One of our clients in Los Altos for whom we designed a major residential remodel made the wise choice to deconstruct the existing home instead of simply demolishing it. The wood framing, bricks, fixtures, etc. can be reused and not just recycled. While deconstruction costs a little more than standard demolition upfront as the labor to carefully remove and sort materials takes more time, it can result in substantial tax donation credits to the owner, in this case, in the order of $60,000!
Granted the materials will need to be recycled per the laws of the local municipality, but it seems so sad to see all that wonderful framing lumber shredded, when it could have been reused by artisans creating handmade furniture or people building new homes for the needy. Was the price difference really analyzed, or was this route chosen just because it is the “normal” and expedient way to take down a house? We don’t know, but we encourage you to take the extra step to give John Morrow of the ReUse People a call to see if you too can’t actually save money as well as reduce energy consumption through reuse by selecting deconstruction instead of demolition.
The clever owners of this project, Eric and Angela Brown, created a time lapse video of deconstruction in action by Rebuild Green of Palo Alto…
Now the real work of construction can start cleanly on their new home!