Making Your Home Environmentally Friendly
There are a number of ways you can make your home environmentally friendly, from installing solar panels to using a smart meter. In this blog we cover some of the best ways to help your house be greener.
With the mounting concern for the environment culminating in the blockades and protests by groups like Extinction Rebellion splashed across the front page of every news site, it’s safe to assume that eco-consciousness is at the forefront of people’s minds. There are a number of ways you, as a home owner, can make your home more eco friendly.
Veganism and vegetarianism are on the rise with supermarkets revealing an ever-increasing demand for meat-free alternatives, and protests are lining the streets of London as thousands demand the government to bring action on climate change.
Young people are at the forefront of these movements and are doing everything in their power to live more sustainable lives. Even those who aren’t going as far as to change their eating habits or protest in the streets are still trying to reduce their carbon footprint. This includes ensuring that their homes are as eco-friendly as possible.
A study by Deloitte claims that, while energy prices are still the top concern for residential customers at 59%, “utilising clean energy sources” comes in at a close second at 56%. So, it’s clear that people want to live green lives. However, intentions are not the same as actually putting principles into practice, and financial reasons are cited as the key reason why people are slow to uptake new, energy-efficient home improvements.
If you’re interested in trying to reduce your carbon footprint and look for greener alternatives for your next home or current home, here are some things you could do:
Ways to Go Green at Home
Getting solar panels installed, or opting for a home that has solar panels, is a great way to not only reduce your carbon footprint but also save loads of money on your energy bills. Unfortunately, as of 31st March 2019, the government no longer offers solar panel incentive payments, which was when the government would pay you for generating electricity or exporting it to the grid.
This change makes it much more difficult to earn back the cost of the solar panel installation, where you’ll be looking at somewhere between 26 to 65 years to make back the investment on saved energy costs alone. However, if your goal is to reduce your carbon footprint, the return you get could mean a lot more than just money.
If you still have any single glazed windows in your home, you should update them to double or even triple glazing. According to Energy Saving Trust, you could save between £100 to £120 on your energy bills per year by updating your windows to double glazing. They help to retain the heat in your home, minimising how much is lost through the windows, so you won’t have to keep cranking up the heat to keep warm.
Manufacturing things from raw materials requires energy and resources, something which we don’t have in infinite supply. When moving into a new property, consider shopping around for used furniture before rushing down to IKEA.
Ask friends and relatives if they have anything they’d be willing to give or sell to you, check out online retailers like eBay or Facebook Marketplace, or head down to some charity furniture shops. You’ll be surprised at the fantastic quality furniture you can find when you dig around, often for incredible prices, too.
Going green means trying to use things for as long as possible, so if you have some unwanted but still useable furniture of your own, try to find it a new home rather than throwing it away.
Smart metres are a great way to find out just how much energy you’re using. You’ll gain a unique insight into how much energy different appliances use, and you’ll easily be able to develop new energy-saving habits thanks to this new perspective. Additionally, your bills will be more accurate, and you’ll be able to see precisely in pounds and pence how much you’re spending on energy.
To help retain heat and keep your energy consumption low, make sure your property is appropriately insulated. Wall cladding and roof sheets are a great way to keep your home warm, minimising energy wastage and the loss of heat.