Think Green To Save Green

EWM Realty International

You’ve got to think green in order to save some green.

EWM Realty International’s Carlos Ruiz de Quevedo is serving as both Realtor and developer for two new, certified green speculative homes in Little Gables. These green spec homes will be the first of their kind in Miami-Dade County.

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A typical U.S. home uses approximately nine kilowatts per square foot of power per year, Ruiz de Quevedo told Miami Today News. But one of these green homes will only use about three kilowatts per square foot of power a year.

If these were conventional homes, the monthly electric bill would range from $250 to $300. As is stands now, these green homes will have an electric bill of $30 to $50 per month.

According to Ruiz de Quevedo, if the owners also decide to install solar panels, the home could actually be energy neutral and the owners might get a check back from Florida Power & Light at the end of the year.

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For years Ruiz de Quevedo has asked builders and developers for green inventory.

“Nobody’s been doing it, so I figured I would do it myself,” he told Miami Today News.

Ruiz de Quevedo, in addition to being a longtime real estate associate with EWM, established Sustainable Realty Group in 2009—an eco-focused subset of EWM. He also served as the chairman of the City of Coral Gables’ Green Task Force.

“My focus on this project is to get people to look at alternatives,” he said.

Some of the alternatives to be included in the Little Gables homes are reinforced insulated concrete walls to keep heat out and offer hurricane protection, sustainable bamboo flooring, impact windows with tinted glass to reduce reflective heat, gutters for rain harvesting, and “smart” thermostats that adapt to the schedules of residents−among other features.

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“My hope is that this will become the standard in South Florida and that buyers will begin to look beyond granite countertops and concern themselves with homes’ operations,” Ruiz de Quevedo said.

“Through this project, our goals are to make consumers aware that green homes are a better investment because they cost less to manage, and to change the mindset that they are exceedingly expensive to buy or must be custom-built.”

The three-bedroom, 2,000 square foot Little Gables homes will be sold in the upper $500,000 range. Ruiz de Quevedo hopes to start marketing the homes on April 22−Earth Day.

“Carlos has been a tremendous pioneer in the growth and development of energy-efficient building techniques and technologies in South Florida,” EWM Realty International president Ron Shuffield said.

“We applaud him on the success of this latest initiative, which will undoubtedly pave the path toward future development of green homes.”

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