When having a new home built, you would do well to consider all the eco-friendly options possible and discuss these with a home builder. Your home and site will have quite a bit of impact on the environment while the house is being built and then after you take occupancy, so note a few factors to consider and talk over with your builder.
Design the house and lot around the existing trees
Clearing out a lot completely can mean disturbing wildlife, and may even allow for soil erosion. This can be a risk even if you plan on planting new vegetation, as it may take some time for those new roots to get strong and hold moisture in the soil. Large and mature shade trees can also keep your home cool so you use less air conditioning in the summer, and this shade also protects the soil from drying out. Work with your builder and a landscaper to design your new home around as many existing trees as possible to avoid these risks.
Consider your window design
Don't assume that the windows you choose need to be the standard two-section, double hung variety. Casement windows, which have two sections side by side and which open into the home, can allow for more air circulation. These can mean using less electricity for cooling costs during the summer, saving energy and reducing the pollution created by electrical power plants.
Cut down on interior space
You may want a large and spacious home for the open and airy feeling, but the larger the home, the more energy needed to heat and cool it throughout the year. Have just one room of the home open and airy and then reduce the size of other rooms as much as possible. Talk to your builder about hidden storage options such as shelving built into walls, so that you can reduce closet sizes and other storage areas that often just waste your energy consumption.
Recycle the water
A water recycling system is not difficult to install in a residential home; this can capture water from the sinks and showers, filter it, and then use that water for the outdoor sprinklers. The water can also be redirected to the toilet tanks, so you don't use fresh water for flushing toilets. Underground trenches and pipes can also be added to the home's design so that water from the downspouts is then redirected to areas of the lawn that need more water, versus wasting that rainwater and then using fresh water for the home's yard.