If you’re thinking of remodeling your home it’s important that you look at options, ideas and add ons that are not only beneficial for you and your family, but that are sustainable for the environment as well. We need to protect and care for what we love, so the earth we live on should be no different. There are many green and non-toxix options to choose from as well as ones that conserve energy and costs. Here are some basic starter ideas we at Unique Home Building would like to share with you.
Hire a green contractor: You’ll have a better chance of negotiating successfully with builders if you know about the details that make for a green home. One good way to learn is to get a book on construction and decide what it is that’s important to you and to communicate that to your contractor. Some options to consider are green roofs, rain storage collection and low voc paints.
Instal solar panels: Solar panels are a great way to conserve energy and utilize natural electricity. To see if your home is a candidate for solar panels, go out on your roof on a sunny day mid-morning and see if the sun shines on it. Do this again mid-afternoon. If the sun shines through on the shingles for most of those in between hours, and your home isn’t blocked by nearby buildings or hills, then you could be a great candidate for natural energy in your home!
Recycled insulation: Not many people know this, but you can insulate your home with used denim! Ask your friends and family to donate their old ripped up jeans and jackets and stuff your walls with less toxicity and waste.
Low VOC paints: Choose paints that have less toxins in them for your whole family’s health. There are also many new painting methods out there where you can mix clays and natural elements with water and simply wash the color on with a cloth.
Reclaim it: Go to a local recycled materials business and choose ‘already loved’ building materials, wood, doors, fixtures, windows etc. Why buy new when you can use something in fine shape and keep less from going to the dump?
Use a fireplaces insert: Fireplaces inserts (rather than a traditional fireplace) that can burn logs and paper trash, has intake and outflow vents at the bottom and top (you shouldn’t need a circulating blower), has an easily operable damper, and sports large glass doors so you can enjoy the dancing flames. A fireplace insert is 50–75 per cent efficient and easier to operate. Another option would be a gas fireplace or dutch oven.
Efficient indoor spaces: By removing useless corners, unused crannies, gun barrel hallways, seas of circulation around islands of furniture, and other chubby cubic footage indoors, not only will you be more comfortable in less space, you may have enough room in your home to install an office, have an exercise area (instead of driving to a dues-paying health club), and store more belongings (rather than rent a storage unit miles away). One of many clever ploys: Convert the usual wasted space between a row of studs into a hallway library or similar shelving. This can be done almost anywhere indoors.
Unique Home Building is dedicated to making your home the finest quality living space you can imagine. Call us today to see how we can make your home a place you love!