Living “green” these days doesn’t stop with recycling your plastics and composting your kitchen scraps. Environmentally friendly houses are popping up everywhere as people work to both decrease their eco-footprints and save energy. Builders and developer are moving towards use renewable, sustainable resources to meet the demand for more environmentally friendly houses. And green architects are designing do-it-yourself kits for the ultimate enthusiasts to build their own environmentally friendly houses.
The number one benefit of environmentally friendly houses that catches the eye of not just the eco-savy is the long term cost saving that comes with cutting energy and water use and finding alternative sources. Most major cities have green environmentally friendly housing developments.
If you are willing to live in a small space these environmentally friendly houses can be affordable. However, the upfront cost can add up quickly depending on the size of the environmentally friendly houses. The savings start showing when you get your first electricity bill.
Even if you are not ready to spend the money necessary for completely environmentally friendly houses, there are ways to make your current home green. Most people already know that changing your light bulbs to florescent uses 75% less energy. But that’s not the only simple change to make, if you want to live green. Try these five other things to save energy and reduce your carbon footprint:
Replace your windows with double paned glass. This is a mainstay of environmentally friendly houses. Without properly insulated windows, you are constantly losing heat or cold through the glass and cracks around the edges. There is some cost associated with the environmentally friendly retrofit, but you will soon find it takes less energy to heat or cool your home. While your at it, also add window tinting to reduce sun glare and cooling costs.
Consider solar panels installation. When most people think of environmentally friendly houses, they think solar. If you live somewhere with lots of sun, that’s free energy waiting for you to collect, with out using up fossil fuels. Solar panels can also be costly, but look in your area for used panels. They might be quite a bargain.
Install low flow shower heads. Another mainstay in environmentally friendly houses, these are fairly inexpensive and can be found at almost any hardware store. Save more by doing the installation yourself. Instructions should come with the shower heads.
Use power strips. Even when they are turned off computer equipment and entertainment centers will continue to draw power while plugged in. Instead, turn off the power strip and stop the energy drain. If you are like most people, you probably already have one or two of these sitting around just waiting to be used.
Use a motion detector for outside lights. Having outside lights at night is important for safety, but they can be a huge drain on energy if left on all night. A motion detector makes sure lights are only on when they are needed. This is another device that is low cost and easy to install.
Environmentally friendly houses are not only good for the ecosystem but can be for your wallet too. It’s easy to jump on the bandwagon even if your not investing in a new green housing development or the latest environmentally friendly houses kit. Just remember that some cost upfront, mean long term savings on your electricity bill and for the environment.