How can individuals make their homes more sustainable?
Sustainable living is becoming easier, and more important than ever. There are plenty of ways to live “greener” and more sustainably, even without having to bike to work, give up your favorite foods, or live off the grid. There are so many benefits too; ranging from the unexpected to better health. Sustainable homes also provide lower living costs, more disposable income, and the satisfaction of being kinder to the environment. So what are some of the ways you can go greener right at home, without having to make major lifestyle changes overnight?
1. Weather Stripping
For those looking for really simple, affordable ways to be a little greener and more energy efficient, it can be as easy as replacing or installing new weather stripping around openings to regulate temperature.
Windows are one of the most important elements when it comes to energy efficiency. It could be time to replace windows with those that will better keep the cold out or heat in. Used effectively, they can optimize light and reduce energy consumption needs, while the right window coverings can aid in optimizing temperature naturally.
Solar isn’t new, but still remains underestimated. Depending on where you live, you could get rebates or be eligible for grants or low rate loans to install solar. Some residents even get paid for having it, while enjoying free energy. Beyond lighting, solar can be used to heat water, and with a battery backup can help residents survive through an array of natural disasters.
4. Rainwater Collection
Rainwater harvesting is now at the point solar was a few years ago. Many have eliminated their electric bills with solar, but many not only face high water bills, but increasing insecurity over the quality of, and even consistent supply of clean water. From collection pools to smart roofs, rainwater can be both collected and purified at home.
5. Sustainable Gardens
Sustainable gardens offer many benefits and can be engaged, regardless of whether you have an expansive estate or micro-loft. Each garden can help reduce water consumption and energy needs, provide food and incomes, and can be lots of fun, never mind therapeutic to manage. They can also make great selling features.
6. Energy Efficient Appliances
This doesn’t have to add cost. Simply whenever you next need to replace appliances choose the most energy efficient ones. Better refrigerators, washers, dryers, and water heaters are best for the environment. Green air conditioners can help save even more.
7. Optimize Insulation
Smarter choices in flooring can make a big difference in home energy needs. A few tips from your local air conditioning experts can help optimize your ceiling and roof insulation. For example; in destinations like Florida where it is hot virtually all year round, allowing more heat to escape attic spaces can help keep homes cooler and reduce needs for running air conditioning units.
8. Reclaimed and Recycled Materials
Using recycled and re-purposed materials doesn’t have to mean sacrificing class. Reclaimed items can actually be fabulous, elegant and luxurious. Think stained glass windows from old churches, regal handcrafted doors, and refinished antique chests.
9. Buy or Build it
When it’s time to move; why not buy a green home, or commission your own custom built green home? Many new homes are increasingly including more green elements. There are more green manufactured homes to choose from. For those that want more value, there are many freshly renovated homes which have been updated with sustainable elements, energy efficient appliances and features, and green materials.
10. Choose a Green Location
The area you choose to live or invest in can make a significant difference. It’s great to support green cities, and some might be surprised that some destinations like Miami are considered to be among the cleanest. Smart locations can help prevent waste and loss involved in needing to rebuild due to disasters. Communities also demonstrate different levels of dedication to sustainability. The best not only provide healthier environments, but preserve their natural surroundings too.
How will you create a more sustainable life?