You spend hours watching HGTV. Your Pinterest boards make you look like a professional interior designer. Your idea of a great Saturday is going to your local hardware store. At the same time, you care about protecting the environment.
So how do you combine your love for all things home improvement with your desire to make a positive impact? The truth is, there are plenty of ways to make your home renovations more sustainable.
Read on how to learn how to renovate your home—eco-friendly style.
#1 Have a Lightbulb Moment
Installing new light fixtures is a great way to make your home feel bigger and brighter. From can lights to chandeliers to recessed track lighting, your options are almost endless. However, there’s one choice that’s totally off the table if you’re trying to go green—using energy-zapping bulbs.
Instead, opt for sustainable LED bulbs. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors, so you won’t be stuck with a harsh, fluorescent-like glow. LED bulbs can be a little more expensive, but they’ll more than pay for themselves once you notice how much lower your electricity bills are every month.
#2 Keep Your Cool
Sure, renovating is an exercise in patience, but we’re actually talking about your air conditioning unit. Cooling your home requires a ton of energy, and older systems tend to be energy-draining beasts. If you want a renovation that will really make a difference, consider upgrading your HVAC system. Here’s what you need to look for:
- Eco-friendly coolant – When you’re on the market for a new cooling system, look for options that use refrigerants that won’t damage the environment.
- Correct size – This might seem like a no-brainer, but if you’ve added an addition to your home or you notice your system is frequently turning off and on, you might need to invest in a different size unit. If your AC is the wrong size for your house (even if it’s too small), it probably means you’re using more energy than you need to.
- Alternative energy sources – This option is for homeowners who are serious about going green. Cutting down on fossil fuels is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. If you want to get off the grid and onto a better path, invest in solar panels.
If you’re (understandably) worried about the cost of updating your cooling system, consider looking into AC finance options.
#3 Go With the (Low) Flow
This is about more than adopting an easy-going outlook. What we’re referring to are low flow plumbing fixtures. These helpful green gadgets reduce the amount of water you use by taking advantage of water-saving technology. Low-flow options are available for:
If you’re imagining a shower that feels more like a sprinkle, don’t! Most of the time you won’t even notice a difference.
#4 Be an Energy Star
Luckily, you don’t have to guess which appliances are the most sustainable. The term “Energy Star” isn’t just another marketing buzzword. It actually comes from a government-backed program that aims to reduce energy usage.
No matter where you buy them, Energy Star appliances come with two price tags. One with the price of the item, and another that lets you know how much it costs to operate them. This information can help you gauge which items use the least amount of resources. Consider purchasing an Energy Star:
- Washing machine
Home is Where the Sustainability Is
See? There are plenty of ways to upgrade your home without abandoning your sustainability values! The best part is, these renovations will actually save you money in the long run, meaning you’re investing in the future of your planet and your finances.