One of the biggest growing building trends in the nation is the process of building green. Whether it’s a new construction build or you’re remodeling your current home, opting for green building practice is a great choice. When you opt for green building practices, you’re not opting for sustainable building practice, but also a home you can be proud of and one that will have less of an impact on the environment in the long run. There are a lot of ways to incorporate green building practices into both a new construction or a home remodel, and here at UrbanLUX Builders, we’re always open to working with you to create a beautiful and sustainable home that you can be proud of. Consider the following six tips for remodeling green that you can put into practice with your own home when you work with us in the San Antonio area.
Question Your Scale
If you have the choice between a new construction home with 500 more square feet or staying in your current home and remodeling it, the greener option is to opt for the remodel. If your home mostly works well for you, a large-scale remodel can make it perfect. The reason remodels are a better option for green building methods over new build constructions is because the remodeling process creates less waste and uses up less material than a new construction does. In addition, while you are spending money on new materials, a large portion of what you pay will go into the demolition and remodeling labor than in materials, keeping the money supporting your local economy.
Along with trying to keep most of your money in the local economy with the paid labor that you use for your remodel, you can also opt to buy your materials from local sources. If you’re looking for flooring, opt for hardwoods that are common to the area and sustainably grown. If you’re considering tile, see if there is a local maker that you can purchase from. The more you can reduce transportation costs the better.
Along with purchasing and sourcing from local venders, you can also look into salvaged materials. Old, refinished barn wood is always a popular choice, as well as a variety of other reclaimed materials. The more you can reclaim and reuse, the less waste will come from your project. If you have the time, salvaged materials can really pack a punch. Or if you’re not interested in salvaged materials for your home, consider some interesting salvaged fixtures or furniture pieces to add interest.
Plan for the Future
If you’re sure your home is going to be your “forever home,” it’s worth thinking about what you may need in the future. Doing a single remodel is better than having to remodel again down the line and adjust for your needs as your needs change. Consider things like step heights, bathroom accessibility, and other features that could become issues as you age. If you address them now through seamless design choices, you’re going to have a much easier time adapting to your home. Things like soap dishes that double as grab bars in the bathroom, separate showers with no lip to step over, and a master bedroom space on the main level of the home are all things to consider that could be great for now and for later.
In addition to putting your future needs in the front of your mind, also consider the long-term potential of the home. If you’re making design choices now, you should think about what individuals may want later. The simple solution is to choose beautiful and classic design options that will last for generations. The fewer times a home has to be remodeled, the less will go into landfills and the less materials will be needed overall. If you opt for classic and quality, you will never have a problem selling your home in the long run and you can bet that others will appreciate the design choices you have made.
Plan for Light and Heat
One of the number one things you can do in order to make sure your home is green going forward is to address the light and heat that your home both creates and absorbs. Having energy efficient windows, proper attic ventilation, optimal insulation, and well thought out window placement can all go a long way to letting sun in when you want it to heat your home and keeping it out when you want to keep things cool. This not only reduces your energy costs, but also your energy footprint. Consider skylights as an excellent option for your needs in order to bring light into your home without the need to flip the switch. Think twice, however, before you invest in solar panels. They can be excellent green additions to your home, but they can be overly costly, when a few other changes can truly improve your light and heat usage.
Be Aware of Fumes
Whenever you have your home painted or you are caulking a bathroom, you may not think about the environmental impact of your actions. However, fumes from a wide variety of products can be dangerous to people and to the planet. Choosing low- or no-volatile organic compound products can make a difference for everyone.
When you want to do a green remodel to your San Antonio area home, opt for UrbanLUX Builders for your large-scale remodel. Contact us today for more information!