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Eventbrite - 2015 Northwest Green Home Tour

Now a Two-Day Event!

Saturday, April 25, 11am - 5pm: South Seattle Area, Central Seattle & Eastside | See All Sat Sites
Sunday, April 26, 11am - 5pm: North Seattle Area | See All Sun Sites

Start at Any Home on the Tour

Download the Official Tour Guide for the 2015 NW Green Home Tour

Download the Official Tour Guide for the 2015 NW Green Home Tour

The tour takes place over two days, Saturday, April 25, and Sunday, April 26. Homes and Sustainability Stops in the South Seattle area, Central Seattle, and the Eastside are open from 11am to 5pm on Saturday only. Homes and Sustainability Stops in the North Seattle area are open on Sunday only. You are welcome to browse the tour map and preview all of the homes online. The tour is self-guided, and you can start and end at any of the homes or businesses. Visit as many sites as you like!


The Northwest Green Home Tour is a free annual public event, produced by the Northwest EcoBuilding Guild, that showcases local, sustainable and green new homes, remodels, and energy retrofits in the greater Seattle area. Join our mailing list to receive updates.

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News and Updates

PSCCU Helps Fund "Energy Smart" Renovations

Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union has been a dedicated supporter of the tour since our humble beginnings, and we are proud to call them a Supporting Sponsor again in 2015. While this nonprofit offers a wide range of products and services (many of them free of charge to their members), we are particularly excited about how their Energy Smart Loans help members make home improvements that align with their environmental values.  

At PSCCU, members are not only part owners of a financial cooperative, but they also play a role in environmental sustainability, financial security for others, and job creation. The credit union offers all the financial products and management tools of other financial institutions, but they diversify themselves by combining helping the environment with providing their members with the best money-saving options.

One of the major ways they accomplish this is through their Energy Smart (Home Efficiency) Loans. They have helped numerous homeowners around the Puget Sound area and beyond update their homes to be energy-efficient, as well as businesses that supply the designs, material and labor to grow and prosper.

PSCCU member Corey Fitch writes, 

PSCCU is a great partner as they help us obtain our social conscience goals. The financing piece is one of the most important aspects of the programs we work in. Many people want to be “green,” but the amount to do so isn’t always obtainable. The rates and terms of a PSCCU Energy Efficiency loan make the monthly payments more manageable and more in line with the savings someone can achieve. The more fulfilling jobs are the ones where the families find the programs we work in and they find there are opportunities to do upgrades to their home thanks to the loan programs PSCCU offers.

Corey Fitch runs the Seattle sector of Energy Efficiency for Neil Kelly Company and has personally experienced the benefits of an energy efficient loan from PSCCU.

10 Steps to Greening Your Office or Home

We really appreciate Green Cleaning Seattle’s generous support of the tour. Winners of the 2014 Western Washington Business of the Year Award, Green Cleaning Seattle started with a small budget but a clear vision. Their commitment to sustainability goes beyond the green service they provide. We admire how much they’ve done to create a healthy, eco-friendly, and community-oriented workspace.

We asked them what it took to convert a 1914 craftsman home into an uber-green office space that is truly an inspiration to their neighbors and wider community. They shared these ten steps they’ve taken that are all guided by one principle: “Work with what you’ve got.”

Step 1 - Go Solar!: One of the first things they did was to install a 2.16 kW solar energy system on the south-facing side of their office. The panels produce enough power to cover their office energy needs when averaged over the course of a year.

Step 2 - Purchase Green, Energy-efficient Appliances: GCS chose a hybrid water heater and Energy Star washers and dryers. As a green company they reuse their towels so they do a lot of laundry.

Step 3 - Create a Permaculture Site Map: Either hire a landscaper with Permaculture design training or take a Permaculture design course yourself. It will change the way you think about function, design, and plants. GCS did both.

 Step 4 - Pick Perennial, Edible, Soil-Healing Plants: Plants can be both beautiful and useful. The plants they chose for their office grounds fix nitrogen in the soil, dynamically accumulate nutrients, attract pollinators, and help with noise and pollution reduction. GCS can eat most of what grows on their land.

Step 5 - Tell your Cement Driveway Bye Bye: GCS replaced the old cement driveway with permeable pavers to reduce runoff into storm drains.

