Live Healthy – Why Eco-Friendly and Green Houses are all the Rage Today
Going green is no longer an option but rather a necessity to protect the environment from further damage. From corporate establishments to homes, the focus is on using sustainable, greener alternatives to not only improve quality of life but also that of the natural environment.
Eco-friendly, sustainable building material and innovative designs that make best use of natural resources are today characteristic of new houses. As for structures already in place, there are quite a few small, yet effective enhancements that can make them go really green, or at least change a tad in colour! Judicious home décor is by itself a great way to make the interiors clean and safe.
Patronize Usage of Sustainable and Recyclable Materials
Wood has been and still is an integral part of the home. Wooden frames, doors, windows, floors, staircases, decorative pieces, and furniture are common. Simply ensuring that wooden items for the home are from sustainable sources can make a great difference. Reclaimed wood also makes a great alternative.
Recycled products today are symbolic of eco-consciousness. There’s absolutely nothing cheap about using them. Recycled tiles (from wooden laminates, cork, ceramic, etc.) are a neat way to renovate floors across the home, for they can be processed again once they wear out.
Go with Energy Efficient Appliances
Make sure to shop for home appliances that have an ‘Energy Star’ rating. A rated refrigerator or washer dryer not only cuts down on energy consumption but also generates less heat when in operation. HVAC systems are the prime energy-guzzlers, especially in homes. Buying an energy efficient unit, getting it installed with the help of professional, trained installers; regular maintenance and optimal use of thermostats to control the temperatures are, but a few things that can make these systems both eco- and pocket-friendly. Replacing existing thermostats with programmable units such as Nest could also work fine.
A home with ample natural lighting and good cross-ventilation is a rare find. Energy efficient CFLs and LED lighting options take the pinch out of harsh halogen lamps. Ceiling fans also prove quite effective in providing respite from the heat.
Make Use of Green Energy Alternatives
Harnessing solar energy for lighting and heating homes has become quite popular across the country, with the government also offering incentives for those who choose to explore these opportunities. Given the fact that heating water reportedly accounts for a major chunk of heating costs, the effort is worth the expense. Feasibility and viability of solar power generation in the locality should be ascertained before undertaking the venture. In fact, it may also be possible to upload excess power back to grid and avail concessions on energy bills.
Go Green with Organic Materials
Food, clothing, upholstery and linen, paints on the wall and furniture, cleaning liquids, detergents, personal and child care products are again just a few items that can be replaced with organic, non-toxic equivalents to make homes healthy and safe. Choosing products that are free from harmful chemicals go a long way to protect home and environment from pollutants. Water conservation efforts definitely are bound to make homes greener, even if it’s just fixing a faulty tap!