With global warming on everyone’s mind, when shopping for your dream home, be on the lookout for more environmentally-friendly houses. We all contribute to the environmental impact, and if you can lessen your carbon footprint with your new abode, you are doing your part to reduce yours.
Buying a new home is such an exciting endeavor but also fraught with some stress and decisions. Often you start with a big list of wants but then end up having to compromise something. When searching for your next home, be aware that there are dozens of opportunities within the house for an environmentally-friendly option. It’s all about prioritization.
Figuring out if a home is eco-friendly may seem confusing or complicated, but it’s not. These tips on finding an eco-friendly house in your area should help you in your home search.
Make Sure Your House Has an Eco-Friendly Fireplace
A fireplace is the heart of the home, adding warmth and comfort to your living space. However, traditional fireplaces are not very eco-friendly and are quickly being replaced by greener alternatives. Wood-burning fireplaces can put toxic chemicals in the air while also devastating our forests.
When touring a new home, ask questions about the fireplace. Some modern options that are much better for our environment are ethanol, electric, eco-friendly wood burning, pellet, and gas fireplaces. Each has its own advantages depending on the fuel sources you select. Before you select the perfect home, consider the fireplace type.
No fireplace will be utterly devoid of impacting the environment, but you can select one that limits dangerous exposure of chemicals and depleting our natural resources. Electric fireplaces are considered the most eco-friendly and affect the environment the least. They have dozens of models and designs to fit any style.
After Purchase, Make Your Home Greener
If the house you purchase does not include all the eco-friendly features you wanted, you can implement them after your own it. Depending on complexity and cost, you can do a few things now and some of the more extensive ones over time. The first thing you might want to do is hire an agency to do an energy audit and identify the areas that need work.
One quick and easy eco-friendly idea is installing a programmable thermostat like a Nest. You can set the temperature on timers, so the heat only comes on when you want it to and other times stays off conserving energy. Replacing your light bulbs with compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs also saves money and energy.
If you really want to make an impact, install solar panels on your roof to power your whole house; this is a great eco-friendly idea. Putting in underfloor heating also helps save on using the furnace and swapping out the shower head for a more eco-friendly model saves water. Updating your insolation with recycled materials help to keep your home warm in the winter and cooler in the summer.
The Eco-Friendly Final Touches
When time and money affords, you can install wooden, double-pane windows to protect your investment and keep the elements outside where they belong. When painting the exterior or interior of your new home, use water-based, low-VOC paints with natural pigment.
Every little bit helps, including buying supplies and food locally rather than having things shipped. You can even seek out natural, recycled furniture and fixtures for your home and decorate it knowing you are also supporting our planet and future generations. Load up your home with smart technology that helps turn off the lights, turn the heat down and regulate energy efficiency in appliances and other mechanical devices in your house.
No matter where you live, there will always be environmentally-friendly options for your new home. Even if you have to find special contractors who only deal in natural, recycled products and supplies, you can have the eco-friendly home you have always wanted.
In your home search, you should consider choosing environment friendly options