Trends in Eco-Friendly Design

Green, eco-friendly home design is becoming more popular. It incorporates high energy efficiency standards, the use of renewable energy sources, and non-toxic materials when building a home. Solar panels are an important part to add in order to achieve this goal because they add the ability to produce clean, sustainable electricity right from your own roof!

So what exactly is green home design? One definition is: “Green building practices improve the environmental performance of buildings by integrating and optimizing all aspects of construction — energy, water conservation, waste management, and indoor environmental quality — while using only accepted best practices and technologies. Green homes can save the consumer money on utility bills and increase comfort.” More broadly it also means creating healthier living conditions for people and preserving the health of the planet.

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has a construction branch called the LEED system, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It rates buildings on their energy efficiency and how they impact the local environment. In order to meet the requirements of green home design, solar panels are an essential tool that can help homes qualify for this distinction.

Many states have recognized the benefits of eco-friendly building design and created tax credits to incentivize homeowners to go green. A popular trend is using your roof space to create generation capacity with solar panels then selling back into the electricity grid for extra income or just offsetting your bill! If that’s something you’re interested in doing yourself, you should consider solar panel financing options that can help you get the system installed with very little money down. It’s a great way to start saving money and going green without spending a ton of money upfront. 

Homeowners are also beginning to consider building materials when doing green home design. Some of the most popular choices are wood, bamboo, clay (adobe), and straw bale. Each of these materials has special environmental features that make them eco-friendly. Wood is very resistant to insects and rot; bamboo’s root system helps with erosion control; clay absorbs carbon dioxide rather than producing it as concrete does; straw bale is a great insulation material.

Eco-friendly home design doesn’t have to be expensive either. There are plenty of “green” materials that can be used in construction that will not break the bank. The building industry is beginning to take notice of the need for sustainable practices and innovation has brought forward better, more efficient technology that will help reduce energy consumption.

The trend of sustainable homes is a huge topic and there are many different possible features to design into them that will make them green. Some examples include: using local, non-toxic materials; utilizing renewable energy like solar panels, geothermal power, and wind turbines; conserving water because doing so reduces pollution and saves money; recycling building waste also reduces water pollution and landfill use; choosing healthy indoor air quality by adding ventilation systems or fresh plants; starting with smart site planning to reduce waste and impacts on land, water and wildlife habitat.  Another key aspect is to make sure home appliances like HVAC equipment (heating, ventilating, and air conditioning) meet high energy-efficiency standards.

These are just a few of the things that can be done to create green homes! There’s an organic movement upward in terms of what is expected and demanded environmentally friendly building and design. The development of sustainable designs has grown into its own entity, separate from old-fashioned non-green construction.