Category: Green House

Green Living Tips

Going green is easier than you think. We all have to do our small part, and by following a few simple life changes, our little part can make a world of difference. Going green certainly benefits everyone, but it also has immediate rewards that can save you hundreds of dollars a year.

1. Reduce Your Cooking Time.

Sometimes the oven is the only way to go for preparing your favorite meal, however, the energy consumption can be cut back by using a smaller counter top oven for light usage. Use the compact oven when cooking for one or two persons, and be sure to reheat leftovers with an economical source.

2. Cold Water Washes.

The washing instructions on garments, rugs, towels and such may prefer that you use a hot water setting on your washing machine. However, many items with normal soiling come out beautifully with a cold water rinse, and you save big bucks on your water heating bill. In cases of heavy soil and stubborn stains, you may need to revert back to filling your machine with hot water. In addition, when doing a light laundry load, be sure to set the dial for a small load or mini basket for optimal savings on your water bill.

3. Thermostat Control.

Most people find 68 degrees to be comfortable at night when proper bedding is used to insulate the body heat. Try a goose down comforter, thermal pajamas and wearing bed socks at night. Traditional socks may pose a problem with cutting off circulation, so be sure the socks are nice and loose. Also be sure that your doors and windows are weather stripped to keep your heating bill to a minimum.

4. Shower vs. Bathtub.

A nice bubble bath may sound appealing, but you are emptying gallon upon gallon of hot water into just one bathing. To lower your water bill, have a shower instead, which not only gets you cleaner faster, but gives you more control as to how much water you wish to use. To economize even further, turn the water off when washing your hair or lathering up for scrub. A good long soak may be a luxury once and a while, but for daily grooming and maintenance, a quick shower will do.

5. Lights Off.

It’s common sense to turn off a light when its not in use, but how many of us put that into practice? We wander from room to room with little attention paid to lights and other electrical fixtures not in use. The best way to get into the habit of switching off the lights is to put up a sticky note to remind you. After a few weeks, it will be old hat, and you will have saved a lot of dough on your energy bill. It was said that even Queen Elizabeth of England is a stickler for turning off unused electricity at Buckingham Palace. So take care of your own castle and turn off the lights.

6. Shut Down The Computer.

The computer at your home or office should be shut down at night to reduce the monthly energy bill. In addition, if the computer is not going to be used for a few hours, it costs less to power up for a few minutes than to let it run unattended.

7. Fuel Efficient Driving.

To cut back on the usage of fuel, it is wise to have a game plan when running errands. Rather than driving aimlessly, try to organize your driving schedule to make the best mileage for the trip. Devising a route to eliminate back tracking helps a great deal to reduce your fuel expenses, keeps the air cleaner and reduces your carbon footprint.

8. Water Purifiers.

Rather than buying water in plastic containers, you may opt for a water purifying system hooked up to your kitchen sink. Once a costly endeavor, the home water purifiers are now high tech and available for a modest price. Not only do you save on bottled water, the planet is spared another indestructible plastic object to be hauled away out of sight.

9. Leave the Car in the Garage.

If you are just going to make a quick trip, try waking or biking rather than starting up the car. Our society is programmed to believe we need a vehicle every time we leave our property. Nonsense. If your post office is around the corner, the walk will do you good and reduce your carbon footprint. Walking is heart smart and opens up the capillaries for clear and beautiful skin. A little physical activity feels good, costs you nothing, so why not give it a try?

10. Going Paperless.

Eliminating the paper trail does wonders for lowering the energy costs that it takes to cut down a tree, process the pulp and make a piece of paper. If you are ordering from a catalog, ask them to discontinue your hard copy catalog and send you email newsletters instead. Ordering online is fast, efficient and often has better bargains than in-store merchandise. You may also pay your bills online, store your records, and come up with your own creative ideas to cut down on paper products.

Interesting Tips to Make Your Home Green

If your sky-rocketing utility bills are upsetting you, then it is high time to make your house more energy-efficient. In the last decade, home improvement sector has evidently exploded with environment friendly practices and products, which guarantee to save homeowners a lot of money in the electricity bills. These green products are basically made from sustainable or recycled materials that last longer, in comparison to their conventional counterparts. However, with so many green products available in the market, it is not easy for the homeowners to make right choices. Considering this fact, given below are some interesting tips on how you can make your home green.

* Evaluate insulation and siding – A significant aspect of green lifestyle is decreasing one’s carbon footprint. This can be done by using lesser energy in various parts of the house. One great way to decrease energy consumption is to make sure that your house is properly insulated. Using eco-friendly or green insulation, made from materials like wool, cotton, recycled fabrics such as soybeans, denim etc, is a great way to go. Besides, evaluate the outdoor siding of your house by poking the walls. If your house is old and needs a face lift, then go for green products, such as fiber-cement siding, insulated-vinyl siding etc. Both would last for several years and need no or very less maintenance.

