There’s no place like home
One of the great things about living at Becketwood is that we can remodel and refurbish our units to fit our own personal styles. The cooperative provides regular allowances for flooring, paint and appliances. Members can choose from the standard options, or pay the difference for upgrades. Some units have been completely remodeled, top to bottom with kitchen cabinetry, hardwood floors, lighting fixtures, special paint colors, window treatments and more. Our helpful refurbishment staff provides coordination with vendors and creative suggestions.
On being green
Many people downsize when they move to Becketwood. Smaller is “greener” because it uses less of everything. When remodeling, it’s important to know that environmentally friendly products are also human-health friendly. A new home environment that contains natural, renewable and/or sustainable materials is a positive move. Here is a detailed PDF with resources. Some things to consider:
- Paint, stains and finishes – Look for low VOC (volatile organic compounds) or zero-VOC materials.
- Appliances – Choose Energy-Star or better appliances. Refrigerators with bottom freezers use less energy than top freezers or side-by-sides. Microwaving or convection baking uses less energy than conventional ovens. Choose a dishwasher that is water efficient and allow dishes to air dry.
- Faucets and fixtures – New faucets and showerheads are more efficient than the old ones. Consider a dual-flush water saving toilet.
- Lighting – Use compact fluorescent bulbs or LED lighting. LEDs cost more but use less than half as much energy as compact fluorescents and last five times as long. Otherwise, dimmer switches help save energy.
- Floors – Wood floors do not retain pollen, pet dander, bacteria and mold. Look for wood that has been sustainably harvested, certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), or bamboo, which is really a grass and replaces itself in five years. Cork and linoleum are made from renewable sources and are nontoxic. Select carpet and rugs that have the Green Label Plus certification. If installing carpet, make sure the padding is nontoxic.
- Cabinets and furniture – Use FSC-certified wood as described above or formaldehyde-free plywood or particleboard.
- Countertops – Many eco-friendly types are available, including recycled glass that has the look of stone
- Many items removed from your unit, such as cupboards and countertops, can be sent to the local Habitat for Humanity Restore, not the landfill.
There are ongoing efforts to continually improve energy conservation at Becketwood. Our Maintenance staff is conducting an energy audit that is focused on saving electricity. An energy saver switch has been installed in the air conditioning system. Water heater valves are being replaced and the boiler temperature has been reduced to save energy. Window replacement is being researched. At the present time, the building cannot be heated 100% by solar energy, but it is an option for the future. All light bulbs are gradually being replaced by energy efficient lighting. A plan is in place to improve attic insulation. We have in place an Energy Conservation Task Force, composed of Becketwood Members.