Table Of Contents
The reason many people build sustainable homes today goes beyond it being a modern trend. If you are about to build your new home, you would prefer it to be eco-friendly. You would also like it to be energy-efficient. Are these the features of a sustainable home? What makes a house sustainable?
Here we will provide answers to both questions. You can also read up on the types of sustainable homes, their features, renewable energy solutions, and expert tips for making a house more sustainable.
What is a Sustainable Home?
Sustainable homes are homes that are built with an emphasis on more efficient usage of energy. You make sure you use durable building materials so that the home can last longer. Such homes are money-saving and do not need much maintenance. To make your house sustainable, you need to keep energy conservation in mind when building it.
This entails incorporating features that optimise resources and extend the home's and its appliances' lifespan. In other words, you try to make your home eco-friendly using low-impact appliances and energy-efficient building materials and techniques.
How is a "Sustainable" Home Sustainable?
With growing concerns about the rising effects of climate change, such as fires, floods and other natural disasters, eco-friendly housing and sustainable living have become more critical. Homes need to be more energy-efficient and environmentally sustainable.
The "sustainable" component of sustainable homes is shown in the following ways:
• Sustainable and environmentally friendly homes are ultimately energy-saving and economical.
• The home value has increased.
• Sustainable homes protect the planet
• The sustainable design features help provide better health for the entire household.
• There is lower energy and water consumption. This translates into reduced maintenance and energy costs.
• Sustainable houses are more durable and last longer.
• Green buildings provide better air quality due to non-toxic building materials and fresh indoor air.
Types of Sustainable Homes
You can usually make any house sustainable by emphasising energy-conservative features. In general, you can choose from the following types of sustainable homes:
Tiny homes are appreciated for having a low carbon footprint since they are smaller. Using a tiny home house design right from the beginning saves money. You can incorporate clever design ideas for storage spaces.
These are designed and built using factory settings and can be transported to your property thereafter. The focus of prefabricated houses is on reducing energy usage, making them cost-efficient and eco-friendly. They also do not take much time to build.
One interesting thing about shipping containers is that they can later be recycled. In other words, you can renew them to create fresh, functional, eco-friendly homes. You can customise them to your taste and enjoy modern features such as solar power.
Straw bale homes
The advantages of straw bale homes include excellent insulation properties and low-impact building materials. In addition, they do not take time to build and are relatively easy to maintain.
Distinguishing Properties of a Sustainable Home
• The primary quality of a sustainable home is for it to be energy efficient
• It should have low running costs
• A sustainable home should be durable
• The building materials should be eco friendly
• It should take possible family lifestyle changes into account
Features of Sustainable Home Designs
You can now look at the key features and elements a sustainable home should have.
An eco-friendly home should have good insulation. With proper insulation, you can improve energy usage and reduce carbon emissions. Moreover, good insulation can reduce your need for home air conditioning.
Some options for eco-friendly insulation include wool, cork, and recycled plastic. In addition, you can use double glazing to improve your home's thermal efficiency. It makes your home more comfortable and reduces the cost of heating and cooling the home.
You need to ensure that you use a sound water conservation system to reduce water consumption. This is another way to reduce energy usage. Some methods for good water conservation include the following:
• A rainwater harvesting system that provides water for gardening and car washing.
• Installation of low-flow shower heads and water-saving toilets.
• Use of energy appliances like washing machines that reduce water consumption.
Renewable energy solutions
Here, you can choose sustainable energy efficient, and money-saving solutions such as the following:
• Heat pumps
• Solar panels
• Smart technology solutions that regulate temperature
• Using recycled materials and reclaimed wood as home-building materials
• Hydronic heating
Passive design for solar panels
An excellent source of renewable energy and sustainable living is solar energy. With passive solar design, you can naturally heat and cool your home. In addition, it can help provide low solar gain in warmer climates. Moreover, using solar panels helps reduce your carbon footprint while saving energy costs, and you can take advantage of government initiatives such as solar PV rebates.
Drip irrigation systems
A drip irrigation system is a smart landscaping solution for sustainable living.
Install a smart metre
You can easily install a smart meter to help you optimise energy consumption. You only need to program it to turn on boilers or home heating systems at specific times of the day.
Use energy-efficient light bulbs
Energy-efficient lighting can help you save money since they use less electricity and last longer than regular light bulbs.
Invest in underfloor heating
Underfloor heating is a money-saving option as a source of home heating. Some homeowners prefer this option as an alternative to heaters or radiators.
Use water-based paints
Many people prefer water-based paints for the following reasons:
• The natural pigments are great for decorating purposes.
• They are more eco-friendly.
• Water-based paints give good colour choices.
Sustainable Design for Home Owners
You can implement sustainable home designs when building or renovating new homes.
Use passive design
Passive house designs have become popular for being energy efficient. They can help you significantly reduce energy bills and your heating and cooling needs. The factors you should consider for passive design include insulation, glazing, spatial zoning, ventilation, orientation, and thermal mass.
You should use sustainable materials that absorb and release heat appropriately. Suitable sustainable materials include bricks and concrete.
Remember the location of windows and doors and the amount of glass in your home. You can use double glazing to gain passive design advantages.
Expert Tips for Making a House More Sustainable
• Use green cleaning products that pose less harm to the environment.
• Installing a low-flow or an aerated shower head helps you to save energy.
• Always use a sustainable design that optimises energy and water usage.
• You can combine good airflow and natural light to heat the home more naturally and reduce energy consumption.
• Prioritise the use of eco-paints to improve indoor air quality.
• Installing cool roofs gives a cooling effect to the interior of your home. Cool roofs tend to reflect rather than absorb the sun's heat.
• Use renewable energy sources to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
• Use the right building materials, such as high-performance windows that reflect sunlight and reduce energy usage.
• Apart from incorporating passive heating (using heat from the sun), you can ensure your hot water systems and plumbing fixtures have excellent energy ratings.
• Embodied energy describes the energy consumption of products over their lifecycle.
• Use a lifecycle assessment to assess home products' embodied energy and environmental impacts.
Contact Experts for Sustainable Housing Solutions
There is a conclusion you may have derived after reading this piece on what makes a house sustainable. The need for sustainable housing cannot be overstated in today's world. Homeowners do not only want their homes to be environmentally friendly. They also want it to be energy-efficient, and the living spaces must be healthy.
You can call an electrical contractor to help ensure that your insulation, heating, home appliances, and other elements are sustainable. By collaborating with an electrical contractor, homeowners can take significant steps towards making their houses more sustainable.
These professionals have the expertise to assess and recommend energy-efficient products and solutions, helping to create environmentally friendly and energy-efficient homes and promote a healthy living environment.