Disrupting the system and paving a path forward for others to follow is not always easy. A group of companies focused on sustainable building faced the challenge of creating a tiny home design that would be affordable and would still qualify to receive LEED certification.

Their challenges become the industry's reward.

Eco Relics, Norsk Tiny Houses, and the Northeast Florida Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council are partnering to build the country’s first LEED-certified tiny house. Through this project, the groups aim to educate others about how to reduce their carbon footprint.

About 75 percent of the house will be built with salvaged and reclaimed building materials from the Eco Relics warehouse, and A1A solar will install a solar energy unit on the home. Once the house is finished, it will be donated to someone in need.

Sarah Boren, the director of policy and programs at USGBC Florida, says she predicts that construction on the house will begin in the third or fourth week of August and finish up by October 2. The process of building the home will be transparent so that others can contribute ideas and learn about the process behind building a green tiny house. The entire project will be documented through a 24/7 webcam, pictures, video, blog posts, and various social media platforms.

After the house is finished, the house will be shown at the 2017 Florida Tiny House Festival in St. Augustine, Florida, before embarking on a yearlong educational tour throughout Florida. The tour will finish up at the Greenbuild conference in Chicago in late 2018.

“We’re just trying to educate as we go and build a very cool tiny house that will go to someone in need,” Boren says.

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