Each year, homeowners seek new and improved ways to boost curb appeal and implement home design principles that improve home aesthetics and efficiency for the benefit of their household and the Earth. For those committed to reducing their carbon footprint, change starts at home! There are many reasons to incorporate sustainability into your home, whether you’re planning a home addition project for your current residence, dreaming of a full-scale home renovation on an older home, or simply seeking home remodeling ideas to make your living space greener.

Eco-friendly homes reduce the environmental impact of their inhabitants, offer many financial perks, and improve home comfort. What’s more, eco-friendly homes can sell faster than those without sustainable features. Here, Quality DesignWorks design-build pros share the top seven eco-friendly ways to renovate your home. Achieve the sustainable home of your dreams with our Gainesville, FL, home remodeling experts. Contact us today to book a showroom appointment and get started crafting your eco-friendly oasis!

Boost Your Home’s Insulation

Committing to sustainable practices in your home is admirable, but your eco-friendly efforts may prove ineffective without adequate infrastructure. One of the best ways to renovate your home for sustainability is to boost your home’s insulation. Insulation is critical for any eco-friendly remodel. According to the United States Department of Energy, heating and cooling account for up to 70% of the energy used in a home, and energy loss due to inadequate insulation is the leading cause of energy waste in the majority of homes.

Whether you’re living in an older home or planning an addition to your home, ensuring adequate insulation is key to ensuring your household uses energy efficiently and reducing energy costs. Our Gainesville, FL, remodeling experts can ensure that all major openings in your home are thoroughly insulated and provide sustainable recommendations for insulation upgrades.

Install Energy-Efficient Windows

On the topic of insulation, windows that lack a proper seal or those that are damaged or extremely old can tank your eco-friendly home efforts. In fact, windows are among the biggest culprits behind energy loss in residential structures. Our home renovation contractors can help you remediate this by swapping out old, inefficient windows with energy-efficient windows, reducing your heating and cooling costs.

Keeping your home well-insulated can also reduce your carbon footprint by reducing the amount of energy required to keep your home air-conditioned or heated throughout the year. Triple-pane windows are favored for energy efficiency and improving comfort.

Consider A Sunroom Addition

A sunroom is a home addition designed as a distinct room from the rest of the home, often physically separated by French doors or sliding patio doors. Sunrooms can be a great add-on to any home, providing households with a space filled with natural light and room for entertaining, dining, or just spending time with family and friends. Sunrooms typically feature window panels in place of solid walls. The best sunroom additions, such as a four-season sunroom addition, can be very eco-friendly, providing you with a beautifully lit space without running up your energy costs.

Our design-build experts can provide you with eco-friendly sunroom ideas that complement your home’s aesthetic and match your vision for sustainability. Eco-friendly sunrooms typically feature Low-E, multi-paned windows, adequate ventilation, solar shades, reclaimed or recycled wood, stone, concrete, or tile flooring, and a southward-facing direction.

Choose Sustainable Building Materials

Another significant factor when renovating your home to be eco-friendly is materials. When selecting materials for your complete kitchen remodel, for example, consider choosing surfaces and products that are recycled, recyclable, or grown from easily renewable sources. Easily renewable material sources primarily apply to products made from wood.

Choosing sustainably harvested wood with FSC certification during your kitchen remodeling project means that wood is sustainably harvested and only as much material is taken as can regrow and regenerate. Other sustainable materials include short-cycle crops like cork, bamboo, help, and seaweed. If your project includes an outdoor kitchen, consider choosing concrete countertops, as concrete is a sustainable building material that offers efficiency, a long functional lifespan, and high resilience.

Use Energy-Efficient Appliances

While considering kitchen ideas, you’ll want to ensure each aspect of your kitchen is eco-friendly. Switching out your lightbulbs for LED lighting is a small and simple adjustment that will reduce your household’s energy consumption and reduce your electricity bill costs, as LED light bulbs typically use substantially less energy than conventional incandescent light bulbs.

In addition to your lighting, you should also consider investing in energy-efficient appliances, like those with Energy Star certification, for your refrigerator, washing machine, dryer, dishwasher, heating and cooling systems, water heater, and more. Our kitchen remodel design-build experts can provide you with options and help you select and realize the eco-friendly kitchen design you’ve always wanted.

Upgrade Your Plumbing System

If your home is old or historic, and it hasn’t received adequate upgrades, chances are it houses an outdated plumbing system with inefficient fixtures and features. Homes constructed or renovated before 1994 or plumbing fixtures older than the early 1990s are likely wasting significant water and money. Federally mandated by the Energy Policy Act of 1992, efficient or low-flow plumbing fixtures are designed to save water by having a smaller quantity per flush or a lower flow rate per use.

Consider swapping out inefficient, old fixtures for low-flow, efficient ones during your bathroom remodel. Another way to make your home eco-friendly is to install a tankless water heater. Traditional tank water waters continuously hold and heat water in their tanks until the heated water is needed. But if your household doesn’t require that much hot water, your system is wasting a substantial amount of energy. Tankless water heaters are an eco-friendly alternative that heat water on demand as it passes through your plumbing system.

Switch To Solar Energy

Among the most common ecologically friendly home improvements is the installation of solar panels on residential properties. Solar power can preserve water, minimize air pollution, and reduce the emission of greenhouse gases. As the cost to install solar panels further decreases and the quality of the panels surges, switching to solar energy is a sustainable home improvement option worth considering.

Solar panels can power fans, heat water, energize lighting fixtures, and even recharge batteries. By installing solar panels on your residential property, you immediately reduce the amount of electricity you use. As an added benefit, solar power is among the most consumer-friendly and cheapest options for clean energy.