Category Archives: Residential Rainwater Collection

Seattle Home Saves Money on Water Bills

Four giant cisterns under the front porch collect and store up to 10,000 gallons of rainwater, used as the home’s primary water source. “Water gets purified by a series of filters and UV treatment and is used throughout the house,” says homeowner Andri Kofmehl. “When the tanks run low, the house can be supplied with utility water.” (Steve Ringman/The Seattle Times)

According to an article in The Seattle Times, a West Seattle family “live in Seattle’s second Built Green Emerald Star home, a supremely certified, super-sustainable showcase of so many features…”

The home, constructed by net-zero specialists TC Legend Homes, was built to the organization’s highest standard by TC Legend Homes and was featured on the 2018 Northwest Green Home Tour this past April.

With a design from RainBank Rainwater Systems, the home also features on-site cisterns that can hold 10,000 gallons of rainwater. According to Built Green program manager Leah Missik, “with a net-zero home plus a 70 percent reduction in water use, you can factor in you’re probably going to get money back from Seattle City Light for electricity, and you will save significantly on your water and sewage bills, and the upfront costs are mitigated.”

Homeowner Veena Prasad says “There’s a sense that going green sounds great, but people feel it’s too expensive or too much work. We need that extra push; sometimes that inspiration helps. When people see someone like us can do this — you don’t have to be a rich, retired executive; it’s something the middle class can aspire to. If we can do our bit to help inspire, we’re happy to do that.”

As we mentioned in our recent blog post titled Net-Zero Home Wins With RainBank Design, sustainable homes don’t necessarily have to cost more, plus can give you a higher return on your investment.

Net-Zero Home Wins With RainBank Design

Photo credit: greenbuildermedia.com

If you think you can’t afford to build a sustainable, net-zero home in greater Seattle, we encourage you to read on.

“I still talk to people who don’t even know it’s possible to build a net-zero home for the same price as a conventional home,” says Ted Clifton, designer, builder and owner at TC Legend. Clifton is quoted in an article, posted by Juliet Grable in Green Builder Media, announcing that his company constructed the home that is a recipient of the 10th Annual Green Home of the Year Award.

RainBank is excited to be part of this project, which used RainBank’s rainwater collection system design consisting of four 2,500-gallon cisterns located below the first-floor deck, for a total storage capacity of 10,000 gallons. The system supplies all of the water used in the three-story home, including irrigation.

According to the TC Legend website, “When a net-zero-energy home can be built at a cost on par with traditional construction, everyone wins. TC Legend Homes is helping to usher in a new era of green construction in which homeowners don’t have to choose between cutting-edge efficiency and staying on budget. Our customers expect to save money owning their home, not spend more.”

RainBank Rainwater Systems is the leading, go-to company for green building architects and construction firms that seek modern rainwater collection systems, designs and builds.

Good News for Skagit County Property Owners

Click to enlarge map
Skagit River Basin Instream Flow Rule Area. Click to see enlarged map.

Good news for some Skagit County property owners affected by Washington’s Department Of Ecology 2001 In Stream Flow Rules. According to an article in the Skagit Valley Herald, Ecology’s Kristin Johnson-Wagner says, “The county now has the authority to allow wells as a legal source of water for the purpose of issuing building permits.”

The 56 square mile area within the basin extends from Bayview South to La Conner and as far as Sedro-Woolley. Other areas outside the designated area are still subject to the 2001 ruling with hopes that more areas will be relaxed as well.

According to the state’s website, there is an interactive map tool (iMAP) which will help you learn if your property is affected by the Skagit River Instream Flow Rule . Under “Map Categories”, choose “Planning and Development” and then choose “Skagit Instream Rule Area”.  The area affected by the Instream Flow rule will be shown.