Combining beauty, efficiency, comfort and convenience, a “green” remodeling job will leave homeowners with an aesthetically pleasing, environmentally friendly house. While the overall goal of green remodeling is to conserve and protect natural resources, the benefits of the technologies used in every project will do the same for owners’ pocketbooks in the long run. That’s because remodeling your home to become environmentally friendly will not only make families healthier but save money in a variety of other ways.
Here are some money-saving tips that you can incorporate into your home remodeling project, which will not only help you but Mother Earth as well.
- 1. Refrain from using artificial lighting.
The placement of sources of natural light is another thing to consider when remodeling. Much of the need for artificial, electrical lighting may be avoided if walls and windows are strategically placed to optimize natural light.
- 2. Purchase energy-efficient appliances; estimate home electronic energy use.
In green remodels, energy- and water-wise designs and products are typically one of the first changes considered. Using low-flow shower heads, dual-flow toilets and high-efficiency water heaters use less water and energy, thereby lessening the impact on the environment while saving homeowners money on monthly utility bills.
Green remodeling also forces homeowners to assess their own needs instead of opting for items that they cannot use efficiently. For example, homeowners should consider how often they use a dishwasher before selecting a new model. That’s because dishwashers operate most efficiently when they’re full. So, if your dishwasher is consistently operated when only half-full, consider a smaller model that will best suit your needs and save money on water and electrical bills. Additionally, think about energy efficiency before purchasing a new refrigerator. For the most part, models with the freezer on the top use up to 25 percent less energy than side-by-side models.
- 3. Use faucets that help you save on your water consumption.
Not only should faucets be durable and stylish, they should also be water-conserving. All kitchen faucets must meet minimum standards for water efficiency, using no more than two-and-a-half gallons per minute (GPM). The nozzle should be marked with the model’s GPM. Efficient nozzles save both water and the energy used to heat them by reducing the flow. Kitchen nozzles should use no more than two gallons per minute.
In the marketplace today, some smartly designed nozzles include a small lever that allows you to reduce the water flow to a trickle while soaping hands or between rinses. This feature saves even more water while keeping you from having to readjust the temperature every time the faucet is turned on.
More Good News for Green Remodeling Advocates
It’s not only homeowners who have recognized the value of green remodels. Mortgage lenders are now giving homeowners who opt for green remodeling projects more borrowing privileges. Through a program called Mortgage Options for Resource Efficiency, homeowners can add up to $4,000 to a mortgage for changes to their homes that save energy or water. Savings realized from having a more efficient home will more than cover the incremental addition to a mortgage payment, which means the improvements will pay for themselves and then some.
While a green remodel requires more upfront planning to capture all possibilities for installing environmentally efficient options, the long-term benefits both to the environment and to the homeowner’s bank account are innumerable. Before beginning a green remodel, look for a contractor who has experience in this specific type of construction.
Brian Potter is a Marketing Lead at HandyPro – Atlanta Handyman and Home Repair Services providing all types of contracting and handyman services for residential and commercial clients. Our professional handymen are highly trained to handle all your repair and improvement needs including home modifications for seniors and disabled.