There are many things that you can do on a daily basis to minimize your carbon footprint, from drinking out of reusable water bottles to carpooling and everything in-between. However, it is also important to consider your environmental impact when planning a major project like a home remodel. Every choice that you make will ultimately lead back to how you affect the world around you, and thus you ideally want to keep your project green and clean.
How to keep your renovation “green”
Whether you are remodeling a single room or your entire house, there are multiple things that you can do to “reduce, reuse, recycle.” The following are a few ways that you can integrate this concept into your home renovation with minimum effort yet maximum results:
- Prior to demolishing the entire space, consider which items you can “recycle” when building it anew. Items such as kitchen cabinets, lighting fixtures or even individual bathroom tiles can be implemented in the new design. Every item that you repurpose, even if it is not made from environmentally friendly materials, does not contribute to increasing your carbon footprint yet does contribute to lowering the costs of the overall project.
- Look into recycled materials for your countertops and flooring. Two innovative options include reclaimed wood, generally taken from historic buildings to be used in flooring, and recycled glass – a blend of glass and post-consumer materials to be used in countertops. Each repurposed material has its own unique qualities, including the ability to add a touch of elegance to any room.
- Think water conservation. Installing low-pressure faucets and showerheads is one of the simplest green alternatives, yet it can make a major difference in the long-term. Also, opt for the single sink in your bathroom rather than the “his-and-hers” sinks that use double the amount of water every day.
- Consider installing solar panels and skylights to maximize your use of sunlight. Each options has its own distinct benefits in providing a sustainable supply of energy and natural lighting for your home, year-round. Did you know these alternative energy sources can also increase your property’s value?
- Avoid materials with formaldehyde, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE’s), and other volatile organic compounds (VOC’s). Materials such as pressed wood and certain brands of paint, as well as some bedding, emit harmful fumes that can cause headaches and dizziness, making them highly toxic for your home as well as the overall environment.
- For the finishing touch, consider pre-owned – and pre-loved – interior decorating options. There are many second-hand stores across the GTA where you can purchase anything from tables and chairs to paintings and area rugs, creating a unique blend of furnishings and décor that reflects your personality at a fraction of the cost of buying new.
Remember: Incorporating environmentally friendly options into your home remodel requires a certain amount of creativity, which may in fact make the project more fun in addition to being more energy efficient. For more ideas from your local experts and/or help with making these ideas a reality, contact us at Norseman Construction & Development today!