The building and construction industry was responsible for 39% of CO2 emissions in 2018. 11% of this was directly related to not using environmentally-conscious materials during the building process.
You may think that building energy-efficient houses would be a lot of extra work. In reality, it actually doesn’t take much effort to figure out which materials and products used are going to be efficient.
Are you interested in learning more about affordable energy-efficient house plans? Do you want to find out what it takes to build a home that is energy-efficient for yourself?
Keep reading to find out more about what an energy-efficient house is and how you could build one in the future.
Why Build an Energy-Efficient House?
A lot of people want to use energy wisely since lower energy consumption leads to a smaller carbon footprint. While it is kind to the environment to build an energy-efficient house, it’s not the only reason someone may want to do it.
The main reason that you might want an energy-efficient house is that it can be cost-effective. If it’s built correctly, you’ll have a home with good insulation that lets you spend less on heating and cooling per year.
Being more eco-friendly and sustainable in your daily life is another big reason that you may want to build an energy-efficient home. You’ll be able to keep up with the latest trends, but also learn more about something that has a huge impact.
A lot of the newest appliances, fixtures, or other aspects that go into a home are going to be more energy-efficient as well.
By having a house that is already built to be efficient, there are minimal things that you’ll need to do to be more energy efficient.
Someone that lives in a home that sucks up a lot of energy and water will have to pay more attention to their lifestyle. In an energy-efficient home, the actual house will do that work for you.
An energy-efficient house means you get to have less stress while saving money and saving the environment. Instead of asking yourself why you should build an energy-efficient house, you should be asking yourself what you have to lose.
What Features Are Needed?
Clearly, an energy-efficient house has to be built differently than a standard house or it won’t have the same impact.
The United States Department of Energy has created a rating system called the Home Energy Score that informs people about where their home sits in terms of efficiency. It lets you compare energy use across the market and shows you where your home stands compared to others.
To get a better score on the rating system, you will need to pay attention to the following features as you build your home.
Windows and Doors
Windows and doors have to be sealed in order to keep the air inside the home at a consistent temperature. By using EnergyStar certified windows on a home, a homeowner can save as much as $583 per year on energy.
Make sure that you choose home builders that are experienced in sealing windows and doors properly.
Even with everything else perfectly constructed in the home, a bad seal can make all the difference.
Having poor insulation makes your home less comfortable and your costs higher.
Insulation that isn’t doing its job well will make your walls and floors feel colder. You may even notice with poor insulation that the temperatures between rooms are dramatically different.
Your insulation has a huge impact on your home for years to come, so choose high-quality insulation from the beginning that will last.
Let your home builders know which type of insulation you want beforehand by doing some research before the build gets started.
You can make your home more eco-friendly by only using the water that you really need.
The fixtures that you choose for your kitchen and bathroom can be more eco-friendly than the standard faucet. This will result in less water usage, which means a lower bill for you, but also less waste.
Another benefit of installing high-quality fixtures is that they are less likely to leak. This means there is one less thing that you have to worry about.
Also, consider the type of toilets and showers you choose.
A dual-flush toilet, for example, uses less water than your average toilet. Alternatively, a low-flow showerhead will save you gallons of water.
Choose light fixtures and lightbulbs that are energy-efficient when building an energy-efficient home. Any type of lighting you have, whether it is outdoor lighting or ceiling fan lighting, can be more efficient.
Don’t forget that you can also use natural light to your advantage when planning to build a new home. This amounts to no energy used and still gives you the light that you need during the day.
If privacy is a concern, window privacy shades are always an option to add extra style to your room at the same time as concealing the inside.
Choosing to Build Energy-Efficient Houses
There are plenty of energy-efficient houses already in existence and by focusing on the areas that they succeed, you can build the home you want.
If you’re already spending the money to build a home, you should spend a little more upfront to spend less on bills over time. Creating an energy-efficient home helps you now, but it also helps people in the future by creating less waste.
Do you want to learn more about maintaining your home? If so, check out our Home & Garden section for additional content like this.