LEED Accountability

The US Green Building Council announced last week that it is going to begin collecting post-certification energy data from all the buildings it certifies, following independent and in-house research showing that as much as a quarter of LEED-certified buildings are underperforming on energy usage. 

Follow the link to Sunday’s New York Times article below and let us know your thoughts.  Should LEED-certified homes be held accountable for energy use and other qualifying features going forward from the date of certification in order to hang onto their LEED certificate?  It’s a conversation we’re having in the Residential Green Building Committee of our local USGBC chapter.   We’d like to hear your thoughts as well.   Read on:

Some Buildings Not Living up to Green Label, NYT 8/30/09


September 1, 2009 at 7:06 pm Leave a comment

Northside Urban Farm (and its for sale)!

How does your garden grow?

Guerrilla Farmer in Northside

Article in Cincinnati Magazine

Urban farming is on the rise…. and it seems like everyone these days is trying to grow something in their backyard. I’ve gotten small success out of my first attempts at gardening this summer. And I know I’m not alone, the number of homes growing vegetables this year is prediced to jump more than 40% this year compared with just two years ago, according to the National Gardening Association, a non-profit organization for gardening education.   Wow, thats a lot of veggies…

Well, there are some out there who are not new comers to the gardening scene.  One such person is a current client of ours who just to happens to be featured in this months Cincinnati Magazine as the “Northside Guerrilla Farmer.”  Marica Bernstein is a gardening force to be reckoned with.  Marica takes urban gardening and turns it into urban farming.  As you stroll through the garden, you’ll just be amazed at the produce and flowers that abound.  Marica is insistent that it is not very hard to maintain and that the fruits of your labor will be plentiful!  Imagine fresh veggies, herbs and fruits throughout the year… mmm I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.

Well the good news for those of you looking for a home and wanting a built in farm/garden this lovely Northside property is actually on the market!  Check it out 4223 Leeper St. – Don’t worry Marica isn’t abandoning her love for veggies anytime soon, she’s just moving on to  larger adventures!  If you’re interested in seeing this great home and fantastic garden – give us a call and move in right in time for harvest 🙂

UUrban farming is on the rise…. and it seems like everyone these days is trying to grow something in their backyard. I’ve gotten small success out of my first attempts at gardening this summer. And I know I’m not alone, the number of homes growing vegetables jumped more than 40% this year compared with just two years ago, according to the National Gardening Association, a non-profit organization for gardening education.rban farming is on the rise…. and it seems like everyone these days is trying to grow something in their backyard. I’ve gotten small success out of my first attempts at gardening this summer. And I know I’m not alone, the number of homes growing vegetables jumped more than 40% this year compared with just two years ago, according to the National Gardening Association, a non-profit organization for gardening education.

August 25, 2009 at 10:06 pm Leave a comment

Clean Energy Conference

Take note of this very worthwhile event – information on how to register below:


Ohio Lt. Governor Lee Fisher to Deliver Keynote Speech

CINCINNATI, OH – May 5, 2009 – International, national and regional experts will gather in Cincinnati to present the latest developments in clean energy from both sides of the Atlantic at the European-American Chamber of Commerce (EACC) Conference and Gala on Thursday, May 21, 2009 at the Westin Hotel, 21 East Fifth Street, Cincinnati, OH 45202. A Tech Expo and Gala Dinner will follow the conference.

The Clean Energy conference, held from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., will present information on public policy and provide international, national and state regulatory updates; detail utility industry response; explain legal and liability issues pertaining to international standardization; and cite technologies and applications. Speakers include Luisa Ragher, Head of Section for Transportation, Energy and Environment, EU Delegation; Sarah Ladislaw, Center for Strategic and International Studies; and Dr. Mark Shanahan, Ohio Governor’s Energy Advisor, among others.

A Tech Expo and cocktail networking reception will immediately follow the conference where participants will have the opportunity to meet Tri-State companies promoting their clean energy products and services. The Gala Dinner will round out the evening from 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. where Ohio Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher will deliver the keynote.

Admission to the conference is $75 for members, $100 for non-members; admission to the dinner is $110 for members, $125 for non-members; admission to both the conference and dinner is $175 for members, $215 for non-members. To register, please call 513-852-6510.

About The EACC

The European American Chamber of Commerce (EACC) is leading the effort in enhancing business relations & economic development between Europe and companies in the Greater Cincinnati area, through collaboration and education.   The EACC, based in Cincinnati, works in partnership with the EACC, Paris, France, and the EACC,New York.  EACC member companies represent a wide variety of business categories and include companies with US and European headquarters, and Cincinnati area companies doing business or prospective business in Europe.  The EACC includes seven distinct and active committees to serve and provide meaningful outreach to members.   For membership or other information, visit www.europe-cincinnati.com.

May 13, 2009 at 11:57 pm Leave a comment

In the News…

Check out the latest from our friends at CincyChic:

Home, Green Home!

And be sure to get out and enjoy all the local offerings on Earth Day, like the Eco Go Go Fashion Show on Fountain Square at noon through the flower carpet, among other great events!

April 21, 2009 at 10:23 pm Leave a comment

Green Retrofits for Older Homes

Jami and I advocate renovation and redevelopment of existing buildings when possible –  the vast majority of our business is residential re-sale, close to the urban core.  A great number of our buyers are looking for impressive, older homes with period details and loaded with charm.  These Victorians, Neo-Colonials, Italianate, Second Empire and other 100+ year old homes that we are so fortunate to have lining our city streets tend to have “space issues” – not the old concern of the past that a family would outgrow a starter home, but rather “It’s too big!  How on earth am I going to pay for the energy costs of this beast?”  