Step 6 - Throw a Parking Strip Replanting Party: Green Cleaning Seattle planted their right-of-way parking strip with a variety of drought-tolerant, pollinator-attracting plants. Planting your parking strip can be a fun, civic-minded, community-building summer project.

Step 7 - Install Rainwater Catchment: GCS installed a 1,320-gallon cistern to catch rain off their roof. The water is used for watering their plants.

Step 8 - Build a Rain Garden: They made a rain garden in their back yard. A rain garden is a landscaped, shallow depression with specific soil mixes and plants that help to collect, absorb, and filter storm water runoff. A rain garden temporarily and intentionally ponds after it rains. Due to the Northwest’s rainfall pattern, many places in our city have to deal with storm water overflow problems. Rain gardens can be part of the solution.

Step 9 - Boldly Implement a Laundry-to-Landscape System: Green Cleaning Seattle is the first business in Seattle to have a gray water system. When they do towel laundry, the water is used to water plants and edible berry bushes on the north side of the office.

Step 10 - Welcome the Chickens!: GCS is a fun place to work. Their office has pet chickens that arrived this year. The coop is in the backyard. GCS staff are looking forward to eating fresh omelets soon.

Get Your Tickets & Be Registered to Win a Chauffeured Tour in a Tesla

Tickets for the 2015 Northwest Green Home Tour just became available. If you haven't already, reserve your spot today. Tickets are free, but there's a new option this year thanks to a new partnership with Tesla Motors. If you make a donation of any amount when you go to reserve your ticket, you and up to three friends will be entered to win a two-hour chauffeured tour of the homes in a Tesla Model S. Two lucky groups will win. All donations go to support the nonprofit Northwest EcoBuilding Guild, which helps promote sustainable building practices in our region.

Get Your Tickets Now

If you’re considering putting a home on the tour, this is your last chance. With 30+ sites already registered, the 2015 NW Green Home Tour is already the biggest yet, and we expect it to get even bigger by the end of this week. Won't you join us in helping spread the word about what's now possible in the world of sustainable building.

Look for news and updates about the tour in the coming weeks:

  • Center pullout section in the Seattle Weekly
  • Special section in Natural Awakenings Magazine
  • Radio ads
  • Paid social media promotion
  • Online ads at the Stranger
  • Professional postering campaign
  • $3,500 Google AdWords campaign
  • Partnership with Tesla to chauffeur two lucky winners and their friends around the tour sites
  • Much more 

As a site host, you'll get wide-ranging exposure, from social media shout outs to dedicated tour web pages, and much more.

Register Your Site Today!

Now is also a great time to sign up to volunteer or sponsor the tour.

Become a Tour Volunteer

The Northwest Green Home tour is made possible by the generous help of many dedicated individuals. If you're passionate about green building and would like to connect with others who share your interests, please join our merry band of fun-loving Green Home Tour volunteers as a site greeter. 

We just opened up volunteer registration. Reserve your spot at your favorite site now, before someone else does. Volunteer shifts are available Saturday, April 25, and Sunday, April 26. Sign up for as many shifts as you'd like.

Sign Up to Be a Volunteer Site Greeter

Want to help with pre-tour planning? Please contact us. Here are just a few of the ways you can get involved:

  • Join the Green Home Tour Planning Committee
  • Utilize a professional skill, such as PR, social media, photography, sales, event planning, project management, or graphic design
  • Become a Green Home Tour intern and learn all about the ins and outs of green event planning
Take a Sneak Peek at Our 2015 Sites!

Site host registration has gotten off to a great start for the 2015 tour, and we want to take this opportunity to show our appreciation to the 19 builders, architects, and homeowners who have already committed to putting their most exciting projects on the tour. Thanks to the overwhelming support of the area's green building community, this year's Northwest Green Home Tour is shaping up to be better than ever!

The tour will include projects from the following site hosts and many more . . .

  • Greenfab
  • CRD Design Build
  • David Kendall
  • YS Built
  • Art & Architecture
  • Kohl Construction
  • Hammer & Hand
  • Jack Herndon
  • Puget Sound Solar
  • Haven Illustrated
  • LimeLite Development

If you have an outstanding sustainably built residential project, there's still time to submit your application for the 2015 tour. Our selection committee is looking for new homes, renovations, and multifamily projects in all "shades" of green. Fill out your application today. Our early bird registration period ends February 15, and registration closes March 15. Download the information packet.