* Improve air quality inside the house – People living in environment friendly houses with better quality of air are happier, healthier and smarter. One great way to improve air quality inside your house is using low or zero VOC paints. These are easily available at any home improvement store at almost same price as traditional paints. Besides, the type of flooring you have also determines the air quality in your house. Traditional carpets, over time, trap allergens, mold, pet dander, and dust mites, making it difficult to get rid of them. The worst it does is deteriorating the quality of air inside the house. The best way to deal with this issue is either choosing environment friendly carpets with no or low VOCs or go for the hard floors fabricated from materials, like bamboo, cork, hardwood etc.

* Update the dated appliances – A kitchen loaded with high-end stainless steel machines and appliances looks beautiful, but functionality and practicality is more crucial to consider. Kitchen appliances, like stove, dishwasher and refrigerator use high amount of energy. It is therefore best to replace older appliances with the new ones, having energy star ratings.

* Window or door replacement – Those who have an old house with drafty doors and windows, a window or door replacement project would definitely be a great idea. It can actually make a great impact on your energy bills. While shopping for the new doors or windows, go for top quality products, such as Energy Star labeled windows, which use recycled materials or sustainable woods, and triple-pane windows/doors, which would keep your home comfortable year-round.

Remember remodeling a house is not about spending a lot of money. Even with small changes you can create a significant impact. So, employ all these interesting tips and get set to make your house a healthier and happier place to reside.

Tips on Buying and Looking For a Green Home

Green homes are all the rage now. Some places in the country are hopping on the “green” band wagon much faster than other but it is still on the rise. The drawback is though, that green homes tend to cost much more upfront because of the amount of labor and resources that go into the production of the home. But the outcome for years to come are much lower heating and cooling bills, electricity bill and and overall sense of good conscience when it comes to the environment.

If you are not in the financial position to custom design a green home, you might consider at least making a check list of items to look for when shopping for a home. Here are some items to look for:

1. Double Pane Windows – This may be common in most homes these days but it still something to be aware of. Even triple pane can save you energy. The most the heat or cool air can be kept in or out where it’s suppose to be, the better it is on your bill. Also, the energy that is burning is not nearly as heavy as with a home that is working overtime to keep the temperature where you want it in the home year round.

2. Extra Insulation – Each state has their own regulations as far as what is code when it comes to insulation. Check with the local zoning and permit laws and if the home doubles this requirement, you are pretty set as far as keeping energy expenses and usage down. This goes for insulation in the walls, attic and floor. If the home has a crawl space that is not insulated, there maybe extra cool air coming in from outside and penetrating the floor in the winter. The attic heats ups tremendously in the summer months and keeping a thick layer of insulation between the ceiling and the top of the insulation can benefit your bill greatly by keeping hot air in the attic or ventilated properly with attic fans and vents.

3. Solar Panels – This is something most homes don’t have and you are more likely to see them in the south where there is more of an abundance of sunny days. This is something that can almost minimize your electricity bill to nothing if used properly. Check into the local hardware shops for different options.

4. Light Bulbs – This is something anyone can do but the compact fluorescent light bulbs are about 90% light and only about 10% heat where a regular bulb is about 90% heat and 10% light. That heat is your dollars going toward your electricity bill. By replacing all the bulbs in your house you can save hundreds each year on electricity.

5. Energy Star Appliances – Check to make sure the appliances are up to date and highest efficiency. This goes for furnaces, water heaters, air conditioners and all kitchen appliances. This can great reduce emissions and cost on your bill.

How Green Home Renovations Can Add To The Value Of Your Property

Selling a house has never been as tough as it is today. Real estate analysts now suggest that today’s market is as troubling as what was experienced during the Great Depression. Experts suggest that this year’s sales will be down more than thirty per cent as compared to ten years ago. With house prices plummeting and the market stagnating, if you are looking to sell your home it is important to give it an edge over other properties.

You can almost instantly make your home a more desirable proposition through quick and energy efficient green renovations. These modifications can dramatically reduce energy bills, minimize water usage, improve the indoor air quality, and bring down the building’s overall carbon footprint. With issues such as climate change and global warming filling news bulletins, more people are interested in buying a green home.

With the market flooded with properties, those individuals and families who are planning to make a purchase are looking for added value. There are two types of real estate that get snapped up fast, those that have a great price and the buildings that have desirable extras and modifications. Smart eco-friendly alterations can ensure that your current home is not left on the market for too long.

The most obvious way to green your property is to make it more energy-efficient. You should do more than just add a few photovoltaic panels to the roof structure or enlarge the windows to let in more ambient light. To make your home seem a desirable buy, you should document how your modifications have impacted on utility bills. By providing a comparison of your bills and those of regular houses in your area you can highlight it’s attraction.

Upgrading energy intensive appliances with more efficient models does pay off. So would installing a programmable smart thermostat to control heating and cooling, and motion detectors to trigger your home’s lights. Updating the building’s insulation can also reduce running costs in a massive way.

Going green does help sell a home. If you are concerned about the outlay that would be involved with making eco-friendly modifications, check out what online home loans are available to help offset the cost. Any money that you invest can be recouped by increasing your asking price when placing the property on the market. You can have an attractive return on investment and be proud to lessen the impact on the environment.