Cincinnati has managed to foster a stable housing market in comparison to national fluctuations, and housing prices have stayed very accessible for many families, allowing modest home buyers to afford these grand old homes in neighborhoods all across the city.  A modest price tag makes that original charm even more appealing… until you bring in the thermal imaging camera.

Those of you that know how we work are familiar with our prescription:  You are in love with that large, drafty old house?  You don’t have to give up your dreams – begin with an energy audit!  Let the experts tell you where energy is being lost, and we can help you with the resources to begin the green retrofits and upgrades for all budgets.  Anyone catch this Op-Ed in the New York Times last Sunday?    Read on…

This Wasteful Old House, Richard Moe

April 10, 2009 at 12:33 pm Leave a comment

Greenwashing… Tired of “Green?”

I can’t seem to say two sentences about the environment, sustainability or eco-friendly without using  the word “green.”  I am so tired of “green” that I nearly choke on it as it passes my lips… and I’m about as “green” as they come!  Be a responsible consumer, think about your choices in the marketplace, the companies you support and their impact on the environment. 

This just in from The Center for Media Research, thanks to our friend Ann Keeling of Christofoli/Keeling:

Thursday, April 9, 2009 

Consumers Want Proof It’s Green 

According to the new BBMG Conscious Consumer Report: Redefining Value in a New Economy, 23% of U.S. consumers say they have “no way of knowing” if a product is green or actually does what it claims. But, 77% agree that they “can make a positive difference by purchasing products from socially or environmentally responsible companies,” and they are actively seeking information to verify green claims.

To find the necessary information, consumers are:

  • most likely to turn to consumer reports …..29%
  • most likely to look at certification seals or labels on products …..28%
  • most likely to consider the list of ingredients on products …..27%
  • least likely to look to statements on product packaging …..11%
  • least likely to believe company advertising …..5%

Raphael Bemporad, co-founder of BBMG, says “… consumers are redefining what truly matters and evaluating purchases based on both value and values…  by delivering… price, performance and purpose… brands will be able to close the green trust gap… “

Key findings from the Conscious Consumer Report (2009):

  • 67% Americans agree that “even in tough economic times, it is important to purchase products with social and environmental benefits”
  • 51% say they are “willing to pay more” for them
  • 66% say price very important in purchase decision
  • 64% look for quality  
  • 55% want “good for your health”
  • 49% look for “made in the USA”

Green benefits have increased in importance since last year, says the report:

  • Energy efficiency (47% very important in 2008, 41% in 2007)
  • Locally grown or made nearby (32% in 2008, 26% in 2007)
  • All natural (31% in 2008, 24% in 2007)
  • Made from recycled materials (29% in 2008, 22% in 2007)
  • USDA organic (22% in 2008, 17% in 2007)

When asked unaided which companies come to mind as the most socially or environmentally responsible companies:

  • 7% of Americans named Wal-Mart
  • 6% said Johnson & Johnson
  • 4% Procter & Gamble
  • 4% GE
  • 3% Whole Foods

Asked to name the least responsible companies:

  • 9% named Wal-Mart
  • 9% said Exxon Mobile
  • 3% GM  
  • 3% Ford
  • 2% Shell
  • 2% McDonald’s

41% of Americans could not name a single company that they consider the most socially and environmentally responsible. And:

  • 71% of consumers agree that they “avoid purchasing from companies whose practices they disagree with”
  • 55% tell others to shop products based on a company’s social and environmental practices
  • 48% tell others to drop products based on a company’s social and environmental practices

Mitch Baranowski, co-founder of BBMG, concludes that “At a time of… growing demand for accountability, … consumers are rewarding brands that align with their values… punishing those that don’t… and spreading the word with their family, friends and peers… “

For more information, and access to purchase report from BBMG, please visit here.

(Jami and I welcome you to do your due diligence and look into our business practices, speak to references… or call us directly and we’d be happy to talk to you about our commitment to “green” – that oft-abused word – in person.  Thanks!)

April 9, 2009 at 7:35 pm Leave a comment

Green Home is Sold!

Our sincerest thanks go out to the Northside Urban Redevelopment Corporation and their dedication to not only eradicating blighted housing in their backyard, but to doing it in the most environmentally responsible way.  The latest green project house, 4154 Mad Anthony, had a spectacular grand opening last night with about 100 visitors in attendence.  To top it all off, we have buyers for  the home!  It will be “pending” on the MLS as of today.  Congratulations to the new buyers and all who worked so hard to make this happen.  Viva Northside!

Hey – the house made it on the news as well!  Check out the link:

Green Housing Boom in Northside

CNCURC's Latest Green Success!

CNCURC's Latest Green Success!

March 20, 2009 at 2:31 pm 3 comments

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Who Are We?

Libby Hunter and Jami Stutzman are local Cincinnati Realtors and members of the U.S. Green Building Council who have a passion for sustainable living. Environmental responsibility lies at the core of our business practice - let us show you how we can help with ecologically-minded real estate needs. Please browse our blog, visit our local green vendors' websites and if you are in the market to buy or sell a home, let us show you how green features can make all the difference in your experience!

Contact Us

Jami Stutzman: 513-515-0689
Libby Hunter: 513-260-9632

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