Simple Green Additions
One of the biggest trends in home improvement, especially in Washington State, is remodeling with sustainability in mind. Remodeling your home to make it more “green”, means reducing your home’s impact on the environment. Most of what is done by going “green” includes: using less resources such as water and energy, using building products that are made from sustainable or renewable materials, enhancing the health of your home which means improving indoor air quality and removing mold and rot, and using long-lasting, low maintenance building products that don’t require paints and chemicals to maintain or won’t end up in the landfill after only a few years of use.
It is not something that you have to do all at once, it can be done project by project and as your budget allows. Not only will it increase the efficiency of your home but it will reduce its impact on the environment.
Some quick-fixes include:
- Replace all of your old incandescent light bulbs with florescent or LED bulbs.
- Installing rain barrels under your gutters to capture rain water and use it to water your flower or vegetable garden, which also reduces your water bill.
Some bigger projects include:
- Natural light – New energy-efficient windows can reduce your heating and cooling bills while maximizing natural light to reduce your use of artificial light in your home.
- Moisture – Not only can it compromise the structure of your home, but it can create unhealthy living conditions. A change in siding can help with this, by increasing air flow and keeping moisture out.
- Insulation – Replacing or enhancing this can help reduce your heating and cooling bill.
- Hardwood floors – with proper care, hardwood floors last up to four times as long as carpet and require less upkeep.
On top of it all, going “green” helps to reduce home maintenance. By remodeling your home with higher quality, sustainable building materials, you not only can reduce the time spent maintaining your home, you can reduce your use of paints, household cleaners, and other products for upkeep.