It’s now more important than ever to consider eco-friendly solutions and lifestyles when choosing and decorating our homes. Not just for our own conscience, but to improve environmental quality and to reduce living costs in the long and short term. Building or adapting the exterior of our homes to be more eco-friendly or green isn’t always simple and straightforward, but we can use the way we design the interior of our homes to influence our lifestyles and help us to become more supporting of our planet’s ecosystems.
First and foremost, you should be striving to get most or some of your energy from renewable sources. Varying depending on your part of the world and your local environment, there are renewable sources generating power from water, wind, and solar that are much friendlier to the earth. Solar panels are fairly inexpensive to install in your home, and once up and running you can use the sunlight to generate all of your home’s power. In some areas you can even supply any additional energy you have to others, earning you a monetary profit at the same time!
We should also be sticking to the use of natural materials where we can, especially for harder pieces of furniture and structural choices such as wall cladding and flooring. Plastics, which includes flooring solutions like laminate and linoleum, should be disregarded and we should opt for natural materials such as stone and real wood, where manufacturing and sourcing methods are much more environmentally friendly. And if we’re being shallow, real stone and wooden floor add a much more luxurious and glamorous feel to any home. If you can source and use any recycled wooden or metal materials, use these before you purchase anything that’s brand new. Not only will you be doing your bit for the environment, you might also get to create a piece of interior design that is truly unique!
Depending on your part of the world and your local climate, many of us can change our interior design to garner as much natural light as possible. Sunlight, even on colder and rainy days, can be used to bring light into the home without the need to flick a light switch. Larger windows that face the sun, intelligent layouts and even sky windows can reduce our electricity usage and help us to appreciate the sun a little more. Opening up our homes to more sunlight also brings us warmth and reduces our need for home heating, especially in summer months. Use lighter curtains that will conduct heat if you want to lower your heating bills, and don’t forget to add a few wool blankets to your living areas to keep you warm and cosy.
Don’t forget to add plenty of plants to your home, and make it your aim to grow your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Reduce those costly trips to the supermarket and make your home much more sufficient.