More homeowners are choosing sustainable and long-lasting home upgrades that not only minimize energy and water consumption (and expenses) but also make their homes healthier spaces.
Here’s a look at some of the top eco-friendly home improvements.
1. Insulate Walls, Windows and Floors
Insulating your home is one of the best ways to minimize your electricity bill because your home will be able to retain heat during the winter and stay cool during the summer, all on its own. All you have to know is what needs insulation.
Start with the easiest task and insulate the windows. You can insulate old windows with weatherstripping if you’re being frugal; however, the best option would be to upgrade them to newer models, such as double-glazed windows.
Next, insulate the attic. This may be where most of your home’s heat is lost, and where cold air seeps into the interior.
If you can afford to, insulate the floors as well, so heat doesn’t escape through cracks during the cold winter months.
2. Consider Sustainable Flooring
Speaking of flooring solutions, another sustainable option is to upgrade old flooring with durable, eco-friendly materials.
You can find flooring solutions made of sustainable materials such as bamboo and cork, which offer long-term durability at no cost to the environment.
Contrary to popular belief, traditional wood flooring is not considered sustainable because the material is harvested from timber, which is made possible because of deforestation.
Instead, choose eco-friendly options that not only look great, but also boast numerous other benefits.
Cork and bamboo flooring are easy to install and cost about as much as traditional hardwood, minus the environmental impact.
Keep in mind that bamboo flooring doesn’t absorb sound, while cork feels soft underfoot and is silent.
3. Cleanse the Air
One of the most affordable solutions is to cleanse the home’s air.
Unfortunately, simply airing every room out on a daily basis or pulling up the blinds to let sunlight permeate the interior is not enough to cleanse the air of toxins, pollutants and pathogens.
That’s why investing in an air purifier is a good long-term solution.
While you could choose a general-purpose purifier, the most effective solution would be to purchase a model for your exact need, such as a powerful air purifier for mold if your home doesn’t get enough sunlight, or a model that eliminates dust if you live in a densely populated area.
You can combine an air purifier with air-purifying plants; the more plants you have, the greater the effect.