Creating a sustainable home Eco-friendly homes
Creating sustainable homes for the future is now a major part of government policy.
It mainly applies to new homes under construction, with some impact on extensions, but if you already have a building, it is still possible to work towards creating a sustainable home.
A sustainable home is one that doesn’t use anything that damages the environment during its construction or once in use.
The main target is to reduce CO2 emissions, believed to be the main cause of climate change. The truly carbon-neutral home might still be some way off, but there are ways of significantly reducing your environmental footprint whatever type of property you own.
Taking action now might also help you sell your house, now that are compulsory. Our guide to Energy Performance Certificates reveals the main parts of the certificate and how you can improve your home's rating.
A survey by the Energy Saving Trust claims buyers are willing to pay up to £10,000 more for an environmentally friendly property – people tend to prefer a house with double glazing and a boiler that's in good condition.
Cut your energy bills
A big advantage of making your home more sustainable is that while helping the planet you will also be cutting how much you spend on energy bills.
There is lots of information about how to save money, from simple steps such as fitting draught excluders around a doorframe to more extreme options – sinking bore holes in the garden for your own water supply, for example.
The energy bill savings you can make can vary from a few pounds to more than £300 per year, depending on the age and type of home you have. So it is worth exploring your options.
Apart from the benefit to your bank balance, there is a real opportunity to help protect the environment. According to the World Wildlife Fund, homes generate nearly 30% of the UK’s carbon dioxide emissions.
Another benefit of creating a sustainable home is that it needs less heating and should feel neither too stuffy nor too cold – improving air quality.
Adapting your home
Adapting your home to be more energy-efficient can be easy, without spending any money or taking much time. But some initiatives cost thousands and require substantial changes.
So you have to think carefully about to what extent you want to adapt your home to become sustainable.