Your home is your castle, your own little bit of paradise set aside from where the rest of the world, where you can set things up exactly the way you want them to be — or at least, you can get started on doing that. It’ll likely be an ongoing work in progress.
One thing that many people wish for their homes, however, especially in a time where environmental issues are so close to so many of our hearts, is to design a home that’s as environmentally friendly as possible.
As an added benefit, many environmentally friendly homes are also more cost-effective in the long run, and allow for a more autonomous style of living, than conventional homes.
So, here are a few tips to help you make your home more environmentally friendly.
Install a heat pump
Homes have traditionally been warmed by furnaces and boilers, which involve burning some type of fuel to generate heat for the home.
By contrast, a heat pump is a more “Zen” sort of a system. A heat pump works by moving pre-existing heat, or thermal energy, from a place where it’s not needed or desired, to a place where it is needed or desired.
As heat pumps don’t involve the combustion of any fuel, they are far cheaper to run than more conventional systems. They are also more environmentally friendly, as they work on using what’s already there in the most efficient manner possible.
If you have a heat pump installed, be sure to keep a record of who to contact for regular heat pump repair and inspection. As these are more specialist devices, you may find that not everyone who deals with boilers can repair them adequately.
Try your hand at a bit of homesteading and grow some of your own vegetables
There are currently many popular campaigns around the world, focused on the reduction of plastic waste in the food industry, and in our individual food and lifestyle habits.
Even better than buying food with minimal plastic packaging, however, is growing and producing as much of your own food as possible. By doing this, you significantly reduce your carbon footprint, you eat “local” in the most literal and direct sense, and you aren’t as dependent on an industry who might have common practices that you find objectionable.
Try to reduce your reliance on externally generated electricity
Simply powering all the gadgets and appliances that you likely depend on to sustain a 21st Century style of living, is likely to not only be quite expensive over time but also to place significant demands on the environment and local infrastructure, when all is taken into account.
One of the most eco-friendly things you can do for your home is to find ways to reduce your reliance on externally generated electricity.
This could be as simple as switching off and unplugging your appliances when they’re not in use, or it could involve installing your own solar panels or — depending on the part of the world you live in and the logistics of doing so — even implementing systems to generate electricity via hydroelectric or geothermal means.