July 6th, 2017 by Darcy


Are you ready to start the process of selling your home? Staging is a way to declutter and make your home desirable for the maximum number of buyers in your price range. I personally call it the ‘fluff and buff’ or the ‘smoke and mirrors’ act. The staging helps make the home attractive to many and less personalized. Please feel free to contact me for help on the road to selling your home.

July 3rd, 2017 by Darcy

Surprisingly this is still an accurate portrayal of the island of Hawaii. Wonderful shots and great narrative from Don Blanding.
Enjoy, it is a bit long but worth every bit of it.

January 19th, 2017 by Darcy

Totally off the grid homes do not need to look like hobbit houses. The home featured below is what we call luxury living off the grid. (More info below the photograph.)


This home is not connected to the power grid. The PV system with batteries provides for 100% of the power needs all year long. The house also provides its own purified water using a well-designed catchment system. And 100% of the blackwater (sewage) and grey water (used water not considered blackwater) is handled on site.

The home is also third party certified by the USGBC at the LEED Platinum level, meaning it has been verified to be super green.

Rhonda Goyke
Green Sand Architecture + Sustainability

Email D’Arcy Kerrigan for more information about finding YOUR sustainable new home in Hawaii.

January 11th, 2017 by Darcy

Don’t underestimate or undervalue what can be done with minor and major renovations to the existing housing stock. Buying a home in a great neighborhood that may need some work may be the best investment and decision. It is certainly good for the planet.

Everything that has already been constructed or manufactured has what is called “embodied energy.” Embodied energy is the energy consumed by all of the processes associated with the production of a building, from the mining and processing of natural resources to manufacturing, transport and product delivery.

So don’t casually call in the bulldozer or buy a house with an unreasonable commute by overlooking a fixer upper.

There may also be more complex reasons to buy a fixer upper that involves permitting issues. Sometimes there are homes that have “existing non-conforming” structures. This means that the existing house can continue to exist but if torn down, a new house would need to strictly follow current building codes and practices.

We have one client that was able to retain a 3-story house by doing a major renovation. If they had taken the contractor’s advice and demolished the existing home and started from scratch, the current codes would have allowed only a 2-story home. They would have lost valuable square footage as well as their awesome view.

Work with your realtor to find you a fixer upper in your dream neighborhood. And ask Green Sand to evaluate what potential exists, this is a cost effective way to determine potential before dismissing a house that may not be pretty to look at. Take a second and third look at that worse house in the best neighborhood and visualize and see the potential.

If you are like most people and have trouble imagining what could be, ask Green Sand to sketch it up or do a 3D rendering to help you see the potential. This is money well spent to potentially avoid a long commute or to get into that perfect neighborhood. The project below is a wonderful example of looking past the current horrible condition to the potential that existed.


Rhonda Goyke
Green Sand Architecture + Sustainability

Email D’Arcy Kerrigan for more information about finding YOUR sustainable new home in Hawaii.

December 7th, 2016 by Darcy

So you are a renter or just bought your first home and think there isn’t much you can do to be green or sustainable (after all, funds are tight). NOT true my friends. Little decisions and efforts do make a difference, so jump in and do what you can.

Here are some ideas for things you can do at home:

  • Use natural and non-toxic cleaning supplies. You can make your own and save money as well. Vinegar and baking soda are a great start and there are many recipes online. Keeping toxins out of your house helps create a healthier indoor environment for you and your family. Healthy humans are also better for the planet and have less impact on all sorts of social and economic levels.
  • When you buy water fixtures including toilets, always buy EPA Water Sense fixtures. These are 3rd party certified to use less water. Know before you shop. Hawaii has a limited quantity of fresh water, so help reduce your use. Board of Water Supply has many great ideas as well.
  • When you buy paint and similar materials, always buy No VOC whenever possible. VOCs are chemicals that are not healthy for you and can be concentrated indoors, making the fumes even harder to dissipate and making your exposure greater over time.
  • Use reclaimed and repurposed materials when possible. There is a huge impact on the planet from the collection, manufacturing, transportation and ultimate disposal of building materials. Instead of our current “cradle to grave” lifestyles (things are manufactured once i.e. the cradle and then disposed after one use i.e. the grave) think about adopting an attitude of “cradle to cradle” where there is little to no waste and building materials are kept in use over time. For an island state, nowhere is this more important.
  • Focus on natural ventilation and natural daylighting as much as possible. Healthier for you and better for the planet.


Natural Ventilation, Natural Lighting
Design to focus on the view, views of nature impact us in a positive healthy way

Rhonda Goyke
Green Sand Architecture + Sustainability

Email D’Arcy Kerrigan for more information about finding YOUR sustainable new home in Hawaii.