K. Rohini, proprietor of Design Infinity, an eight-year-old company that provides specialised services for various tile and stone installation systems, talks to Lakshmi Krupa about being a woman contractor in a man's world, about green homes, and more…

Every industry has challenges for women and we overcome them in different ways. In the construction industry, while on one hand there are many successful women architects and interior designers, the other side is that the construction and site work see women mostly as labour. The execution part of the industry is male-dominated. I take every job site as a challenge whether small or big and try to provide the best service I can to retain customers and the quality of my firm.

What does Design Infinity offer?

Design Infinity offers solutions for the laying of different kinds of tiles and stones in buildings, be it residential, commercial, swimming pool, industrial floors or walls. The modern process of laying tiles does not end with using adhesive materials but also involves analysis of the whole situation of substrate/surface and the area of use where tiles or stones have to be fixed. The laying process consists of the use of surface preparation products (such as waterproofing products), the right kind of adhesive and finally providing grouts and sealants for long lasting joints.

Tell us a little bit about your relationship with the Kerakoll brand?

Design Infinity is the authorised distributor and applicator for Kerakoll and provides solutions to customers in the installation of tiles and stones. Design Infinity has expertise in providing consultancy and solutions for vitrified tile laying, stone floor and facade, waterproofing solutions for wet areas such as swimming pool, roof and terrace gardens. Design Infinity deals exclusively with Kerakoll products because of its green features.

Can you turn an existing building into a green building?

Yes, to a certain extent. You will need a certified green architect. And you must keep in mind a few pointers: allow free flow of air and sunlight into your building, save rain water by re-harvesting and changing the water recycling system of the building for reuse in flushes and in the garden, save electricity by adopting solar energy in bathrooms and other areas and, if possible, install photo-voltaic panels to generate solar power.

What should people keep in mind before deciding to start building a green home?

In general and in the absence of a certified green architect, people can incorporate the following features into a building to make it green without spending too much:

- While designing, allow free flow of air and light into the building. You will save a lot of electricity. For example, a roof light in an atrium will ensure that the insides of the building have enough light during the day.

- Design the building in the north-to-south direction for plenty of sunshine to enter the home.

- Use recycling systems of water for flushes, cleaning, and garden areas.

- Use solar panels on the roof or façade to run your water heater.

- Use material that is recycled, and that is VOC certified.

- Use air-conditioning and electrical systems based on sensors and thermostats.

- Use less cement to reduce CO2 emissions and more natural material like stone or metal, which also provide good strength for walls and roof.

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