Sustainability is necessary in conserving the environment, and more homeowners and designers are taking this into account when planning their homes. Whether you are designing for a new home or remodelling your living space, there are many ways to make your design more eco-friendly. Here are some of the elements you may consider for a greener home.
Maximising the amount of natural light that goes into your space does not only brighten up the home naturally, it also allows you to cut down on energy costs, such as heating and lighting. Natural light is also found to have a positive impact on a person’s mood, emotions and behaviour, and can even alleviate depression.
Window orientation is key to letting the most amount of natural light into your home. But do not forget to install light diffusers, like window tints and blinds, so you can control the light when it gets too warm and bright. Having light-coloured furnishings would also improve the effect of natural light in your home.
Wood or stone flooring
Most synthetic floor coverings might contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), especially new carpeting and vinyl flooring, which include toxic chemicals that pose a lot of health risks. These synthetic floor coverings are usually non-biodegradable too, so throwing them away when it is time to replace them would be harmful for the environment.
Instead of using synthetic flooring, you can install wood or stone flooring in your home. These materials are naturally sourced and do not have adverse health effects. Although they can be a bit more expensive to buy and install, stone and wood flooring last longer than their synthetic counterparts and are easier to clean and maintain. This is also a much better option if you have pets or allergy concerns, such as carpet allergy.
Recycled and re-purposed materials
Recycling is essential in any effort at sustainability. Since recycled and repurposed materials make use of existing medium, producing them would not require the taking of new raw materials from natural resources.
There are a lot of manufacturers that convert recycled materials to furnishings and building materials, but you may also choose to do this yourself. If you want to have a rustic recycled door, for example, you may repurpose old doors or wooden boards to make a sliding barn door, and will only need to buy some sliding barn door hardware to install it.
Bring the outdoors into your home by having indoor plants in your space. They can freshen up your place and clear the air of toxins. Like natural light, houseplants may improve your mood and lower your risk of contracting illnesses.
You can accentuate your space with plants in many ways. You may hang them from the ceiling, mount them on walls, or put them in planters on the floor, tables and windowsills. Note that houseplants should be easy to maintain, like succulents, ficus, aloe vera, dracaena and fig.
Traditionally, luxury interior design does not put much emphasis on sustainability, but the increasing awareness about environmental problems is changing that. However, helping the environment is not the sole benefit of a sustainable interior design. You are also creating a healthier — and possibly more cost-efficient — living space for you and your family.