Have you ever seen a home that is not only hideous, but is completely out of place in its environment? Maybe all the trees have been removed, the lovely little stream has been dammed and filled in, or the construction of the home is obviously inundated with synthetic materials. Of course, people have the absolute right to live in a home that pleases them. But today, an increasing number of home owners are renovating their homes in an environmentally friendly way.
The number of companies that specialize in selling renovation materials that are good for the environment is increasing. The best place to look for a company that focuses their production on green materials is either online or by asking at your local construction supply store's information desk. A green company tends to sell products that are not treated with chemicals as well as being environmentally-minded when harvesting or producing these goods. Paint has long been an item of environmental controversy, and now it can be found with no volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the mixture. Another example is that some companies now make insulation made from recycled goods like cotton or cork or even bamboo. There are hundreds if not thousands of other great environmentally friendly materials that are sure to suit your needs, whatever they are.
Wood is an important material whether you are building new or renovating your home. Green companies make sure to not disturb the environment, particularly fragile communities, when harvesting trees for lumber production. Generally any wood that is certified by the Forest Stewardship Counsel should be safe to use. Other companies are using recycled goods, like plastics and some types of woods, to create household construction items. It is even possible to have kitchen counters that are made with recycled paper, imagine that! Not only do green materials help the environment in one way or another, they are often very durable and demand less maintenance compared to traditional construction materials.
When choosing your renovation materials, you'll discover an over-abundance of traditional materials. You'll have to look a little harder to find “green" materials. Since the market for natural materials is considerably less than for traditional materials, you'll see less big-money advertising for “green" materials. You might have to do some extra internet searches, make some phone calls to merchants, and search out appropriate building supply companies to find what you're looking for. Persistence will win out, and you'll delight in ecologically safe and hypoallergenic “green" materials for all your renovation needs.
Other than using green materials there are a number of ways to make your home more environmentally sound. Skylights are a great way to use natural sunlight to brighten up a room, versus traditional lighting that sucks energy. Solar energy is another smart way to fit into the environment a bit more. For years homeowners have used solar to heat their outdoor pools, but what about inside energy? Some companies have come up with a way to integrate solar panels into the roof so that they look just like normal roofing tiles. Imagine the long term payoff of solar panels versus reduced monthly electric bills.
Using natural insulation, replacing existing windows with energy-efficient wood or dual-paned glass and using flooring options from recycled glass will go a long way in making your home environmentally friendly. Recycling materials and being able to reuse them for building materials is changing the way some of us are renovating our homes.
Being environmentally conscious and choosing “greener" alternatives for home renovation projects remain an option, but more consumers are turning towards techniques, products and supplies that could turn their homes into a showcase for environmentally-wise buildings and materials.
Danielle Stone is the Northern California Luxury Real Estate marketing director whose informative website covers El Dorado Hills real estate where you can find local area information on El Dorado Hills, Folsom, Cameron Park homes , gated equestrian communities, full access to the Sacramento California area MLS listings, and helpful information to have a successful real estate experience.