May 12, 2014 – Los Angeles CA – Fred Van Allen of First Team Real Estate in Los Angeles is one of America’s few recognized experts in both Green and Vintage real estate. He has two certificates from the California Association of Realtors CG Rep, National Association of Realtors, GREEN and has spoken extensively on the subject of Green homes.
In this article, Mr. Van Allen shares some insights into converting vintage homes to qualify for “green” status. When asked what criteria a property must meet to be certified “Green”, Van Allen responded, “First of all, the home can have Green elements or be whole house Green. Not all energy efficient homes are Green homes. An audit is done by a third party rater, a licensed contractor that is certified to do a three part green audit.” He continues, “The survey is a points rating system, with a minimum number of points needed to achieve an ‘Element-home with green features’ or ‘Green whole house certification’. What is measured is energy efficiency, indoor air quality, water conservation, resource conversant and community designs.”
Many readers have heard of Green homes and considering the effort involved in converting a home to certified Green, one would think that there must be some significant benefits behind owning a Green home. Mr. Van Allen addressed this topic, “There are practical benefits, social and environmental benefits and community/tribal benefits of belonging. These vary and are gained from quality of life, health, comfort, higher resale value, lower utility bills, less maintenance, Green loans for purchase or remodel.” Van Allen is quick to add, “Rebates and utility credits may also be available. In California SCE has actively sought out real estate agents to spread the word on the benefits short term and long term on green home ownership. There are federal and state goals in the Green space also.”
Fred Van Allen’s expertise does not end with being a certified Green Realtor. He is also one of California’s preeminent experts on vintage real estate and specialises in luxury sales. For anyone not sure of what may constitute a “vintage” home, Van Allen offers this explanation, “There are no set guidelines, but in my experience, having been built in the 1950’s or earlier would qualify a home a vintage.” He also adds, “Some properties that I would call vintage have individual historic designations or they may lie in a historic district.”
One would assume that there would be specific challenges that are unique to vintage homes when attempting to make them Green. Van Allen addresses this topic quite candidly, “The same as for newer homes-expense, lack of knowledge, perception that it’s too complex or expensive.” He then goes on to elaborate, “Histrionically designated homes or homes within historic district can be green. OHJ had a story Old is the new Green. In it they suggest that there has been an attitude shift to sustainability and energy efficiency, especially within the ‘millennials’ sector of the population.”
Van Allen wraps up this subject with some good advice for both consumers and fellow real estate professionals, “Certified GREEN real estate professionals have the responsibility of educating consumers by helping them identify the right products while also avoiding any “green washing and green fatigue”. For homeowners and consumers thinking of converting a vintage home he adds, “Call a certified Green agent. The insight and expertise they’re able to provide nearly always pays for itself in saved costs and a significantly reduced learning curve.”
To learn more about Fred Van Allen, Realtor please visit First Team Estates or call his team at (909) 261-9711.