Why go green at home?
If you already live in a green home, you use less energy, water and natural resources, you’re creating less waste, and you live in a healthier environment compared to a standard home. If you’d like to live in a green home, there are lots of reasons for doing so. According to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), there are three primary benefits of living in a green home: health, cost-effectiveness, and environmental sensitivity. More homeowners are realizing these benefits, which is why green home construction has jumped from 2% in 2005 to 23% in 2013 according to the United States Green Business Council.
Healthier Living for You and Your Family
The use of toxin-free building materials helps reduce indoor air pollution, which can be much worse than outdoor pollution. Unhealthy air inside can pose serious health risks for residents, including cancer and respiratory ailments like asthma. Green homes also have far fewer problems with mold or mildew, thanks to natural ventilation and the use of mechanical ventilation systems to filter and bring fresh air inside and vent stale air outside.
Green is Cost-Efficient
According to the USGBC, the net cost of owning a green home is comparable to – or even cheaper than – owning a standard home. Living in green homes saves money by consuming 40% less energy and 50% less water than standard homes. A green home is more durable than most standard homes because of the use of high-quality building materials and construction processes. The organization also notes that the value of a green home is typically higher than that of a comparable standard home, and the market demand for green homes continues to rise.
Homes are a major source of energy consumption. According to the USGBC, green homes use 40% less energy than comparable standard homes. And with efficient plumbing and bathing fixtures, drought-tolerant landscaping and water-conserving irrigation systems, green homes use an average of 50% less water than standard homes. The use of recycled, rapidly-renewable, and salvaged building materials means far fewer natural resources are used in the construction of a green home. And the use of wood that is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council helps promote socially and environmentally beneficial forestry practices. The USGBC notes that building a standard 2,500-square-foot home creates approximately two tons of construction waste that ends up in landfills. Construction of a green home generates 50% to 90% less waste.
Source: Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company, 2008
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