Living in a Green Home
What is a green home? A green home is a house designed to be environment-friendly. They efficiently use their resources to create positive impacts on the planet. Green homes are overall a healthier place to live compared to the average house. They use less water and energy, promoting environmental sustainability.
What do “green homes” have that other homes don’t?
Most green homes are LEED-certified. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. They are a program responsible for assisting homes and buildings, making them more environmentally sustainable. LEED provides the guidelines to make the construction and renovations of buildings and homes more environmentally responsible.
Green homes are also made out of recycled, sustainable building materials. Some materials used are bamboo, stone, insulated concrete forms, straw bale, cordwood, and fiberglass. These options are durable and environment-friendly. Insulated concrete forms, for example, are fire resistant and provide good thermal and insulation capabilities. Another example is cordwood. Cordwood is strong, good for the environment, and accessible. Another plus side is that they are aesthetic.
Why would we want to make our homes greener/ have a green home?
There are many benefits to having a green home, not just for the environment but for you also. Living in a green home lowers the cost of utility bills, enhances health, and reduces water/air pollution. It also generates less waste, protects plants and animals, and reduces your carbon footprint.
Also, most LEED-certified homes do not cost more than non-green homes. They can be cheaper, and the residents often end up paying less in bills throughout the years.
Living eco-friendly is a great thing to do for the planet. Take the steps to slowly turn your home greener!
How to have a green home without really having a “green home”
Most of us do not have a “green home”. However, we can slowly turn our homes to be more green! Your home doesn’t have to be made out of bamboo or have plants at every corner of your property just to be classified as “green”. A “green home” goes beyond a home’s construction. You can start making your home more environmentally friendly by just educating and then modifying.
Here’s an example. You learn taking smaller showers is good for the environment- it saves water and energy. Next time you shower, you apply what you just learned, and take a shorter shower. Whether it be a minute less or fifteen minutes less, you are making an active decision to positively change the way you think. Your decisions are more environment friendly, which in return makes your home greener.
Here’s another example: You have a big family and shorter showers are hard to balance. Perhaps, you can go outside and garden! Take your family members and plant one tree/flower each. The Earth will thank you.
Your mind is your home. If you choose, you can get a “green” kitchen or an insulation system that is pro-environment and healthy. Environment-friendly construction is both good for the Earth and for you. However, to make your home truly “green”, it must start with you. You should make your mind think about the health of both you and our planet.
The Future of Green Homes
Are “green” homes going to be the future? Will they be the new normal? I hope so. The projected market for green homes in the future remains in the trillions. USGBC says there is a rapid rise in green buildings, spreading to tens of other countries. More buildings are getting LEED-certified, which has now become an expectation. With people more aware of the effects of climate change, green homes will be the future.
"23 Different Green Building Materials". The Constructor, 2018, https://theconstructor.org/building/green-building-materials/7028/. Accessed 18 May 2021.
Benjamin, Heather. "Green Homes 101 | Green Home Guide". Greenhomeguide, 2021, https://www.greenhomeguide.com/know-how/article/green-homes-101. Accessed 18 May 2021.
"Green Building 101: What Is LEED?". United States Green Building Council, https://www.usgbc.org/articles/green-building-101-what-leed. Accessed 18 May 2021.