Every profession needs a watchdog that can push it to even greater achievements. For remodelers, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Partnership for Advancing Technology in Housing (PATH) has come up with an easy-to-follow, top 10 list for remodelers. The goal is to pinpoint areas where simple and effective improvements can be made. These items enhance overall structure, energy efficiency, healthy living and resource conservation. PATH’s list touches almost every area of the home but in a meaningful and affordable way.

When it comes to energy efficiency, PATH encourages correctly sized heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC); compact fluorescent lighting; wireless lights and controls; spray foam insulation to prevent air infiltration; high-performance windows and storm windows; and programmable thermostats. For resource conservation, they suggest renewable materials for flooring, solar hot water, front-loading washing machines and low-flow toilets. They also advocate tubular skylights to bring more light to the interior and smart ventilation and ventilation controls to enhance the indoor air and living quality.

One good thing about the PATH list is how simple it is to remember. Contractors and professional remodelers can use it as a checklist to see if they are hitting a percentage of these items in every remodel. Homeowners can use it as a gauge of how well they are doing in their home improvements. It’s actually a guideline to successfully creating more livable, environmentally responsible houses and one that we can all achieve with a little planning and commitment.

PATH Top 10