In no particular order we offer the following tips to a Sustainable Home Makeover.
1. Keep it Local
by actively seek products that are ideally manufactured locally and sold by a locally owned business.
2. No- or Low-VOC Paints
are produced with less harmful chemicals and wont make you or your family sick. Any manufacturer can color match these days, allowing quality to be your guide.
such as bamboo, cork, FSC or reclaimed harwoods, marmoleum (a non-toxic sheet material) and tile are easier to keep clean and don’t allow for build up of toxins. If you must have carpet, use a super-dense, natural wool carpet.
4. Reduce Energy Consumption
using Energy Star® certified appliances to save you money in the long-term through reduced energy use, and often in the short-term as well through rebates via city, state and federal programs. Use “smart” powerstrips with master controls. Deep Green: Swap out your heat for innovative solutions and then offset with solar!
5. Use Water Sense®
certified fixtures which reduce water consumption without compromising water pressure. It’s functional, good for the planet, and your pocketbook. Put a hot water timer on your hot water tanks or swap out for a heat pump one.
6. Clean Green
homemade cleaning solutions create a healthy living space and save money. All-purpose cleaners, soft scrubs and natural disinfectant sprays are really easy to make and are super cost-effective. You can find lots of great recipes for creating natural cleaners at home, like these ones here.
7. Salvaged Building Materials
are sustainable, cost-effective, and unique solutions to home improvement! Your friends and family will ooh and ahh when they learn the story of your salvaged materials.
8. Batten Down the Hatches
with insulation and sealant. Don’t forget above your can lights and behind exterior wall outlets.
9. Abide by the Three R’s
REDUCE your consumption. REUSE what you can. RECYCLE the rest.
10. Educate Yourself and Make Mindful Decisions
You do not necessarily need radical change to make a radical shift in how you live, play, and grow in your home. Take a breath, think, and move forward sustainably.