Eco-friendly homes are becoming more popular than ever. As awareness about environmental issues and global warming grows, more eco-conscious individuals are looking at ways that they can less harm to the natural world.
One of the best ways to start a journey towards being more eco-friendly is by looking at your own home. Eco-friendly homes are not only better for the planet, they also have benefits for the home’s inhabitants and their bank balance.
There are three main ways that a home can be made more environmentally friendly. The first is by improving energy efficiency, the second is by adding certain eco features and thirdly you can make it healthier by minimising pollutants.
But first, let’s take a more in depth look at why making your home more eco-friendly is such a good idea:
It can increase your property’s value
Investing in a green home might be a smart choice if you plan to put your property on the market in the future. There is growing demand for these homes and so buyers are often willing to pay more than average prices.
There are cost effective alternative to normal building materials
Creating an environmentally friendly dwelling does not necessarily have to be a huge financial investment, there are cheaper alternative building materials and structures. Do your research to find alternatives that suit your lifestyle, budget and the location in which you would like to live.
It can help to minimize certain health risks
A green home is great for you and the planet. Eco materials are usually free from harmful chemicals that are sometimes added in manufacturing processes.
They are also free from potential environmental pollutants. These materials can be used for flooring, work surfaces, wall installations and furnishings.
While some eco built products for the home may cost a little more, they are often built to last. You can always look for reclaimed and upcycled furnishings in order to cut costs.
Lower your carbon footprint
Using green techniques to build and furnish your home will lower your carbon footprint, meaning you are having a less harmful impact on the natural world. Keeping a low carbon footprint can help to sustain the natural environment for future generations to enjoy.
So, what are some of the best features of an environmentally friendly home?
Good home insulation will help to restrict air flow and retain heat during the winter months. By reducing the need for other heating and cooling solutions you can save money and reduce energy consumption.
One example of a natural insulation is sheep’s wool, you can also use ThermaCork which is both renewable and biodegradable. Other types of eco insulation include Aerogel, which despite being 90 percent air it is able to stop heat passing through it well, or Spray foam insulation Icynene.
Water conservation techniques
In recent years, more than 45 percent of the United States has experienced abnormally dry or drought conditions. A great place to start in this department is dual-flushing toilets and low flow showers.
More advanced techniques include rainwater harvesting. You can collect and store rainwater for uses such as irrigation use, toilet flushing, refilling water features and sprinkler systems.
There are a few types of renewable energy to consider using for your home, their suitability will depend on your location, housing type and budget.
You can install solar panels to the roof of your house if you are in an area with enough sunlight, this will enable you to harness the power of the sun and significantly reduce energy costs.
Wind turbines are often used commercially, however smaller models are also available for residential property use. As the blades turn in the wind, electricity is generated. Biomass fuels can also be burnt to generate heat for hot water and heating systems. These are made from renewable sources like wood pellets and logs.
If you happen to have a large body of water on your land then it is worth looking into hydroelectric systems. These are powered by water that flows downhill.
Reducing the amount of electricity you require is also an option. One way of doing this is by introducing more natural lighting into your home through window design, in cold climates you will want windows facing the sun’s path and the opposite is true in warmer locations.
Eco friendly home features are great for the planet, aesthetically pleasing and often budget friendly. Implementing even just a couple of these features will have a positive impact on you and the environment.
To read more on topics like this, check out the Home & Garden category
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