Linda Muscalino is happy to open her newly constructed house in La Grange to visitors this weekend.

Muscalino’s house at 1114 S. Stone Ave., is one of the houses being highlighted on a tour sponsored by the U.S. Green Building Council-Illinois Chapter.

All of the homes have been verified as using practices that are environmentally friendly and which save energy.

“It ensures they meet a specific standard and that’s how they get selected for the tour,” said Liz Kuehn, program coordinator for the green building council.

She said people taking the tour will get tips and ideas for how they can make their own homes more healthy and sustainable.

“We do the tour to educate and bring awareness around the benefits of sustainable and healthy homes,” Kuehn said.

Muscalino, and her husband, Tony, recently moved from Hickory Hills to be nearer to their daughter and granddaughter. They’d lived in their previous home 28 years and knew they wanted one that was better for the earth.

“I loved our old home but it wasn’t energy efficient and that really bothered me,” Linda Muscalino said.

Their new house features cellulose insulation in the attic and walls, solar panels on the roof, triple pane windows, a tankless water heater and dual flush toilets.

Rick Thompson, managing partner of BrightLeaf Homes, which built the house, said one tip he’d suggest to anyone seeking to make their home more energy efficient is to improve their attic.

“The biggest bang for the buck is if they air seal the attic,” he said.

There are also houses on the tour in Downers Grove, Evanston, Hampshire and in several different neighborhoods in Chicago. Each of the houses will have an ambassador on site to explain the home’s features.

Now in its fifth year, the GreenBuilt Home Tour helps raise public awareness about healthy and sustainable home-building practices in real-world applications.

The homes are open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. For more about the tour, including a list of addresses, go to www.greenbuilthometour.org. Click here to view the full article.