This is not news: We are depleting our natural resources at a faster rate than they are able to regenerate. We should all look to Reduce, Recycle and Re-use. When building a new, custom home with JMS Builders & Developers, Inc., we will work with you to ensure your house is sustainable. Retrofitting an older house to increase energy efficiency can sometimes be seen as a challenge. This doesn’t have to be the case. Below are 5 easy steps you can take to increase the green factor in your existing home.
We suggest working from the outside in. Without a well-insulated house, many improvements on the inside will be lost through inefficiencies in your exterior shell.
- JMS Builders can help you decide upon the right type of insulation to beef up your home’s efficiency (especially in the attic). This could include spray foam, bats, or foil-covered polystyrene.
- Check the caulking & weather-stripping around your house. A tight seal will keep the cool air in during summer months and keep the cool air out during winter months. Home improvement stores sell these supplies so you can ‘do-it-yourself.’
The best way to increase the efficiency of windows is to hire JMS Builders to install new, Energy Star qualified windows. If this is not in your budget right at the moment, there are less expensive measures you can take that will help.
- Hang insulated curtains or drapes on your windows and harness the sun’s energy. Keep these drapes closed when the sun is up in summer and open when the sun is up in winter months.
- Plant deciduous shade-trees around your house especially near the Eastern and Western facing windows to prevent too much sun heating your house in the summer.
- Cover your single pane windows with energy efficient window film.
Water conservation is a lesson parents have been trying to teach for years. No matter the budget there are steps you can take to cut down on usage.
- Turn the water off while brushing teeth. Leaving the water running uses 1or more gallons of water every time you brush.
- Take quicker showers. It feels good to stand under the shower and let the hot water run over your body but this wastes more than 60 gallons of water for each 10 minute shower.
- Call JMS Builders to install low-flow shower heads and toilets.
- Install an aerator on your faucet. This will infuse air into the water to make the stream more forceful without turning the tap on high.
Easy ways to decrease plastic use include investing in re-usable grocery and sandwich bags. Another option is to order deli meat from the deli. It’s quick to walk by the refrigerator section and grab the pre-cut kind in a plastic container. But where does that container end up?
Reduce waste by composting organic food scraps and yard trimmings. Keep a composting pail in the kitchen and periodically empty into a large composting bin in the backyard. Use compost to fertilize gardens.
Together we can make a difference! Visit our Facebook page and share your tips.