Remodelling and decorating your home in an eco-friendly manner can be especially difficult if you don’t know where to start. Home renovations can often be stressful. The good news is that incorporating sustainability into your home design in both significant and subtle ways has never been easier. Making decisions about everything from paint to flooring, lighting, appliances, furniture, fabrics, and decor while keeping sustainability top of mind will simplify your choices, assist you in creating a greener home for your family, and benefit the environment.
Here are some advice from professionals and helpful links to get you started on remodelling and furnishing your home sustainably.
Install eco-friendly appliances
Consider installing water-saving low-flush toilets and low-flow facets in the bathroom. When possible, choose large equipment with the greatest efficiency ratings you can find, including washing machines, and install LED lighting, which will conserve energy and be less expensive to operate over time. Induction stoves are now regarded as superior, notably as a means of reducing the consumption of fossil fuels, whereas cooking with fossil gas was originally thought to be the greatest way to produce gourmet meals.
Additionally, heat pumps are far more effective in cooling or heating your home. When the chance arises to swap out a fossil-fuel-powered product for one that relies on electricity, seize it. Buildings that have zero carbon emissions should start with eliminating fossil fuels.
The Inflation Reduction Act, which was just passed, provides tax breaks for green initiatives including solar panel installation and the purchase of energy-efficient electrical equipment, windows, and doors.
Utilize organic materials and finishes
Give natural regeneration materials like bamboo or cork priority when choosing materials for construction, remodelling, interior design, and decor. Using natural materials, such as hemp, straw, and wood, can help improve indoor air quality and get rid of dangerous Red List chemicals found in synthetic products, according to Moore of the International Living Future Institute. Or take into account a natural clay plaster wall finish made by the British business Clay works, which combines unfired clays with minerals and natural colours to produce an eco-friendly alternative to wall paint.
Prioritize natural materials manufactured from hemp, one of the world’s most sustainable, quickly-growing ancient crops, or linen, a recyclable raw material made from zero-waste flax fibre, when it comes to textiles like curtains, upholstery, bed and table linens, etc.
For those who are more daring, a new generation of designers is producing home décor items out of cutting-edge eco-friendly materials, like lights that are grown to order out of mycelium, the eternally renewable root strands of mushrooms.
Reducing, reusing, and recycling has become a common motto among people who care about the environment. Prioritizing buying vintage and used items above new ones in everything from fashion to household goods has become more and more common. When making decisions about restoration and décor, keep this eco-friendly concept in mind.
Instead of rushing through a complete renovation if you’re a homeowner remodelling a home or flat, go through every inch of your area with an eye toward what may be kept, maintained, and restored. Peeling back the layers of previous restorations might disclose original elements like exposed brick or mill work that, with a little TLC, can give charm to the room. Old hardwood floors should be refinished rather than replaced, or if they are too damaged, you should think about painting them to give your home a Scandinavian feel.
If you’re conducting the renovation work yourself, set a goal for finding as many recycled materials as you can before you make any purchases.
Before making any new decor purchases, consider what you already have. Things should be moved. Refinish an old china cabinet and use it as a showcase for your out-of-control plant collection. You may create a rustic coffee table by shortening the legs of an antique wooden farm-style dining table. Use old curtains or that cool printed shirt you want to wear but can’t quite pull off to recover your throw pillows.
Bring the outside inside
What’s good for the planet benefits people as well, and establishing connections between indoor and outdoor areas through the use of houseplants or living walls can help us feel more connected to the natural world while simultaneously reducing energy use. Homes should encourage the human urge for biophilia, or a desire for nature, according to Moore of the International Living Future Institute.
It can be as easy as adding plants or a living wall to foster a connection between people and nature in the built environment, or it can serve as the guiding principle for brand-new homes. People who can view trees out their windows or feel linked to nature inside their homes are healthier, more productive, and happier, according to science.