A green building is constructed to be environmentally friendly. It is designed to use fewer resources and minimize its emission of harmful gases.
If your home was not originally built to be a green building, it is okay. There are steps to make your house and lifestyle more sustainable. It is never too late to change your lifestyle.
- Install solar panels in your home.
Over the years, solar panels have become more affordable for many homeowners. Installing a solar system in your home makes your household less dependent on the electricity supplied by the grid. You can have an electricity generation system that can power some, if not all, of your electric devices and appliances.
If you are worried about the upfront and installation costs, most suppliers offer solar-financing options to make it lighter on the pockets.
Here are the great benefits of installing a solar power system in your home.
- It reduces your electricity bills.
- It gives you incentives and tax rebates.
- It reduces your carbon footprint.
- It protects you against the rising costs of energy.
- It increases the value of your home.
- Opt for digital bills and subscriptions.
Ditch your magazine and newspaper subscriptions and enroll your bills to online statements. Choosing to have them digitally sent to you can significantly reduce your paper waste. Imagine eliminating those envelopes of utility bills, credit card bills, telephone bills, and magazines that stack up in your home. You will still get the same content with a digital subscription, minus all the waste.
- Install a rainwater collection system.
A rainwater collection system provides your household with an alternative source of fresh water, which you can use for many chores. Rainwater is clean and unchlorinated water, and watching it all go down the drain is a waste of an opportunity to save on your water bill.
The simplest way to collect rainwater is to have an empty barrel placed in an open area of your yard. If you want to make it more effective, install a harvesting system that can efficiently collect rainwater from your roof gutters and direct them to your barrels.
You can use the water that you have collected for the following:
- Watering your plants and lawn
- Washing your car
- Cleaning your pets
- Washing your driveways and decks
- Mopping your floors, and other home cleaning activities that do not require potable water
- Refilling your fishponds
- Make use of natural light and ventilation.
Open those drapes and windows to let natural light in and reduce your use of artificial lighting during the day. Natural light provides better sleep quality and prevents depression. It makes your home warmer and look more spacious than it is.
Opening your windows and doors provides your home with natural ventilation. It staves off stale and polluted air. It will make you less dependent on mechanical ventilation, letting you save on your electricity bills. Letting in some fresh air reduces the humidity levels in your home, eliminating the risk of mold and mildew. Letting in some cool air can reduce the need for your cooling system.
- Update your windows to become more energy-efficient.
When you use your heating or cooling system, heated and cooled air can escape through windows that are not energy-efficient. Energy-efficient windows, also known as energy-saving windows, are specially designed to prevent heated or cooled air from escaping. It has increased insulation, which helps reduce your energy usage.
Installing energy-efficient windows entitles you to a maximum of $500 tax credits. Tax credits are applicable to the installation of energy-efficient doors and skylights.
- Reuse and reduce your waste significantly.
One of the most straightforward and practical ways to reduce your waste is to say no to plastic and paper bags when you go shopping. Bring your reusable bags. Keep some extra bags with you in your bag or car so that you don’t forget to bring one when you go to the grocery.
Another way to reduce your wastes is to plan your weekly meal. Food contributes to household waste. Eliminate it by having a weekly meal plan and buying only the ingredients that you need.
You can do other things to make your home and lifestyle environmentally friendly. Remember that this our only planet, and everyone must do their share to preserve Mother Earth.