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This is a guest post by sustainability blogger Emily.
It’s a brand new year and it’s out with the old and in with the environmentally friendly! The first few months after Christmas festivities can be daunting if not a little glum, so you may be thinking about a home remodelling project.
Naturally, you’re big on natural living and you want to make your home beautiful but ethically, so take a look at some of the best ideas out there on environmentally friendly ways to redo your home.
There’s Nothing Like the Original
There’s nothing better than finding secret treasure, and that’s exactly what pre-owned goods are! Before you rush to the mall to buy the latest, shiniest mass-produced home-ware, get digging for some gold. Second-hand goods can transform your home through their authenticity, history and mysteriousness.
Take a Sunday trip to the thrift store, charity shop, or flea market and pick up something pre-loved and booming with character for your revamped house! No doubt you’ll also be saving some money.
The same applies to reclaimed building materials – if you’re remodelling on a grander scale you should consider installing recycled work surfaces, recycled glass or concrete splash-backs and carbon neutral porcelain tiles. Just make sure that the home improvements will add value to your home in case you do want to sell it in the future.
Related Post: How To Get an Eco-Friendly Kitchen & Save Money
And Then to Return the Favor!
In almost everything, there’s a little give and take and it’s no different in environmentally friendly home refurbishment! If you really cannot abide your dusty old chandelier anymore, your chaise long or your dining room furniture, send it with love to Goodwill, an animal charity consignment shop or even a friend who needs it. Recycle, donate or re-gift – don’t be part of the problem!
Don’t Throw It out – Bump It Up!
This is an important one; our planet is drowning in waste over here, so before you throw out your old cabinets, chest of drawers or doors, consider refacing them! Kitchen remodelling or bedroom makeovers can be financially expensive, but also costly to our environment.
Discarded furniture, building materials and accessories end up in our landfills, our oceans and as smog in our skies, so consider what new life you can bring to your existing home features with a coat of paint, some sanding or even stencilling.
Related Post: Eco-friendly Canvas Print & Wall Murals
Keep It Clean
We accept that in this age of consumerism, we may be told a few fibs by corporations trying to sell their products. One example of this is the illusion of clean. Think about “new carpet” smells, “fresh paint” smells and even “new mattress” smells; this type of odour – or off-gassing – is far from clean in reality.
According to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), a huge percentage of household products such as furniture, building materials and paint emit extremely volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
VOCs can cause irritation to your eyes and affect respiratory and nervous systems. The EPA estimates that levels of about a dozen common organic pollutants are two to five times higher inside homes than outside.
Luckily, low or no VOC paints are not only more environmentally friendly but also more durable and healthy for homeowners, so grab some brushes and rollers and get painting!
How About Saving Some Energy?
The pinnacle of environmental sustainability is the efficient use of energy; therefore, why not take this attitude into your home refurbishment? Of course, one of the main uses of energy in homes is through our appliances.
Fridges, ovens, dishwashers and other white appliances can be extremely burdensome on the environment, therefore in the spirit of refurbishment, how about picking up some brand new Energy Star products?
Energy star products can help you choose the product which will generate the least amount of electrical energy and keep your fresh new pad on the good side of Mother Nature.
There has never before been so many options for environmentally conscious people like you to create or recreate your perfect home. Make your first few months of 2018 count and breathe new and sustainable life into your world.
Emily is a sustainability blogger. You can read more of her work on her blog, Conservation Folk.
About Gina Caro
Gina is a content creator and award-winning blogger. Her aim is to help you live a more sustainable & simple life. Her blog covers zero waste, minimalism, wellbeing & thrift. She currently lives in Cornwall with her partner, two kids and Charles the dog.