Green Home Construction

Green Home Construction Considerations

Green home building entails increasing a home's efficiency while simultaneously reducing its environmental impact. Green building makes sense not just from an environmental standpoint but from an economic one, as well. Not only will you save money on home utility costs, many areas offer tax incentives for building green.

The actual positioning or orientation of a home can have an enormous impact on in terms of green construction. A southerly facing home with good exposure to the sun and proper shading can cut back on heating, cooling and lighting costs tremendously. Not only will the sun heat the home in the winter, it will provide natural light to majority of the interior. And strategically placed trees and awnings not only protect the home from heat during the summer, they can also shade air conditioning units for greater efficiency.

Size is another factor - the smaller the better. This doesn't have to mean living in cramped quarters. Rather, it involves maximizing available space and using only as much room as you need. This leads to a decrease in heating and cooling costs, water usage and building materials.

Building materials themselves are a major aspect of green construction. There are more and more recycled materials that offer the same beauty and longevity as their first-run counterparts. Salvaged materials from other homes, such as tiles, can be employed, as well. Using local materials will cut down on wasted energy in their transportation.

Wood used for construction should be renewable, like bamboo, or harvested from sustainable forests. Materials like paint and insulation should be non-toxic and include recycled elements, if possible.

A green home can generate its own energy, through solar, wind and water power. Solar power is especially useful in water heating and powering outdoor lighting. All appliances, windows and doors in a green home should be Energy Star rated.

Water conservation can be achieved through a variety of means, including low-flow fixtures, rainwater collection for outdoor watering and choosing hardy plants that don't require a great deal of watering.

Green living doesn't necessarily mean residing in an earthen hut with no modern amenities. It stands for getting the most out of what you use while doing your part to preserve precious natural resources for future generations. And it means saving money while you do it.