Building Sustainable Housing
Sustainability defines how we’re going to leave lasting legacies for future generations to enjoy. It involves adopting measures that allow for better environmental protection, less waste, and affordability.
In recent years, developers are looking towards sustainable housing which costs less and entails a lesser environmental impact. This has also promoted the adoption of new construction technologies. Added to this is a shift towards several key factors when it comes to developing new more affordable and efficient homes.
Minimal energy consumption
Building materials should be manufactured with proper insulation and homes should be outfitted with advanced heating systems. Energy efficiency will be the hallmark of sustainability and people are looking towards homes that could benefit from solar and wind installations and other forms of renewable energy.
Design concepts should ensure the maximization of available resources. This would involve new systems that recycle old materials and reduce waste. The principle behind sustainability, after all, is ensuring that every material could be used time and again. Along these lines, lean construction will also be underscored to better allocate resources and determine the most suitable materials to use – often involving waste products. One such example of the utilization of waste for sustainability is the UK’s Waste House, which is constructed from 90 percent household and construction waste.
In terms of energy-efficiency, prefabricated homes have a more compelling advantage compared to homes that are built from the ground up. Durability is also an important benefit that such homes provide. And considering that they can be assembled onsite, homes built from prefabricated materials would pave the way towards a more sustainable future.
Location and size
It matters if you are able to find a suitable site that provides easy access to public utilities and, thus, reduce your carbon footprint by not relying too much on your car. Finding the right location also means avoiding floodplains and other hazard areas. The size of your home is also an important consideration since smaller homes cost less to cool and heat. They even cost less to maintain and produce less waste, making them an ideal form of sustainable housing.
Home appliances consume a lot of energy, especially if these have been around for more than ten years. With new innovations in-home technology, homeowners can choose to replace their current appliances with those that are Energy Star-rated. This ensures that your appliances won’t cost you too much in terms of monthly utility bills.
Aside from energy, water conservation is also an important subject in sustainable housing. Sure enough, this would involve the installation and maintenance of water-saving plumbing systems such as opting for low-flush toilets or low-pressure showerheads. But a more interesting innovation in water-saving technology is collecting and using rainwater for your irrigation system or for flushing toilets. Also known as rainwater harvesting, this method involves collecting rainwater that falls on the roof of the house into an underground reservoir which could then be accessed for household purposes.
Sustainable housing will define homeowner preferences for the years to come. As awareness of environmental protection becomes even more profound, people will have to make smarter decisions that positively impact the way they live.