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Going green with home improvements offers numerous advantages. Homeowners who take the green initiative often find that they lower their utility bills. Sources show that as recently as 2008, Americans saved over $19 billion just by making green choices at home.
While these improvements can lower household bills, you will have to pay for supplies. Use a home improvement calculator to find out how much your project will cost. If you must, make some room in your budget by cutting unnecessary expenses. Luckily, many of these home improvements will add value to your home.
Most kitchens use a lot of resources because they have so many appliances. You can chip away at your resource consumption by making some of the following renovations:
- Choose appliances appropriately sized for your needs.
- Choose ENERGY STAR appliances.
- Use sensor faucets that turn off automatically.
- Build a compost bin for kitchen refuse.
- Install a trash compactor to reduce the size of recyclables.
- Choose sustainable materials like bamboo when replacing floors, cabinets, etc.
The bedroom might not seem like a place where you can make many green improvements, but there are some options that will make your quarters environmentally friendly and more comfortable.
- Install ENERGY STAR rated windows.
- Replace incandescent light bulbs with LEDs.
- Choose window treatments that stabilize your home's temperature.
- Use recycled building materials.
- Use window films to block the sun's heat.
The Living Room
The living room gives you plenty of opportunities to make your home eco-friendly. You just have to get creative and make the right choices when remodeling.
- Install an LED television.
- Build shelves for more indoor plants.
- Replace old windows with solar windows
- Choose eco-friendly furniture.
- Relocate your living room to the basement, where it's cooler during summer.
The Laundry Room
Since most laundry rooms have washers and dryers, you automatically have plenty of ways to reduce energy usage in this area of the home.
- Choose efficient washers and dryers.
- Build an indoor clothesline so you don't need a dryer.
- Install a front-load washer.
- Swap your electric-powered dryer with a gas-powered option.
- Install a whole-house fan so you don't need to use your AC as often.
- Use solar panels to make your own sustainable energy.
- Add insulation to your attic to prevent heat-loss during winter.
- If you have room in your budget, install a tankless water heater.
- Make a rain barrel to reduce outdoor water use.
- Plant trees to lower your home's energy needs.
- Replace existing toilets with low-flow designs.
- Swap your shower head for a low-flow head.
- Build a garden that supplies your family with nutritious, organic food.
- Use a fan to draw cool air up from the basement during summer.
- Build new decks out of composite decking.
- Install geothermal heating if you live in a warm climate.
- Build a green roof.
- Use vinyl storm doors.
- Install automated thermostats.
- Install motion sensors on outdoor lights.
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