About your ECO friend…

My name is Terry and I am an eco enthusiast, an artist, a Calgary REALTOR® and a person that loves to design, build, create and renovate. Put this together and you have your eco friend.

log home exterior before and after

Our log home renovation, showing the exterior before and after

Renovating a Neglected Log Home

Mark and I (Terry – your eco friend) have always been eco enthusiasts and dream of one day building and living in an off-grid home. A few years ago we renovated a log home on 15 acres just outside of Calgary. This was a huge renovation and took just under 2 years to complete. Regretfully, the home was sold shortly after completion.

Your ECO friend installing river rock to the fireplace

Fortunately the home was sold in far better shape than when we bought it. We were able to put in solar thermal (a heating system that included solar hot water),  a HRV, quality insulation in the ceiling, all new windows, low VOC (volatile organic compound or a generally unhealthy substance) finishes, low flow faucets and dual flush toilets as well as other eco-friendly elements into the home. See Post Renovating a Log Home here.

I acted as the interior designer and general contractor. Although we did hire contractors for specialty items, such as the log work, plumbing and electrical, much of the work done by us.

Living and working in the home was an awesome experience and helped us to understand more about what you can do to make your home greener. And as the work was so extensive, we now understand more about construction than an average person.

The process could be frustrating at times. I would often ask a contractor to do things a certain way and get objections back. This is illustrated when we had to replace the septic system and I wanted to recycle grey water (water from the sinks, tubs, hand basin, washing machine) to several trees on the property rather than to the septic. If I had the confidence then that I have today, we would have done more.

Mark and Terry’s Excellent ECO Adventure

I discovered this confidence when Mark and I had an opportunity to visit over 50 green and eco-friendly homes in Canada and the USA. Several of the people visited overcame opposition or they found a way to do it anyway.

You will find these stories and hopefully benefit from other green homeowners experience in this blog. This site is filled with eco-friendly homes, tips and technologies and is an overview of several green building methods. The site shows the basics of the home’s construction as well as the choices each homeowner made, whether they are budget related or/and a health concern. It is meant to give you a basic overview on the technologies used, so you can understand why they may or may not be a good choice for you.

Our Solar Thermal panels as seen from the finished deck

It was an amazing tour. All of the homeowners visited were an incredible inspiration to us and I hope to you.

Additional articles come from a desire to be healthier as well as helping others to live this way. There are problems with how our governments regulate our environment, our personal products as well as the food we have on our tables. It is only through education that we can overcome these and unite to make our populations healthier and therefore happier. With our own projects, I try to make eco-friendly choices. My aim is to inspire others to at least make their choices at a little bit better and greener.

Cheers. I hope you enjoy the site. Your ECO friend Terry

Your ECO friends Mark and Terry visiting a construction site in Whistler