the acne. You might end up spiendng a lot of money on the wrong solutions. Often, taking the wrong treatment only aggravates the acne.

  • Brent Stone profile image

    Brent Stone 

    7 years ago

    I have been a residential builder for over 20 years and I am finding my clients are now asking for more alternative building materials and processes. You have hit the nail right on the head so to speak.

    Great article. Thanks for sharing.

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 

    8 years ago from London, UK

    Great eye-opener and interesting read.

  • FirstStepsFitness profile image


    8 years ago

    Welcome to HubPages :) Great information and interesting read ! Looking forward to more along this eco friendly subject .


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