Things to Look for When Evaluating a Home’s Sustainability

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What does a Sustainable Home constitute?

A sustainable home constitutes every aspect of building a house. It is an efficient home that is built in such a way that respects resources, optimizes energy and water use and it counts on the land and the design of the house. It includes the impact of the house on the environment in which it exists. A sustainable home uses low-impact, high-performance materials.

Location of the Building

 Location is the most important thing as far as sustainability of a home is concerned. If the home is in a high-density area, it will be part of a more efficient community where people, products and utilities don’t have to travel very far to reach their destination. Another factor that counts in sustainability is the easy accessibility of the house to transportation which in turn depends on the location of the house. If a person can walk, bike or take public transportation, he’ll be able to reduce the carbon footprint over all the he will live in that home.

Energy compliant design, direction and energy usage in running

The way a house is designed will determine how much energy is required to keep the inmates comfortable – particularly from the perspective of the indoor climate. A well designed home will make good use of heat from the sun to warm the house when needed and adequate shading to keep the house cool when the weather is warmer. The house’s general direction and which parts are faced towards the sun makes all the difference. Access to solar energy counts a lot when it comes to heating and cooling efficiency because air conditioning can be seriously energy-intensive if a house isn’t designed to make best use of natural warmth and shade. Proper floor plans ensure optimum air movement as they reduce the number of walls that are required enabling better ventilation. Good ventilation brings fresh air into the house and prevents the buildup of pollutants. Air filters, exhaust fans and chimneys should all be in good working order to ensure that the air quality is high.

Use of proper building materials

Recycled, re-claimed and re-purposed materials like wood, aluminum, stone, glass and bricks add to the sustainability of a house. Nowadays a lot of builders use energy-efficient materials to recycle up to 80% of the materials in a house.

Green landscaping

Green landscaping—also known as sustainable or eco-landscaping—is a method to design, create, and maintain the landscape to save time, money, and energy. Green landscapes nurture wildlife; reduce air, soil, and water pollution and make healthy recreation spaces. Trees and plants positively impact our environment; they not only produce oxygen and cleans our air, they also reduce temperatures and storm water pollutants. Good Landscapting also positively impacts people’s health and emotional well-being.

 Invest for the Long Run

If a person is keen to have some real upgrades to make his home really sustainable, he can install solar panels if the house has good sun exposure and reduce the usage of electricity from the grid. In fact, building and maintaining a ‘sustainable’ home might cost a bit more but in the long term, savings in operational costs, energy independence, and resale value are likely to far outweigh the extra expense of building a home with sustainability in mind.

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