Environmentalism is one of the most important concepts of our time. To recycling plastics and other waste to reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, most North Americans today actively attempt to reduce their impact on the environment. It should come as no surprise then, that green home renovations are gaining popularity in the construction industry.
Homes, office spaces, and even urban developments are more commonly constructed using green methods. Living spaces need to be eco-friendly and sustainable. So, what can you do to renovate your home so it’s more environmentally responsible? Fortunately, there are many options available to you, and these tips should help you achieve your greenest goals.
During your renovations, there are a lot of small adjustments you can make that have less impact on the environment. More importantly, many green renovations are also better for your budget as they can significantly reduce your overall renovation costs.
- Always plan your renovations carefully so you don’t have to make costly or wasteful changes after the fact. Implementing a clear plan does not require sacrificing flexibility, but it will help to reduce unnecessary adjustments later.
- Hire a contractor with green renovation experience. Your contractor should have a record of past green remodels that demonstrate his or her ability to deliver environmentally-friendly and sustainable renovations.
- Especially when renovating older homes, be careful to contain asbestos and dust to reduce the dangerous risks associated with these materials. Contain your renovation mess in the area being renovated only, and put up barriers at doors and windows to prevent asbestos dust from escaping.
- Recycle materials wherever possible. Many renovations require demolition, and during the demolition you can often save materials for the rebuild. If you can’t reuse these materials for your purposes, consider donating them to local charities. Otherwise, speak to your local recycling depot or landfill to find out which materials can be recycled.
- Improve the insulation in your home to prevent heat loss and lower your energy-use requirements. Sometimes even small adjustments such as adding sealant around windows and doors can have a drastic impact on your energy bill. Also, if you are making more major changes, look to invest in green products. Double-paned windows, energy efficient appliances, and plumbing fixtures that conserve water are all great ways to make your home more green.
- Consider purchasing recycled materials for your home build wherever possible.
- Choose more sustainable building materials. For example, woods such as bamboo, cork, and eucalyptus are more sustainable because they grow quickly.
Ultimately, the extent to which you make your home green depends on the kinds of renovations you are doing and your bottom line. By speaking to a qualified contractor with experience in green renovations, you’ll likely get even more tips about how to make your home sustainable.