In 1943, Winston Churchill famously said, “First we shape our buildings, then they shape us.” Back then, the shapers of houses were architects and builders. No one thought about the homeowner’s role in this or the impact of the house on the environment.
Things have changed dramatically since then.
We now know that how homeowners make decisions and what they decide can affect the household’s dynamic in the new or remodeled house. We know that house size and material selections affect the environment, both in the vicinity of the house and thousands of miles away in the places where building materials are sourced and manufactured. Household energy use contributes to the greenhouse gas emissions that are causing global warming and climate change.
But some things are the same. We still build the occasional extraordinary house that merits the spotlight; we still build houses one at a time, and selecting the person or firm to build or remodel your house is still the most important decision that you will make.