ASK Realty's Broker, Sharon Hawthorne, is an EcoGreen Real Estate Agent & a Build It Green Advanced Certified Green Building Professional.
Certified EcoGreen Real Estate Agent requires completion of a California Department of Real Estate approved six session course on energy conservation and resource sustainability in the context of the built environment. Topics include energy efficiency, water conservation, green building and remodeling materials and practices, indoor air quality and an introduction to Whole House Performance analysis. Certification also requires documentation of participation in community events and educational activities outside the classroom and a demonstration of the ability to conduct an onsite assessment of a typical contemporary home's intrinsically green characteristics, shortcomings, and retrofit potential.
After completing this course I soon realized I needed to know more, when past clients began coming to me for decision-making assistance around how best to spend their upgrade dollars and began asking for referrals to green building professionals. So in 2008, shortly after becoming a Certified EcoGreen Agent, I also joined Build It Green.
Build It Green (BIG) is dedicated to the promotion of healthy and resource efficient building practices throughout California. Their initial focus was on working with local government and housing industry stakeholders to accelerate the adoption of green building practices and to develop pragmatic solutions to environmental challenges. They developed a Green Pointing Rating system, now incorporated as code by many municipalities, and were instrumental participants in the development of California Green Building Standards Code 2010 (CALGreen) which became effective January 1, 2011.
BIG's monthly guild meetings educated me on topics from legislative funding policies to specific construction techniques that might be used to qualify for a PassiveHaus certification, options for solar hot water, greywater use in existing homes and designs for greywater reuse in multifamily dwellings of the future. Attending these monthly meetings had the added benefit of helping me to get to know a broad cross section of designers, contractors, policy makers, installers, suppliers and other building industry specialists whom I can now call on for the benefit of my clients.
Given my 'do it yourselfer' remodeling background and a fascination with construction design and techniques, I soon felt the desire to learn even more. So in 2009 I completed Build It Green's training as a Certified Green Build Professional and in 2010 became an Advanced Certified Green Building Professional.
Certified Green Building Professional training was developed to aid homeowners and those purchasing homes who seek contractors, architects, engineers, specialty contractors, and real estate professionals who understand green building practices and can knowledgeably assist a consumer looking for green building services. The advanced certification is designed to educate and support building contractors who are interested in expanding into doing energy retrofit remodels and whole house performance upgrades or as a first step in becoming Certified Green Point Raters.
What does all this mean to you? As an EcoGreen Agent trained as an Advanced Green Building Professional I am uniquely qualified to assist Sonoma County home buyers and sellers who are interested in energy and resource conservation and reducing pollution. I understand the intrinsic economic value of a well-designed space using durable resource conserving materials and the role played by construction products and methods in determining indoor air quality, energy efficiency, and building occupants' general well-being.
I can intelligently assist buyers to recognize and compare the design and structural components of one home to another and can offer an educated opinion on the merit of green upgrade projects that have already been done or are being considered.
For a seller who has invested in energy efficient products or green building materials and techniques I have the knowledge and credibility to effectively market that home without simply resorting to a price per square foot valuation (which often has little relevance to value). I can intelligently respond to queries from both buyers and their agents concerning the merits of a home's energy efficiency and green design features.
I've kept informed on new technologies, product research, and funding sources in a variety of ways: from spending the day at a West Coast Green Conference to taking six all day and three half day classes offered through PG&E on subjects ranging from retrofitting crawl spaces to incentives offered by the government and/or PG&E for implementing green building practices and purchasing energy efficient appliances.
I also attended several of the Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy's Sustainable Enterprise Conferences and Smart Growth Symposiums and presentations by the Sonoma County Climate Protection Campaign related to funding energy upgrades and retrofit projects and participated in workshops and brainstorming sessions sponsored by the Sonoma County Energy Independence Program (SCEIP).
Most importantly I serve my clients as a Green Building Resource. I love learning about all things green related to construction methods and site planning and am also a great believer in the value of vintage building preservation, so issues related to green retrofits are just naturally of interest to me.
I enjoy sharing what I learn. Wondering about the return on investment of a green retrofit? Wondering about the pros and cons of various insulation products? Finding that the deeper you dig the more variables you discover? Whether you'd just like to toss around an idea, or if you're looking for the answer to a very specific question, I welcome your call. If I can't help you, hopefully I can direct you to someone who can. Just ASK.
Toll free 877-823-8329
Monday - Saturday 10:30am - 6:30pm
Sundays - 2:30pm - 5:30pm
Department of Real Estate License # 01169237