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Martha Stewart Embarks on New Green Building Venture
Spray foam insulation and solar water heater makes Florida home eco-friendly

WINDERMERE, FL - January 19, 2011 -- Martha Stewart and KB Homes are embarking on a new joint venture that will see the famed businesswoman and TV personality lend her considerable (if somewhat diminished) influence to a new line of ecologically-friendly homes.

Their concept home is located in Windermere, Florida. According to the Wall Street Journal's Developments real estate blog, it has a price tag of $380,000 with a foot print of 2,600 square feet.

The median home price in Windermere is just under $580,000.

From low-emission paints to a solar water heater and spray foam insulation, the house is designed to have a minimal carbon footprint - within, says Stewart, the bounds of economic rationality. Stewart has long been known for her approach to homemaking that combines flights of fancy with discipline and a keen eye for the bottom line.

It seems like the Windermere home is a green enthusiast's dream come true, though, with solar photovoltaic panels for electricity and even a charging station for a plug-in vehicle like the Chevy Volt or Nissan Leaf. Of course, it's also all color-coordinated to Stewart's own specifications.

KB Homes won't be offering these homes on the broader market just yet; it had to spend $70,000 to get the home to net-zero status, meaning that its contribution to the electrical grid is equal to its consumption. The company will be implementing some of the lessons learned in this model home, however, and offering them on different lines from KB Homes.

"By bringing some attention to [green building], we think that these things will become more affordable in the future," KB chief executive officer Jeff Mezger told the WSJ.

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