Only a few years ago, creating an environmentally sustainable home was the goal of a select few, ranging from a handful of stylish fad fixtures, to shaping the entire aesthetic of a house. But with the remarkable recent advances in design, science, and culture, anyone now building a house has no reason to forego the incorporation of green elements — and the same is especially true of simple, new additions to an already existing home. Whether you’re building a house from scratch or revamping your homestead, sustainability can be an effortless and rewarding cornerstone of your home that pays dividends for decades to come.
Any renovation inherently costs an upfront investment, but with green additions and remodeling comes the unusual benefit of direct financial gains within mere months. While contractors on your average, run-of-the-mill renovation take care to detail the future fiscal benefits of renovation — greater property appeal, higher resale values, real estate growth over time — with sustainable remodeling comes nearly immediate returns. It’s purely logical, and shows within the first month of your energy bills: designs intended to use less energy for the sake of the environment, also use less energy for the sake of your pocketbook.
The easiest change within the home comes from having your property inspected for energy leaks, allowing for quick changes in the moment and better planning in the future. Most people are aware of and consider drafts or leaks in winter, but forget that the same concept applies as we approach these warmer summer months. Insulation keeps both warm and cool air within your space, and filling those tiny areas and corners where escapement occurs in the cracks around and between insulation requires only a second of repair, but makes for a lifetime of savings.
Additional refurbishment is hardly more complex than sealing insulation: window shades. While it is absolutely best to invest in refitting window frames that seal out any possible leaks — ideally with freshly-designed glass engineered to handle temperatures and energy fluctuation — the simple action of adding a new window treatment can have the same effect, and look gorgeous as well. Excellent drapes aren’t just for interior designers and Grandma’s lace anymore, but can be adding tremendous energy savings as well, and can be planned for throughout your energy surveyance.
At multiple stages in the homeowners’ process comes the too-often-dreaded overhaul of appliances. Necessary but expensive, worthwhile but stressful, there is little else as galling as the cyclical replacement of washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, and every other household amenity. But with new companies dedicated to intelligent energy design, and the classic companies rebooting with the help of agencies like Energy Star, this endless parade has become far more exciting and filled with possibility. With the environment in mind, these machines are often built to last longer so that the energy expended in their creation stretches farther — not to mention that they do more than your old-school appliances while hurting your water supply and energy bill less. Much like anything else in sustainable technology, your investment is a guarantee for the future of your savings, environmentally and fiscally.
Whether your focus is a new house or the family estate, the green of the planet or the green in your pocket, there is virtually no argument left to ignore the sound logic of investing in sustainable home infrastructure. Not only are the possible changes to make simple in concept, but are also simple in action, and these first basic steps will keep you going down the path of developing a beautiful home that provides for generations to come. If you’re ready to go green in your home, contact us for a consultation.