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The Cardinal Press is a lifestyle blog about living beautifully and creatively, every day.

Design Tips For An Eco-Friendly Home

Design Tips For An Eco-Friendly Home

This is a guest post by Cassie Brewer.

eco-friendly design

If you’re an environmentally responsible consumer who wants to live what you preach, doesn’t it make sense to ensure that where you live actually reflects your eco-friendly commitment? One way that you can do so is to use eco-friendly design tips when you opt to update or renovate.

A previous report indicated that 48% of Canadian homeowners planned to renovate in 2017 by spending an average of $11,800. The report added that 56% of Canadian homeowners intended to renovate rather than to sell their homes and buy new ones.

The top renovation projects planned by Canadians included the following:

  • Basic maintenance

  • Landscaping

  • Bathroom renovations.

If you’d like to update your home and reinvigorate your living space, read on for a look at several design tips for an eco-friendly home.

Green Flooring

Don't forget flooring if you’re mulling over eco-friendly home design possibilities. There are lots of options for green flooring. For instance, you can go with cork. While it hasn't traditionally been widely used as a flooring material, it is most certainly a great option. It's harvested from the bark of cork oak trees, and the trees don't have to be cut down to get the bark. Every three years, the bark will grow back, so it's certainly a renewable resource that makes it a green flooring option. In addition to being a flooring material that can be finished in various stains and paints to fit your sense of style, cork floors have a long life and can last between 10 and 30 years. Another green flooring option is bamboo, which is somewhat similar to hardwood. The wood is sustainable and comes from natural vegetation that replenishes itself every three to five years.

DIY Toilet Float Booster

A do-it-yourself toilet float booster is a must if you don't already have an eco-friendly toilet in your bathroom. What a DIY float booster does is displace water from the toilet tank so that you wind up using less water everytime you flush. How do you make one? First, get yourself an empty two-liter soda bottle. Then you'll want to fill one-quarter of it with sand, and then fill up the rest of the bottle with water. You'll then need to screw the cap back on the bottle and put the float booster in the toilet tank. Since it will force your toilet to fill less, you'll save up to one gallon every time you flush. One gallon might not seem like a whole lot, but consider that toilets can use as many as seven gallons per flush, so reducing that by a gallon will mean a lot over time.

Efficient Shower Head

Were you aware that showers actually account for approximately 40% of the hot water used inside your residence? You can, however, make better use of the water in your home by installing shower heads that are more efficient. Using a proper low-flow shower head, particularly one rated at 1.75 gallons per minute, will cut your water and energy bills by as much as 30%. An efficient shower head might not seem like much of a design tip, but it will save you a lot of water, and it can be done along with any bathroom renovation you have planned.

Kitchen Cabinetry

If you're having your kitchen cabinets custom made, be sure to request material that is free from urea formaldehyde. GREENGUARD Certified laminates are best for countertops as well. Should you be looking for a finish that is stone-like in appearance, Ice Stone, a material that is up to three-quarters glass, will fit the bill. You can also head down to any retailer that provides cabinetry and request products that are certified to be manufactured sustainably.

You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to be a good environmental steward. Often times, it’s just about making the right choices when confronted with decisions as a consumer. And there’s no better way to live what you believe than to ensure that where you live is eco-friendly.

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