If you are a homeowner thinking of undertaking renovation, you are probably focused on the end result. You may spend most of your time thinking about paint colors and finishes to transform your space, whether it’s a single room or a whole-house renovation.
There is something you have to do first. You have to go through the process of removing existing fixtures and other materials. In the past, you would undertake a demolition project. Demolitions completely destroy interior materials, fixtures, and even furnishings. From there, the materials are disposed at landfills. Each year, 40% of the 251 million tons of solid waste added to landfills comes from construction projects. This represents a significant strain on the environment as well as a great deal of wasted potential.
The deconstruction process is an alternative to demolition that offers a number of benefits for homeowners. It involves the careful disassembly of building materials, fixtures, and furnishings in order to preserve them for reuse or recycling. From environmental to financial to charitable benefits, you’re sure to embrace one of these great reasons to ask for deconstruction when planning your next home renovation project.
- Environmental Benefits: You know that deconstruction can keep materials out of the landfill, but what does that really mean? That means no chemical runoff from decomposing materials ends up in the groundwater. It means less air pollution from the transport and burning of construction materials, paint, and more. In addition, when materials are reused and recycled, it helps the environment. Fewer new materials are manufactured, warehoused, and shipped, creating additional environmental benefits.
- Community Benefits: Many deconstruction contractors have extensive contacts within the community. This network creates a local market for deconstructed building materials and furnishings. Thus low-income homeowners and buildings that would otherwise be in disrepair are able to afford discounted materials for repair and refurbishment. Local schools benefit from discarded furnishings and electronics salvaged through deconstruction. Deconstruction in remote communities can provide materials that would otherwise be unobtainable.
- Charitable Benefits: You already know that deconstruction can be beneficial on a small scale for local communities, but many charities have found that deconstruction has large-scale impact as well. Habitat for Humanity facilitates deconstruction through large-scale salvage projects and re-distribution through their nationwide ReStore chain of discounted home improvement stores. In addition, many other charitable organizations specialize in the distribution of deconstructed materials, furnishings, and electronics. Some of these organizations operate on the local level. Meanwhile, other organizations maintain nationwide databases that help to match deconstructed materials with grateful recipients and purchasers all over the country.
- Emotional Benefits: Although renovations are exciting, there is also an emotional component to the loss of familiar surroundings. For many people, there is an altruistic interest at play. They get emotional satisfaction knowing that their family’s furnishings and fixtures will be put to good use. In addition, the social impact of deconstruction often leads to ties within the community that create goodwill and positive outcomes.
- Financial Benefits: Perhaps the most exciting benefit for many people is the financial impact of deconstruction. Deconstruction appraisers like Green Donation Consultants can create a valuation for the deconstructed and donated materials. This can mean a major tax deduction for the homeowner making the donation. Coupled with the increased equity often realized through a home renovation, deconstruction could be the beginning of a significant financial benefit, both at tax time and upon the resale of the home. Deconstruction turns a formerly empty expenditure–the demolition process–into a win-win benefit for the homeowner and the recipients.
If you’re interested in deconstruction for your upcoming home renovation, let us know! We have the expertise and the network of affiliates to help you take advantage of each of these benefits. Our no-obligation appraisal is the first step in putting this process to work for you on your next project.