Many people are increasing their efforts to go green. According to a survey from Realtor, 85 percent of Americans said they would gladly pay more to live in an environmentally friendly home, particularly if such a lifestyle resulted in continued energy savings. Even though your budget may not currently hold the means to move into a home constructed in an entirely eco-friendly way, there are several home improvement projects you can undertake to go green and improve the appearance and comfort of your home.
1. Install Environmentally Friendly Flooring
You’re eager to ditch that ratty old carpet but have yet to decide on a flooring option that is comfortable, economical and environmentally friendly. Turns out, you can achieve all three by installing flooring constructed from jute or bamboo. According to HGTV, Jute is “an affordable vegetable fiber that can be spun into durable threads,” so it easily can replace a carpet rug. Bamboo also is a great option because it is one of the fastest-growing plants on earth, and has become very popular with interior designers.
To learn the health hazard of conventional carpet — Check out “Beware of That Soft, Cozy Feeling Beneath Your Feet-Carpets!”
If, however, you’re absolutely attached to the comfort of a carpeted floor, you still can enjoy that plush feel with recycled carpet, notes HGTV. A number of manufacturers have created carpet entirely from recycled materials, removing the waste and high energy use that often accompanies carpet.
2. Ditch Pests Without Pesticides
Termites, bed bugs and roaches are all pests that devalue your home and make life there decidedly unpleasant. Unfortunately, the standard approach to ridding residential areas of such pests involves dousing homes in pesticides that pose a great risk to the environment and to your health.
Replace chemical pesticides with homemade solutions. Global Healing Center suggests trying DIY remedies to common pests.
- A citrus oil and cayenne pepper mix to get rid of ants – mix 10 drops of citrus essential oil with one teaspoon cayenne pepper and 1 cup of warm water. Shake well and spray in the affected areas.
- Using eucalyptus oil for flies, bees and wasps.
- Plant peppermint plants around your house and/or use a reusable spray bottle with 5-7 drops of peppermint essential oil, a drop of dishwashing liquid, and about 16 ounces of warm water. Spray all around your windows, doors, cracks and crevices or anywhere spiders might hide. It will keep those nasty critters away plus you have added a wonderful aroma to your home.
- Use a safe non-toxic natural botanical pest control such as AlwaysEco!
You can avoid pesticides by investing in preventive measures. Find a pest control expert that believes in tailoring solutions to the unique construction of your home, ensuring that the most efficient and effective techniques are utilized. Common approaches include the targeted application of liquid treatments as well as the installation of dry foam in wall voids.
3. Invest in Window Tinting
Invest in window tinting to lower heating costs in the winter and cooling costs in the summer. When it’s cold, such tinting keeps heat in the house, while in warmer months, the same film prevents excess heat from coming in through your windows. According to ENERGY STAR, the installation of tinted, eco-friendly windows can result in annual energy savings of up to 15 percent. What’s more, you may qualify for tax deductions if you install ENERGY STAR certified windows.
4. Freshen Up With A Coat Of Low-VOC Paint
Sometimes, all it takes to make your home feel new is a simple coat of paint. Although color may serve as your prime consideration, you also will want to think of the potential environmental impact. Consumer Reports alleges that paints manufactured with volatile organic compounds (VOC) can lead to indoor air pollution, and eventually leach into the surrounding environment through ventilation. So instead, select a low-VOC paint brand. Check out “Paint — Color Me Natural, Green & Healthy?”
Living green is a way of life! How we take care of our environment today will decide what our future will be tomorrow. We need to take care of our planet and home and give our children a healthy and safe future. What you doing to make you home eco-friendly and green your lifestyle?