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Green Homes Tour gives San Diegans a look at efficient options

14 homes available for tours
US construction spending tumbled in April
Posted at 7:42 AM, Oct 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-18 10:42:35-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A tour this weekend will give San Diegans a chance to see all of the options they have to make their homes more energy-efficient and climate-friendly.

The San Diego Green Homes Tour features 14 houses, all with unique ways to go green.

"We have a variety of homes from luxury and do it yourself tactics that everyday people can employ," says tour Co-Chair Katie Teare. "We're hoping people that attend the tour can learn and be inspired to put some of these techniques into their own home."

Among the options, a home that is entirely off-the-grid and run by solar power, a home built from straw bales, a home that turned the backyard pool into a pond, and several homes that are LEED-certified as among the most energy-efficient.

RELATED: Photos of energy efficient homes in San Diego (Slide Show)

"If you're going to be building a new house it just seems like the right thing to do," says Kristin Brinner, whose newly built Solana Beach home is part of the tour. "We have a daughter, and we're really concerned about climate change and the world she's coming into, so we want to do everything we can to minimize our impacts."

Brinner's home features solar power, a grey-water system, and a driveway that percolates water and pushes it to their yard instead of into storm drains.

She and her husband took the tour three years ago to get inspiration as they started to design their new home.

"It might cost a little more to buy a nicer system, but if you look at the cost over time, since they're so efficient, you get back a return on the money," says Brinners husband, Chris Novak.

Bill Powers agrees. He set up his home with a fully self-contained solar power system in 2014. He says it's time that these kinds of renovations become the standard, not the exception.

"This isn't fringe stuff. This is something you can do if you'd like to do and give you the flexibility to protect your own home when the grid's not available," says Powers.

The tour is on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets to tour the homes are $30 for both days or $20 for one day. The tour is self-guided, to allow people to spend as much, or as little time in each home as possible.

For more information, or to buy tickets, go do