In recent years, the paradigm has shifted and ‘going green’ is no longer just a trendy tag line; it has become the standard when building in Cayman.
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Increasingly, focus is shifting to eco-friendly property design by way of solar panels, geothermal cooling systems, low-flow plumbing, high-efficiency appliances and LED lighting with reduced energy bills as renewable energy equipment, such as solar panels, is duty-free for residential homeowners. Also, the ministry of sustainability has put forward a request for the cabinet to consider duty waivers for certain energy-efficient devices and materials used for construction.
GreenTech Energy has partnered with Cayman National Bank (CNB) in a new scheme that offers financing for rooftop solar installations as part of a new initiative to provide access to solar power for all. Customers will be able to get a 100% loan to fund up to a 10-kilowatt solar system costing around CI$25,000. CNB is offering loans over 20 years with interest rates fixed at 4.5% for the first seven years.
Considerations When Building Green
If you are thinking about designing and building a green home, consider the following steps:
- Find a design-builder who has proven experience with green homes in Cayman
- Use key building products like Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) such as Fox Blocks which are manufactured locally, spray foam insulation, low VOCs materials and finishes, impact/insulated windows, Watersense rated plumbing and Energy Star rated appliances
- Own your own energy. With the growing demand for alternative energy sources, utilise solar energy in your home from companies like GreenTech Solar. Alternatively, try a geothermal cooling system. Companies like GeoCayman can help you cool your home much more efficiently than traditional air conditioning systems saving you substantial energy and money.
Geothermal Cooling Systems
Unlike common central air conditioning systems that distribute cool air into your home through heated gas and refrigerants, geothermal cooling systems are known to have lower operational costs and last up to 10 years longer than conventional A/C.Geothermal cooling systems work by removing heat from your home and/or workplace building, transferring it to the water pipe systems buried beneath your house or in your yard. The result of this is a cooling ‘air conditioning’ type effect that removes heat from the circulated air, transfers that heat back to your water systems in the ground and then returns the newly cooled air back into your home.
If you are looking to save on cooling costs by swapping to an energy-efficient system with a longer lifespan, GeoCayman can help:
Building Green Consultants
The following organisations can help you if you are looking to build a greener home in Cayman.
Please also refer to the Advice on Building a Home page for more information.
Design (Cayman) ArchitectsICIA Member
Design Cayman is a full service Architectural Design Studio in the Cayman Islands, with a strong focus on sustainable architecture.