- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 5, 2014

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louis Fournet of Franklin says he was thinking of moving to control his allergies, but an LSU AgCenter open house convinced him he won’t have to.

Fournet was among people attending the quarterly open house at LaHouse Home and Landscape Resource Center, according to an AgCenter news release. The open house on Saturday focused on indoor air quality and safety features.

“I was thinking about moving to the desert, but I got a lot of ideas here that are cheaper than moving,” he said.

Extension housing specialist Claudette Reichel told Fournet that reducing humidity would help cut down the dust mites and molds that trigger his allergies. “Dust mites cannot reproduce when indoor humidity is below 50 percent,” she said.

She showed Fournet four dehumidifying systems at LaHouse. Two are portable and two are whole-home units.



LaHouse is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for self-guided tours. The seasonal Saturday open houses accommodate people who can’t visit on a weekday.

Pete and Maureen Rucci, of Baton Rouge, came to the open house for tips on handicapped-accessible building, termite control and moisture.

The couple is interested in building a home near San Antonio, Texas.

“We’re interested in building techniques to avoid problems down the road and reduce long-term costs and maintenance,” Pete Rucci said.

LaHouse is built with universal design features that make it an easy home to navigate for children, seniors or people with handicaps.

“You want to ensure convenient living in your home throughout life, so you want to build universal design,” Reichel told the Ruccis. This includes 4-foot clearances in hallways and around counters, 3-foot interior doorways, curbless thresholds and shower, and an accessible master bedroom and bathroom on the first floor.

Reichel said she chose the indoor air quality and home safety feature for the fall open house because with winter approaching, people will be spending more time indoors and there is a strong connection between home and health.

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