Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
What do we do with ALL the Waste Created in a Remodel ?

Windows to neighbors, antique dealer

Cabinets re-used in garage; tub, wall heater, doors given to Habitat for Humanity

Fridge, washer & dryer to Salvation Army. Bookshelves re-used in office.

Some old attic insulation re-used in garage and in isolated new foundations.

Oak floor sold on CriagsList.

Sinks & Faucets salvaged from Orange County remodel.

Wood waste

It takes some time and a creative effort to be thoughtful about all of the waste generated from a significant remodel. 

Landfill Diversion 

In Santa Barbara, we have the benefit of Marborg Industries who is a leader in recycling waste. They have a substantial sorting facilty right in town.

We had a goal of 95% of the remodel waste being diverted from the landfill - while that was a bit ambitious we did reach 85%!!


We used an aging Acacia tree that was on-site for mulch and to build the frames for all the cabinets throughout the house. We cut it down with a local crew, milled in San Luis Obispo - 45 minutes north - and the cabinets were made in Somis - about 45 minutes south east.

While this was a risk to take since no one had worked with Acacia for cabinets it is one of the parts of our project that I appreciate and enjoy the most.



We saved mature plants and trees, transplanting them to other parts of the yard. I am most pleased with the successful transplant of two 15 foot Eastern RedBud trees  - now we have a mini grove of three RedBuds on the south eastern edge of the property.

The Western Redbud is a beautiful desciduous tree - large purple leaves that change colors and then drop. The new leaves are proceeded by tiny white-pink elegant flowers along the branches. Below you can see one of the RedBuds with new leaves, still relatively small. The leaves will get to be the size of a very large hand.

One man's junk ... 

The internet is a great asset to quickly and efficiently get your stuff available to the masses. We regularly used CraigsList to find people who were interested in all sorts of stuff including the old Oak flooring.  We also salvaged oil -rubbed brass lights, faucets and sinks from a remodel in Orange county.

Habitat for Humanity, the Salvation Army, neighbors and strangers were all helpful in relieving us of stuff that otherwise would have gone to the landfill.

The wood waste on the left was used at other job sites. Even our dumpster was  combed thru by strangers looking for "scraps".

It takes some effort, preparation and thoughtfulness but it can be fun and save your landfill at the same time.

Next: Products & Vendors