Just a short post to let you know that all the services and building products I use that work out for me and don’t impact on my health will be reviewed on this blog. So far, I’ve had some positive experiences with tradespeople and businesses that I’m so grateful for that I feel it’s only right to pass their names and details on. There’s my wonderful, thoughtful and patient draftsperson (aka Eco Designer), Quin Wyatt, whom you can read more about here. And many more positive experiences (and a few not so positive that I’m willing to share, too) that will feature here. When you come back in the future just click on the Freedom: an Allergy-Free, Eco-Friendly House link right here under the Building tab! All my posts to do with housing will be organised there for you. (Some are organised under Renovating for People with Chemical Sensitivities for your convenience, also.)
Of course not every product that is fine for me to use will be okay for others too. Of course, this is due to the varying nature of our sensitivities. For instance, mould is a mahoosive issue for me. (It’s taken 10 years of toiling with chemical avoidance, under the weight of my illness to work this out, because small amounts can’t be detected, which makes them invisible unless spores are en masse; and, it was not until I lived in a house that was mouldy that I realised that it was such a problem (then came the medical testing as further confirmation). If you get sick when it rains, you may want to look into this also.)) So, even though I have solvents, petrochemicals and fragrances to avoid when choosing products for building a house, I now realise that if I don’t do my best to avoid mould exposure, all those other chemicals impact on my health far worse. But for someone else it may be plastics or even all chemical based products that must be avoided, yes? Please be mindful of that when researching and choosing your own products! Your health needs are precious and need to be taken seriously.
Our house is being created with moisture control, elimination and prevention of condensation in mind. And it’s airtight, with good control of cross ventilation so we can air it regularly.
There’s a saying in Eco House Creation: Wrap em’ tight; ventilate right!
Nowhere is this more important than with creating housing for chemically sensitive people. The reason Eco Houses are wrapped tight is for energy efficiency. But for people like us, especially parts of our community who live housebound, being able to ventilate properly can be a massive issue. But even more problematic is what happens when we don’t open our houses to air them on a regular basis: condensation and mould growth are evil and can sneak up on your health, taking it on a ride into hell. Also take into account the materials and chemicals used in building and renovations; and coupled with a tight building, what you have created is the perfect environment for Sick Building Syndrome. It’s a thing. And it’s real. And it can be a pain in the arse, sinus and brain!
(I know! It’s a conundrum because of outside air polluted by cars, trucks, woodsmoke (from chimneys), fragranced-based washing powders and fabric softeners.)
This is where the right tradespeople are key in making a home safe for people with asthma, chemical sensitivity, and/or immune disfunction. Greenwashed products are great if they are really green but it’s not just about saving our environment; it’s about the people and animals who live in the homes, too. (Amelia Hill has written extensibly on this issue here.) However, if you can find the right tradespeople who listen and take on board your needs, and most importantly, what you don’t need, then you are on your way to a low VOC, chemical-free, mould-free utopia!
Stay tuned for more…
PS: if you know of any suitable tradespeople, businesses or products, drop a comment down below. This blog is read all over the world, and people will find this page or any of the others tagged with Build an Allergy-free, Eco-friendly Home via internet search engines. (And you never know, next time I’m stuck in bed with no creative writing flow, I just may make another one of my Listly Lists including your valuable input!)
(And thanks for reading, I tried to keep this short.)
Sharing is Caring…
The Steps to Building an Eco-Friendly, Allergy-Free house
The Steps to Building an Eco-Friendly, Allergy-Free house and the tradespeople and companies we used (So far we have been really lucky with the team of people who we’ve found to help us build a low-toxic house.):
Design your house. We used Quin Wyatt, eco-Designer: 0418 589 461
Find your workers (yes I have a post: How to Find or Organise Fragrance Free Workers [post coming up])
Building Biologist: Lucinda Curran at Eco Health Solutions: 0488 377 466
How to Test Building Products and Products for you own or someone else’s Suitability [post coming up]
How to Sort out Protection Based on Duty of Care with your Local Council [post coming up]
A fully, well-cured Concrete Slab, solid as a Rock from D&C Fear Concreting: 04 0369 3794
Low-toxic Pluming installed by a fragrance-free plumbing team: KLM Plumbing
Choosing Fittings for the bathroom, kitchen and laundry: @Reece Plumbing: 03 5253 3000
Choose your internal Building structure: We went with Hardwood from Calco [Post coming up]
Build a frame: we went with Damien and his team from Pristine Carpentry [Post coming up]
Choose a roof style, find a roofer [post coming up] , which are often, but not always a plumbing and roofing job (because plumbers and roofers often do both); We have the maddest Japanese style roof, which we are over the moon about, installed by Blessed Roofing, designed by Quin Wyatt, eco-draftsperson.
Hydronic Heating by Hydrotherm [post coming up]