If you have the resources for building a home, why not make it an eco-friendly one? Not only will it help you save money on building costs, it can also help save the environment as well. Do your part for Mother Nature by following these tips on building an eco-friendly home.
1.Â Â Â Come up with an aesthetically attractive, eco-friendly design.
As with any other construction project, the first step you need to take in building an eco-friendly home is making a design that utilizes natureâ€™s gifts, such as the sun, breeze, and shade. Taking advantage of these aspects can help you save a lot on electricity bills.
Other things to consider in designing an eco-friendly home are hot water systems powered by solar power, rainwater catchment, overhands, and grey water recycle, to name a few.
2.Â Â Â Only use recyclable materials.
Now that you have come up with a great design, itâ€™s time to make it tangible by using earth-friendly materials â€“ those made from recyclable materials or sustainable sources. Not only do these materials address the problem of burgeoning landfills, they are also created in such a way that they can minimize greenhouse gas emission, pollution, energy consumption, and over-all waste.
For studs, you can use recycled lumber. Use recycled jeans for wall insulation. Seam metal roofing, cement board siding and stone and brick are other earth-friendly construction materials. Wood products made of plastic are good materials to use as well. Make use of paints with LOW-VOC labels and particleboards that are formaldehyde-free, as they donâ€™t release harmful toxins to the atmosphere.
3.Â Â Â Make your home and your backyard energy-efficient.
Now that your homeâ€™s exteriors are earth-friendly, itâ€™s time to make the interiors eco-friendly as well. One method is to insulate your house, attic, exterior walls, and floors â€“ name it.
Also make use of energy-efficient windows that have improved frames, protective coatings, and double panes. Let these windows face south, so you can maximize the warming rays of the sun.Add skylights to your home, so you donâ€™t have to use lights during the day.
Even the way you design your backyard can make a big impact on Mother Nature. For one, plant trees around your home to utilize the cooling shade it can bring during the warm summer months. It can also absorb the carbon dioxide emissions and produce fresh oxygen in return. You can also design water sheds that direct rainwater to your plants and trees.
4.Â Â Â Use energy-creating and saving appliances
Instead of purchasing electricity that is produced with polluting effects, why not opt for natural sources of electricity? Examples include solar electric panels that you can install on the roof. If you have a big parcel of land, you can go for wind power systems.
Purchase appliancesâ€”especially heating and cooling unitsâ€”bearing the Energy Star label. These appliances can cut the electric costs by half.
Building an eco-friendly home seems like a daunting task, but with the available materials, appliances, and technologies, you can have an energy-efficient home for a lot less.
About the Author
Hadi Arti is a partner & CEO at RE/MAX Executive Realty, a Charlotte North Carolina Real Estate company providing the most-up-to-date listing in Charlotte, North Carolina. Hadi has more than 30 years of residential real estate experience as a Realtor, broker, and home builder.