The 40th Anniversary of Earth Day is on April 22nd. A great way to celebrate is to go "green", this doesn’t have to be “weird or ugly or futuristic”, or even expensive. Appealing aesthetics in green design are in fact a sustainability achievement. Homes and buildings that appeal to everyone endure They endure for many years through design trends, market cycles and numerous homeowners.
Some important features are: high performance windows, energy efficacies heating system, low-flow toilets and durable composite decking for porches.
When building using the following concepts can assist you to achieve a greener home: site selection and use, local and regional goals, sustainable orientation of the building on the site, storm water management.
Here are a few easy low cost ideas to implement in your home to start a “greener” life:
• Use CFL or LED light bulbs.
• Install low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators.
• Start a compost pile.
• Plant Trees.
• Insulate hot water heater.
• Weather strip and caulk doors and windows.
• Collect rainwater to water plants.
• Paint with low or no VOC paint.
• Replace filters.
• Install a programmable thermostat.
• Plant a rain garden.
• Plant native plants.
• Place appliances or office equipment on power strips to reduce “phantom” load.
• Install motioned sensors in common areas to turn off lights when no in use.
• Install water efficient restroom fixtures.
• Take advantage of day lighting.
• Provide recycling bins.
There has been a lot of talk lately about reducing our ecological footprint sometimes called "carbon footprint". This is a site that measures that footprint: Walkability Score: http://www.walkscore.com/. The following is a list of more great websites to look up “green” living ideas:
To actually see and feel some of the latest in green living attend the home show this weekend at the Big E there are plenty of opportunities to “green up” your home. There is a big push towards sustainability. This is a great opportunity to actually see all the new innovative products that are being talked about. There will be building industry experts to explain about these products and possible tax credits. There will also be some interactive booths with touch screens to show how the products are made.
The Home Show March 25th – March 28th. For more information and coupons go to http://www.westernmasshomeshow.com/.
To read about a local example of green building in our area follow this link:
A Sturbridge house built with geothermal heating, passive solar use, energy efficient spray insulation, radiant floor heating, high energy efficient windows, recycled decking, Energy Star appliances, energy efficient gas fireplaces and more.
If you are looking for something interesting to do this weekend and have been thinking of “greening up” your home, renovating, upgrading your appliances, improving your heating or cooling system this is the place to go.
If you have any ideas or would like to add anything I welcome your comments.
Moira Murphy, ABR, Green
Residential Real Estate Agent
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage
Tel: Direct: 413.575.3643