2015 Tour Dates Announced: April 25-26

Mark your calendar! The 2015 Northwest Green Home Tour will be taking place Saturday, April 25, and Sunday, April 26. By popular request, the tour will be expanding to two days this year so that you can see more homes all around the region.

It's not too early to get involved . . .

If you'd like to get occasional updates about the tour, please sign up for notifications.

If you're a builder, architect, or homeowner and would like to have your site considered for the tour, please complete this quick online application.

If you have skills you'd like to share, or are available to help out on the day of the tour, please drop us a line.

A limited number of sponsorship opportunities are available. Please contact Jenny Heins for more information.

Planning Is Underway for the 2015 Tour

The 2015 Northwest Green Home Tour is a go! We're gearing up once again to bring you the most exciting innovations in sustainable building in the region. We haven't finalized the date yet, but the tour will take place again around Earth Day in April.

If you'd like to be notified when we set the official date, please sign up for notifications.

If you're a builder, architect, or homeowner and would like to have your site considered for the tour, please send us an email at

If you have skills you'd like to share, or are available to help out on the day of the tour, please drop us a line.

A limited number of sponsorship opportunities are available. Please contact Jenny Heins for more information.

*Photo: Artisans Group, Island Passive House, featured on the 2014 tour.

Announcing the Winners of the 2014 NW Green Home Tour Site Awards

We had a great post-tour wrap-up party at Hale's Palladium last week, where we announced the winners of the first-annual NW Green Home Tour Site Awards. There were so many great sites this year, and the competition was fierce. Congrats to all of our winners!

Most Visited Site
Winner: Drinking Rainwater in Ballard, Bristow Enterprises, Kim Mulligan (233 visitors)
Runner Up: 106 Year Old Net Zero Craftsman, Puget Sound Solar (191 visitors)

Visitors' Favorite
Winner: Beach Drive, Neiman Taber Architects, Heartwood Builders
Runners Up: Home Reclaimed by Ninebark Design Build, Seward Park Deep Green Remodel by Opperman and Others, Drinking Rainwater in Ballard by Bristow Enterprises and Kim Mulligan, and Historic House Deep Green Remodel by Velocipede Architects and Sunshine Construction

Audience Choice Award
Winner: Lifestream Backyard Cottage by Lifestream Designs
Runner Up: Baker Cottage by Kate Wells-Driscoll


The 2014 Tour Was a Great Big Green Success

It's a wrap! The 2014 NW Green Home Tour took place last Saturday, April 26, and by all accounts, it was a big success. Our heartfelt and enthusiastic thanks to the 70+ volunteers, 35+ site hosts, 20+ sponsors, and homeowners for making it happen. Most of all, thanks to you and the 1,000+ other visitors who came out to learn about green building and enjoy the sunny weather.

If you took the tour, we'd love to hear your feedback. Please take a quick survey and vote for your favorite site. For the first time ever, we'll be giving awards to the most popular sites, so, if you toured a truly special home, please make sure it gets the recognition it deserves by casting your vote.

Be sure to check out our photo album, which is growing every day. If you took photos of your own, we'd love it if you could upload them to the album as well. Also, check our Facebook page for other photos and updates. And if you haven't already, please consider joining our mailing list so we can let you know when we have details about next year's tour.

From all of us involved, thank you again for your enthusiasm and curiosity about green building. Over the past four years, many visitors have reported that they've applied what they learned on the tour to their own homes and projects or passed along information to friends and neighbors. We hope you'll do the same. 

A few initial comments

"We can’t play back a movie of the entire day, but if we could it would be magical. Thank you, thank you, for your help in making it all happen, and continuing on from here!" –Dana West, King County RainWise Program

"We had an incredible turnout at the Burke-Gilman house yesterday. There were lots of good questions and a huge interest in anything green as well as custom design and architecture. . . . Hats off to a job well done!" –Dan Stettler, Stettler Design

Be sure to add your own voice . . . 

Take the Survey